As many members and followers of the Bluewater Wood Alliance may be aware, the BWA recently returned from an export development exercise representing seven Southwestern Ontario wood manufacturers at Index 2013, a major trade show in Dubai (UAE). Read on for details and pictures!
As many members and followers of the Bluewater Wood Alliance may be aware, the BWA recently returned from an export development exercise representing seven Southwestern Ontario wood manufacturers at Index 2013, a major trade show in Dubai (UAE), as a result of a research project conducted in partnership with Laurier University for export development, in an effort to develop new export markets for value-added Ontario wood products. The Index 2013 show took place May 20-23, 2013.
Index is a very large “design show” with exhibitors from all over the world, and the Bluewater Wood Alliance booth was the only Canadian flag flown at the show. Hundreds of exhibitors and thousands of visitors came to the show to see the various vendors and their products ranging from various kinds of furniture, lighting, outdoor living, kitchen, bathroom, surface finishes, flooring, and more.
To kick off the show, the BWA booth had the honor of a visit from his Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance. Pictured greeting his Highness is BWA Manager Mike Baker.
Seven participating BWA member wood manufacturers representing furniture, flooring, high-end garage doors, and children’s toys. The companies include: Bogdon & Gross Furniture Company (Walkerton), Vokes Furniture (Owen Sound), West Brothers Furniture (Hanover), Oxford Carriage Doors (Tavistock), Crate Designs (Chesley), Stock Wooden Toys (Williamsford) and South Bruce Flooring (Mildmay) were represented at the show.
The BWA booth was very busy! Visitors were interested in all aspects of BWA products and the capabilities of our members. One BWA member has received an RFQ from an interested party who has expressed interest to become a dealer for the region.
Other leads include various project developers for Universities, apartment complexes, and hotel development that are currently being vetted and followed up to turn them into orders for new business. What Index 2013 in Dubai has done has verified and defined the Middle East as an emerging market for Ontario wood products. The work now begins for the participating companies to turn this into new business, and set our eyes on the next export project. Congrats to the BWA and its members for making Index 2013 a reality! Stay tuned for more updates on BWA’s export development initiatives for its members!
While there were seven BWA companies participating in the Dubai project, the results will benefit all of the BWA members, as a new understanding of exporting potential of Ontario wood products to this market will be shared with all the members.
This success speaks to the power of true clustering: one manufacturing sector, one region, the right mindset of business leaders, and support of government and community partners.
Natural Resources Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources are key partners and supporters of this initiative, and the benefits will positively affect the international profile of Canadian wood products on the world stage.
Pictured below is Dennis and Lucas McGlynn from South Bruce Flooring in Mildmay, ON. who also attended Index along with Mike Baker, Manager, BWA.