Furniture industry enhances links with international buyers

2021 Mar 23rd

Despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the woodworking industry increased exports of wood and forestry products by 16.4 per cent last year to US$13.17 billion, according to the Handicraft and Wood Industry Association of HCM City (HAWA).

Speaking at a press briefing to introduce next month’s Vietnam Furniture Matching Week in HCM City on Wednesday, Nguyen Chanh Phuong, HAWA deputy chairman, said last year Viet Nam surpassed Poland, Germany and Italy in wood product exports and was only behind China.

This year the industry has seen export orders increase, especially from the US, she said.

Besides the export target of $14 billion this year, the industry should also pay attention to other important metrics such as labour productivity, product value and social and environmental sustainability, she said.

“Utilising technology, embracing digital transformation and diversifying methods for approaching customers are imperative.”

Duong Thi Minh Tue, a member of HAWA’s executive board, said “To sustain exports, firms must routinely make efforts to retain customers and search for new markets.”

March and April are the peak order period, and major furniture fairs are held in Asia, but the pandemic has caused the fairs to be cancelled, and businesses need to make the most of trade promotion channels, both online and offline, to reach out to buyers, she said.

“Digitising exhibitions and business matching is the most effective choice today. And the Viet Nam Furniture Matching Week is held to help businesses to reach out to buyers.”

Viet Nam Furniture Matching Week

To be held from April 12 to 19 the Viet Nam Furniture Matching Week will seek to connect Vietnamese manufacturers with thousands of international buyers.

The highlight will be Furniture Sourcing Day on April 14 in HCM City, which will bring together more than 300 local manufacturers, executives from foreign companies in the country and local and foreign sourcing partners, including big names in the industry such as Kingfisher, IKEA, Ashley, Rowico, Target, Carrefour, Test Rite, Trade point, and MADE.COM.

Factory tours will be organised.

An online exhibition and B2B matching event will be held on the HOPE platform (www.hopefairs.com) to introduce 100 Vietnamese producers to global buyers and offer the latter a visual experience and connection with the former.

A series of webinars with in-depth analysis of some key markets such as the US, the UK, the Republic of Korea, Germany, and Canada will be held.

HAWA launched the HOPE (HAWA Online Platform for Exhibition) last year to connect furniture suppliers with global buyers at a time when many trade fairs and exhibitions were postponed or cancelled due to COVID.

It offers 3D images of showrooms, factories and workshops, a 3D product catalogue, social apps to enable 24/7 interaction between exhibitors and visitors, digital marketing, live events, and others.

It has a total of more than 20,000 square metres of virtual showrooms and 10,000 products belonging to 100 exhibitors and attracts 30,000 visitors from 100 countries and territories. — VNS