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Small Business Expo exceeds expectations

Monday 8
August 2005


Small Business Expo exceeds expectations as largest event ever for small business

Aimed at business owners, the Small Business Expo exceeded organisers expectations as the largest single event ever held for small business in New Zealand.

Running over three days from July 20-22 2005 at the Auckland Showgrounds in Greenlane, the Expo was designed as a ‘business to business marketplace’ for small and medium sized businesses, providing all types of business solutions under the one roof.

Organiser, small business sector specialist and small business owner Sarah Trotman said with more than 7,000 visitors, attendance well exceeded the 6,500 target.

“By the day before of the Expo, we had more than 4,900 business owners pre-register to attend the expo, which was incredible and proof that a business to business marketplace is in high demand for New Zealand business owners.”

Troman said feedback from exhibitors and attendees has also been overwhelmingly positive.

Of those exhibitors surveyed by independent survey company Touchpoll, 98 percent where happy with the number of visitors to the expo, again 98 percent were happy with the quality of attendees, 87 percent either totally or mostly achieved their set objectives for the expo, and 96 percent said they planned to exhibit next year.

Of attendees surveyed, 43 percent had conducted business with exhibitors while at the Expo, 64 percent planned to conduct business with exhibitors after the Expo, 94 percent were happy with their overall experience at the Expo and 82 percent said they are likely to attend the Expo again next year.

Trotman said she was thrilled with the positive feedback that has been flowing in from attendees, exhibitors and from the wider business community.

“We well and truly achieved our target of being the largest event ever held for small business. But more importantly, all the indicators show that attendees and exhibitors were delighted with what they got out of their expo experience.

“There is also lot of interest and support out there for another event to be held next year which is really positive.”

Minister for Small Business, the Hon Rick Barker, visited the Expo prior to speaking at the inaugural Vero Excellence in Business Support Awards, held in conjunction with the Small Business Expo on Thursday 21 July. Minister Barker said he was very impressed with what he saw:

"The Expo was full of energy and pumping. Anyone who went would surely
have gotten value from it like I did. I was excited to be part of a celebration of Small Business success and it was a pleasure for me to be able to take part.

“Congratulations to the winners of the Vero Excellence in Business Support Awards and organisers of both these wonderful events. I look forward to seeing them on the calendar as regular events for business."

Trotman, who has been involved in numerous business expos over the years, said the Expo was well and truly the most successful she has been involved in and credits sponsors Vodafone, Microsoft, NZ Herald and Newstalk ZB for making the event such a significant opportunity for business owners of New Zealand.

She said she will definitely hold another Small Business Expo in May next year, and, given that expo attendees came from all over the country, is also exploring the possibility of taking the expo to Christchurch and Wellington.


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