What makes BETA International an unmissable event for outdoor retailers? Show organiser Claire Thomas takes to the hot seat to answer our questions on this leading B2B event
Can you provide an overview of BETA International for those who have not visited before?
Certainly. BETA International is the world’s leading trade exhibition for equestrian, country clothing, outdoor and pet products. It takes place every year at the NEC, Birmingham, and in 2019 it runs from Sunday 20 to Tuesday 22 January.
The show features around 250 exhibitors from the UK and overseas, and welcomes 4,000 ABC-audited trade buyers who are keen on securing that competitive edge. The majority come to source exciting new products and services, and are keen to take advantage of the many top-class free seminars that are available, some with CPD points. Networking, too, is hugely important, particularly in the current economic climate, and there is plenty of opportunity to put faces to names and make new friends and powerful industry contacts.
BETA International is very much a place to see and be seen – a fantastic global gathering where buying and business are key. It enjoys a brilliant reputation for its warm, friendly atmosphere and is organised by a highly skilled and knowledgeable team with a customer-focused approach and ‘can do’ attitude.
The spirit of competition burns brightly throughout the show’s three halls with the fiercely contested Innovation Awards, where winning is highly prized, and you can literally hear a pin drop as the trophies are presented.
This year is BETA International’s 40th anniversary and both exhibitors and visitors will be joining us to raise a glass to celebrate at our free After-Show Drinks on the Sunday.
What type of products and services will we see?
Products really are the stars of the show and we have large, established companies and smaller, quirky new start-ups in the halls putting their finest collections and brands on display. The fact that many have chosen to launch their new ranges at BETA International speaks volumes – if you want to catch a buyer’s eye, this trade fair is the place to do it! Exhibiting companies come from sectors with synergy. Equestrian, with its waterproof and technical clothing and footwear, links nicely to country clothing, outdoor and pet, for example.
Gone are the days when a retail store remained niche. A little healthy diversification holds the key to success and many visitors to the show have been enthusiastic and successful in their quest to unlock new markets.
We have many products that will be of tremendous interest to outdoor retailers, including country boots, waterproof jackets, wellington boots, accessories, tweeds, knitwear, leather goods, yard tools, country giftware and dog products such as bedding, coats, collars and leads.
Are there any special events, talks or displays?
Yes, indeed. Special events, stunning features and celebrity guests are a hallmark of BETA International. The Charles Owen Spotlight is our fabulous new feature for 2019 and we are really looking forward to introducing this contemporary business and entertainment theatre to the mix. It will be a real hive of activity throughout. Each day, the cream of country collections will take to the catwalk in the Fashion Show and retailer seminars will hit the spot, offering retailers handy hints and helpful advice.
On Sunday, ITV newscaster Alastair Stewart will return to host Talking Business, a red-hot debate where industry heavyweights go head to head to discuss tough issues in equally tough times. We are also looking forward to welcoming World Equestrian Games eventing champion Ros Canter and gold-medal-winning para-Olympian Sophie Christiansen.
Staples of the show are the New Product Gallery, a brilliant showcase for highlighting all the latest lines and flagging up where they can be found in the halls, The Original MUCK Boot Company Chill-Out Zone, where visitors can take a well-deserved rest, and the VetSpec Coffee Shop and NAF Five Star Champagne Bar for meetings and get-togethers with friends and colleagues.
We are thrilled to invite all our visitors to join us for free After-Show Drinks on Sunday evening. This is the perfect time to relax after a busy day at the show with colleagues and friends old and new. Providing complimentary drinks and canapés is our way of thanking people for their support and it creates a fabulous feel-good atmosphere.
How easy is it to visit the show?
Registering to visit BETA International has never been quicker or easier, as our trade-only audience can apply online at beta-int.com/register-to-visit, and accommodation to suit every budget is easily sourced through our dedicated booking agency, Event Express, which can be found at beta-int.com/visit/accommodation.
BETA International’s central location makes it highly accessible for everyone. It is adjacent to the NEC complex, with motorway links and Birmingham International Railway Station close by. In fact, those travelling by rail can benefit from a 25 percent saving on tickets from Virgin Trains and, for visitors who prefer to drive, we are really pleased to offer free parking.
How can we find out more?
The BETA International website is a great place to start. Visit beta-int.com for full details of show features and up-to-the-minute news and schedules. If you would prefer to speak with someone, our friendly office manager Clair Webster is happy to help. Telephone her on +44 (0)1937 582111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
6 reasons not to miss out – why outdoor retailers should be there
* 100s of great new products
* Exclusive show-only offers
* Prime networking opportunities
* Build your knowledge in a wide range of seminars
* Explore your potential for diversification
* It puts you ahead of the competition – and keeps you there!