By Donna Sylvester
Designers and retailers from all over the world will be converging upon Las Vegas this week to see what’s new and trending in home décor, gifts, and furniture.
“For everyone, it’s what’s now, what’s trending, and what do I have to tweak to stay relevant,” said Scott Eckman, chief strategy officer for International Market Centers, which plans the one-of-a-kind marketplace in the heart of Vegas.
But before any sharing of new products and trends can take place among the thousands of attendees, Eckman and his team have a big puzzle to tackle.
Key to the success of Las Vegas Market – the only marketplace for furniture, home décor, and gifts – is providing just the right space for the more than 4,000 vendors participating.
“We have over 200 employees who coordinate all of these functions. These are professionals who are trained to put these shows on – from operations teams to marketing teams. Really it’s a big operation – both operationally and lots, and lots of communications,” Eckman told House Tipster during an interview on Sunday, the first day of the show.
“We think of it almost like the orchestra coming together with all the different pieces,” said Eckman, president of Leasing for Furniture & Home Decor.
Big plans bring big rewards for Eckman and his team, as they watch new companies get their start and grow as a result of contacts made through their participation in Las Vegas Market.
“It’s building relationships with these passionate entrepreneurs and watching their business grow. People don’t come to market once they’re big companies. They come as small companies, and we get to watch them become big companies and realize their dream,” he said.
The greatest challenge facing the planners of Las Vegas Market and the vendors they serve is guarding against complacency, he said.
“You have success and something works, but if you don’t continuously improve you fall behind, so as a market center we’re always looking for ways to keep improving just like our exhibitors are always finding new products and introducing new items, even though the other ones are performing well,” Eckman said.
Eckman pointed to Vanguard Furniture as one of the highlights of this show, and added that Las Vegas Market is also known for its surprises.
“There’s lots and lots of things we will uncover throughout the show,” he said.
Helping vendors keep up with the focus on new trends are a number of seminars, like Ahead of the Curve, First Look, and Best of the West. Experts shop the market on the first day and then report during seminars on the most promising new trends.
Excited about what this week has to offer, Eckman said, “Folks from all over the world will be here this week, seeing what the American companies are doing and looking for new opportunities.”