Gift show success endorses PTI’s Path to Market initiative

Remarking on a year in which participation at trade shows was the highest in recent years for Pacific Trade Invest (PTI) NZ,  Trade & Investment Commissioner Michael Greenslade says, “The year 2017 has seen our Path to Market programme participate with 24 stands at the Pasifika festival, nine stands at the Auckland Food Show and four stands at last week’s gift show. 

The PTI NZ stand featuring four Pacific companies generated good interest at the Gift Fair in Auckland.

“We believe assisting our Path to Market graduates become export ready is valuable to the companies and paying dividends in terms of confirmed sales at these shows.”

PTI NZ invited four Pacific Island companies to showcase their products at the Auckland Spring Home and Gift Fair from August 27 to 29. The trade-only event had more than 300 exhibitors from around New Zealand and overseas and attracted a good number of trade, wholesale and retail visitors. The four companies – Kora Pearls from the Cook Islands, Fiji’s Essence of Fiji and Natural Fiji and The Summit from Vanuatu – were housed in a specially themed PTI branded set of stands in Hall 5 at the ASB Showgrounds venue in Auckland.

Mr Greenslade  said, “This is the first time that PTI put in a delegation at the Auckland Spring Home and Gift Fair. We selected a targeted number of four companies from our PTI Path to Market programme.”

The PTI NZ Pacific Path to Market programme is designed to help exporters from the Pacific Islands gain a better understanding of the New Zealand market. It is an export capability programme combining a range of export facilitation services to help export ready and export capable businesses to enter New Zealand.

The programme follows a series of methodical steps to get into the New Zealand market, starting with the workshops followed by an exploratory trade mission to New Zealand to apply their learnings, trial their products and packaging and introduce exporters to potential buyers.

“The four companies have all indicated that the design and quality of the stand was first class and also congratulated the PTI communications team for media exposure in both conventional media and social media,” Mr Greenslade said.

Being a trade-only event, exhibitors could book orders directly from distributors and retailers interested in their products as well as field enquiries and explore business opportunities with co-exhibitors. While the four companies expressed satisfaction at the outcomes, they were yet to quantify the potential orders they had garnered or negotiated.

“We are in the process of collecting data in actual sales for the four companies,” Mr Greenslade told Pacific Periscope. “However, all companies report confirmed sales have been made with strong interest from existing buyers with deals being concluded.”

The Summit Vanuatu’s Sandra Mazzucco and Terry Adlington at the show.

The Summit Vanuatu’s Terry Adlington described his company’s participation as a great experience, though he said there were several learnings to take away. He said he saw the need to tailor the packaging and graphic design of the products to suit the New Zealand market. He said there was high interest in both the sandalwood products and the essential oils. “Tamanu is a fairly new essential oil,” he said.

The summit grows, harvests and manufactures all its natural products at its site in Port Vila Vanuatu. “We do everything from planting to distilling the essential oils at our facility,” he said.

For Ashneeta Sharma, New Zealand distributor for Natural Fiji’s range of products, participation at the show was a first-time experience. “Being here was great. It was a formal way of putting our range of products before such a wide range of retailers and wholesalers.”

Natural Fiji Director Geeta Reddy with New Zealand distributor Ashneeta Sharma at the Natural Fiji booth.

She said she was able to widen her horizons about who may be her ultimate customers. “It wasn’t just retailers and gift shop owners. We had visits from pharmacies, general merchants, even online shops. One of these seems very serious and I am hopeful of a deal,” she said.

“We are delighted with the feedback and it is very likely that the gift show will be part of our programme in 2018 as well,” Trade & Investment Commissioner Greenslade said. “We are now looking forward to featuring another six Pacific companies at the Chocolate and Coffee show on September 23-24 at The Cloud on Auckland’s waterfront.”

PTI NZ Trade Development Manager, Joe Fuavao said, “Participation in the Auckland Food Show and The Spring Gift and Homeware Fair are industry focused and a unique platform for our export ready companies to take the next step in selling their products beyond the Pasifika Festival.”

Kora Pearls and Essence of Fiji have been profiled in this edition. Natural Fiji and The Summit Vanuatu will be featured in our next edition of Pacific Periscope.

For more information please email PTI NZ Trade Development Manager Joe Fuavao at

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