Last year the BAGB's Harrogate show attracted 1917 visitors. This year the total dropped to 1300 visitors (724 on Sunday, 369 on Monday and 207 on Tuesday, with 700 being repeat visitors across all three days).

Visitor numbers were down at ICC

In 2001 the show attracted 522 seperate IBDs. A breakdown for this year shows that there 646 seperate IBDs.

However, anecdotally, most of the larger exhibitors – which rely on seeing as many IBDs as possible at shows – report that it "didn’t feel like [even] 450 dealers." Those suppliers writing up orders from their existing dealer base believe there were less than 250 seperate dealers at the show.

There are about 1800 IBDs in the UK.

The Cycle & Leisure Show 2002 got 1800 visitors, down from 4000 in 2001. 450 seperate bike shops attended in 2002 yet 1200 attended the previous year. Again, suppliers complained that it felt as though there were less seperate IBDs than this.

The reasons for the drop in visitor numbers at both trade shows can be attributed to a great many factors, including the fact there are two shows, relatively close together, slugging it out and splitting the attentions of exhibitors.

The non-appearance of Madison at either show (the market-dominating company held its own well-attended dealer convention instead) is also a contributory factor.

For the many other reasons IBDs are failing to turn up at trade shows, click over to the bulletin board and read the 40 postings on the subject.

Many exhibitors at ICC blamed the poor attendance on IBD ‘apathy’. Many IBD no-shows, however, blame industry bosses for not staging one, big show at a time of year when (a) there’s plenty of product launches and (b) their shops aren’t packed out with customers.

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