Special technology zones at Computer '97 will highlight the latest marketing trends. The zones include multimedia technologies, infotainment media, software applications, Internet technology, Data Capturing and Auto I-D and the SOHO (small offices and home users') pavilion. A spokesman said firms could improve their marketing potential by displaying their latest computer hardware and software developments. 'Computer '97 will help companies connect up with corporate decision-makers, purchasers, professionals and home-users. It represents some firms first marketing strike in 1997 in Hong Kong, the hub of Asia. The expo will also help exhibitors open up new markets, gain new customers, develop new contacts, generate more sales, consolidate brand loyalty and improve their corporate image.' A special shopping centre has been set up at the fair for small business owners who want to buy a computer or the latest small business technology and automation equipment. Statistics have revealed that an increasing number of small office and home office companies are increasingly demanding more and more software packages and online services in the market. The exhibition features the latest equipment and products for small businesses, including personal computers such as Internet Ready PC and MPCs. Other equipment on display includes palm-size computers and organisers and software for account control, personal finance packages, desktop publishing, word processing and data storage. Internet packages include web authouring, tools and web sites along with computer furniture, cellular and business phones and answering devices. A spokesman for the event organiser, Business and Industrial Trade Fairs, said other special technology zones that could prove lucrative for companies included multimedia technologies. 'The zone provides exhibitors with a unique opportunity to demonstrate their competitive strength. Multimedia technologies can prove their continual application potential in business, communications, education and entertainment,' he said. The Infotainment media zone brings visitors to the computer world by introducing the newest information and entertainment hardware and software. Organisers say visitors can gain a more in-depth picture of the new technology from a new Data Capturing and Auto-ID Hall which they claim could boost sales. Louis Leung, senior manager of the Business and Industrial Trade Fairs, said classifying the exhibition would promote business for firms by catching the 'eyes' of interested buyers and professionals.