Pico meets a tall order for the fair

PICO International had a tall order to meet for the International Leather Fair - to turn a 26,000-square-metre area of the Convention and Exhibition Centre into an exhibition hall with 600 booths - all in three days.

But for the exhibition designer and contractor who has played a major role in the fair since 1988, it meant a $7 million contract.

As the official contractor of the fair, Pico built the electrical network and the standard booths.

While Pico provides the basic standard booth, it can also build elaborate designs for exhibitors if requested.

Executive director Mr Louis Cheng Teong Meng said clients with big budgets might even request a double-storey booth.

He said 400 booths at the fair would be designed by the company. The booths are of different sizes, depending on the demands of the exhibitors.

According to Mr Cheng, the big spenders for the fair were the Italians, Germans, Taiwanese, Indians and the British.

''The Italians for instance will occupy 2,000 square metres,'' he said.

He also said exhibitors generally liked to project their corporate images in such trade shows.

''This is because they are usually not selling only leather products but also semi-finished products and hides,'' Mr Cheng said.

Planning the designs and the construction for the exhibition area started a year ago but the process has become more intensive in the past six months after the exhibitors finalised their designs.

Mr Cheng said the company had not encountered any major problems but pointed out the only constraint was that the lift at the convention centre moved too slowly.

The event will be on levels five and seven of the convention centre and the mezzanine floor in between the two levels.

The fair has 2,000 exhibitors, of which 1,200 are beinghandled by Pico.

Mr Cheng said overseas exhibitors made up 90 per cent of the show.

Over the years, he said the fair had grown substantially. ''The organisers have now decided to do two shows [for the fair] next year.'' Mr Cheng also said the fair generated money for the economy especially for the tourism industry.