At AWISA Ltd’s 14 May 2021 board meeting the decision was made to delay the next exhibition until 2024.
The woodworking industry worldwide plans early and makes commitments early. Many machinery companies need to know early so they can place orders for machines for the event, and many of the hardware companies source their displays from Europe and plan the construction of stands very early. AWISA has delayed the launch as far as it can but must now make a decision based on the factors that apply now. All relate to the continuing problems created by COVID-19.
State borders: Many Australian states continue to use border closures to manage COVID-!9 outbreaks. They are not making any announcements about a date when they will stop the use of closures. Over 70% of senior management visiting the show come from outside NSW.
International borders: The May Federal budget assumed that international borders will remain shut until mid-2022. Simply too close to AWISA 2022’s dates. AWISA exhibitions are dependent on large numbers of technicians, product specialists and senior overseas management coming to help build or man stands.
COVID-19 situation in Europe: The pandemic is not under control in Europe. This has a major effect on manufacturers. The Australian market has a high representation of European companies that are affected by COVID-19 factory shutdowns in their own or suppliers’ factories, or are affected by the well-reported COVID-19 driven boom in house renovation and new construction throughout the western world.
The AWISA board consists of 11 trade show enthusiasts, and this decision has been made with a great sense of disappointment.
The board considered two other options. One was to present a smaller show in 2022. The board feels that the industry knows the show as a large event with the full participation of all major suppliers. There was little enthusiasm for going small.
The other option was to run an event in 2023. Many shows cancelled this year and last year and have filled almost every available spot at ICC Sydney throughout 2023. It has to be appreciated that AWISA takes the whole building for two weeks of the readily bookable 40 weeks. (Take out December, January and Easter.) The only dates that were on offer were in late April 2023, far too close to the two major German trade shows, Interzum and Ligna.
AWISA is now focusing on AWISA 2024, which will take place at ICC Sydney, Darling Harbour from 3 – 6 July 2024.