Bella Interiors (BI) a Myanmar company that produces a spectrum of crafted rattan furniture and accessories showcased their crafts at the annual global trade fair, “Ambiente” the international summit meeting of the consumer-goods industry, which was held in Frankfurt, Germany this year from February 10 to 14. It was important for Bella Interiors to recognise the potential European and world market and the company has become a very important company from Myanmar.
Stellabeth Swezin Le, business development director of BI said the company has been interested in raising awareness of their product in the global market, especially Europe. She believes Ambiente is a pathway for her company to enter Europe.
“When we were in Frankfurt we received interest from European countries for the first time,” Stellabeth Swezin Le to Mizzima.
She said that BI has been to some Asean and Asian trade fairs, and the company has also now built a trusted brand name among European buyers. The company’s buyers from Europe connect to the Dubai market and buyers from Mauritius.
“We had no chance to join the Ambiente previously because our country did not have a Messe Frankfurt’s country-representative office, that’s why we could not present our products earlier, now we have Rep-office. The Rep office told me we must produce more for export,” Swezin Le explained.
Thet Su Hlaing, the country representative of Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH, organiser of Ambiente and other prominent trade shows, said there are many export opportunities in Myanmar and most of the country’s manufacturers are frightened to go to the global market because of the country’s background.
“Most of them are content with their present situation, so they do not go outside of Myanmar. Besides, they always think about finance, I think this is not a key point of trade promotion. So, they must change their mindset,” Thet Su Hlaing told Mizzima.
Around 4,500 exhibitors from 96 countries and approximately 145,000 buyers from 154 countries joined together at Frankfurt’s Ambiente. Among them, a total of 227 companies from nine Asean nations including Myanmar’s BI participated at the event. There were 47 firms from Thailand, 61 firms from Vietnam and 67 firms from Indonesia.
According to Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH, more than 80 percent of exhibitors usually return to the Ambient showcase every February to keep global interest.
“Here in Frankfurt, you can do your business not only in Germany but also in the world,” Stephan Kurzawski, Senior Vice President of Messe Frankfurt told Mizzima.
Bella Interiors made many preparations for the trade fair.
“According to time and circumstances in Myanmar, we did know the art of marketing because we usually focus on regular clients and we did not update our advertising catalogue. But we did not want to lower the country’s image when we came here, so we created a good quality catalogue that shows Myanmar and Myanmar products,” Stellabeth Swezin Le told Mizzima.
But she realises that innovation and design need to improve for the global market and admitted they need to study and improve quality.
“We are continuing to improve. But our country has no research and development (R&D), so we are going to develop R&D ourselves for our organisation first,” she said.