Furniture Manufacturer Got Grant to Exhibit at Trade Show & Show Participation Generated New Revenue of 10 Times the Investment
A medium-sized manufacturer (120 employees) of furniture for the hospitality industry based in the Greater Toronto area, traditionally exhibited at several leading industry trade shows in the United States in order to attract new customers. However, due to its limited marketing budget, the company could not afford to exhibit at some of the most popular and lucrative shows in the industry. The company contacted Fair Grant Writing (FGW) to help obtain Canadian government grants to be used to pay for exhibiting at two major trade shows – one in New York and one in Las Vegas.
Fair Grant Writing took into consideration both the company’s trade show budget and its ambitious goals in identifying two appropriate government programs that would pay for 33% and 50%, respectively, of the funding for the two trade shows. FGW worked quickly and efficiently to put the two grant applications together – with only minimal time commitments required of the company’s executive team to discuss the company and its needs.
For the big trade show in New York, the furniture manufacturer received an upfront lump sum from the Canadian government to pay for one-third of the cost of the booth, marketing materials, catalogs, airfare and local accommodations for company representatives attending the show. As a result of exhibiting at the show, the company signed a multi-year contract with a new customer within just three months following the show. The value of this single contract alone was ten times greater than its direct investment in the trade show (excluding the amount funded by the grant). In addition, the company was negotiating orders with two additional clients that it met at the New York show.
The company’s participation in the Las Vegas trade show was even more productive. It secured three new customers in the U.S. and one new customer in the Caribbean. The three new US customers are Virgin Hotels, MGM Hotels and Caesar’s Palace Hotel. The fourth new customer is the Ritz Carlton in Aruba. Total new business from these four relationships was $2.7 million.
Also as a result of exhibiting at the Las Vegas show, the company was developing a new relationship with a large client in the Bahamas – the Baha Mar Hyatt Hotel. This potential client requested a quote for furnishing 10,000 hotel rooms, which, if consummated could result in an additional $4 million to $5 million in sales over two years.
“Fair Grant Writing saved us a great deal of time and energy in seeking funding for our trade show strategy,” said a company official. “They really know the government-grant-funding terrain inside out and have relationships with a wide range of government grant-funding agencies. They are very thorough and timely in their approach to completing the grant application process. And they didn’t charge us any fee until the grants were approved. What more could you ask?”