22nd September 2009
The idea of any company doubling turnover in the current economic climate seems pretty unlikely, but that is the case for one customer of Coker Exhibition Systems.
Chris Coker, managing director of the exhibition furniture supplier, said that one of his clients has reported receiving enough new orders at a recent show to increase takings twofold.
Mr Coker insisted that the example demonstrates the value of showcases even in a downturn.
"Quality exhibition stands and graphics, together with the correct lighting, make all the difference," he asserted.
Coker Exhibitions Systems has enjoyed a successful year so far, with another client winning the Prince Philip Award for Research and Development in the Field of Dairy Farming for the most practical, relevant and best-presented technical demonstration or exhibit at the Dairy Event and Livestock show.
Mr Coker said that the company has seen loyalty from its existing customers, with orders holding level compared with last year.
"It's not all doom and gloom, we've been pushing on with a range of new innovative products. Rather than stand still we have put these new products together and gone out looking for new things we can get involved with," he explained.
Fold-flat furniture is among the new products Coker Exhibition Systems has been developing, with the company developing its own exclusive designs for the equipment.
The firm, which supplies everything from pop up stands to literature racks, as well as revolving displays and audio visual staging, has also moved into niche areas the within exhibition furniture supply sector.
"We've become quite a major player in gantry systems and we have a factory in Taiwan making these exclusively for us," Mr Coker explained. "We've expanded out range and our relationship immensely and hopefully we'll be looking for agents to sell our products in the future."
The firm has developed an exhibition gantry display system which can be used inside or out and can be put together easily without nuts or bolts. The design is versatile, so the joints can be fixed together to create various shapes and a number of accessories can be used, including graphic panel backdrops, lighting systems and back wall or overhead PVC banners.
"My feeling is that when the recession is over, we're going to be so busy because we've managed to hold off a recession almost entirely here because of the extra things we've got involved with," he added.
In fact, Mr Coker believes that his company will achieve such success once the country emerges from the downturn that he will be forced to take on new staff to cope with increased demand.
Coker Exhibition Systems has also been working on a variety of promotional efforts, including using its website and mail-outs to customers.
In addition, Mr Coker asserted that exhibiting at shows has also proved fruitful, with the company taking its wares to the Business Link show in Basingstoke next month.
"Our customers do so well through exhibitions, so that's one of the things we try to do ourselves. It's finding the right one and finding the time, but when you do, it works," he concluded.