Dallas Market Center Boasts Record-Setting June, Surge of New Buyer Traffic
Last month was a historic one for Dallas Market Center. The B2B trade center and wholesale marketplace for the home décor, gifts, lighting, housewares, holiday/floral, apparel and accessories markets experienced its biggest summer month of buyer traffic in more than ten years, with tens of thousands of buyers from across the U.S. converging upon the Apparel & Accessories Market, Total Home & Gift Market, KidsWorld and Lightovation events.
Spanning 5 million square feet of exhibit space, including hundreds of permanent showrooms and hundreds of booths in temporary expo space, the June shows experienced a 75% increase in first-time buyers compared to its June 2019 shows, a number never before seen by the marketplace.
Dallas Market Center also drew in more buyers from geographic regions outside of its core trading area of Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas, with a 31% increase in buyers from the West, a 44% increase in Midwest buyers and a 58% increase in buyers from the Southeast, with total attendance from these regions growing at a greater rate than in more than a decade.
“June was a highly successful culmination of the efforts we have undertaken over many months and a strong partnership with our exhibitors and reps to create a safe, inspiring marketplace,” explained Cindy Morris, Dallas Market Center president and CEO. “The word is out and the momentum is incredible. We are a marketplace attracting buyers from across the country, and we are the new home for thousands of buyers, from Seattle to Miami.”
Here are a few highlights from the June shows:
- Held June 15-18, the Apparel & Accessories Market saw a 48% increase in buyers compared to June 2019 and welcomed more buyers from across the country. Exhibit space was sold out, with overflow exhibitors occupying temporary trade show space created to meet demand.
- Total Home & Gift Market, held June 23-29, welcomed more buyers than in several years, including a 40% increase in new buyers and record-setting increases in buyer attendance from the Midwest, Southeast and West.
- Running June 23-26, Lightovation returned to a full format show, attracting 90% of pre-pandemic-level attendance. The lighting show also saw the debut of new and expanded showrooms from leading brands.
- KidsWorld, which took place June 23-29, saw a more than 50% increase in buyers, including retailers from 40 states.
Additionally, Dallas Market Center officials said that the marketplace’s daily design traffic remains at historic levels.
Buyers with significant influence and purchasing power who visited the marketplace included single and multi-location retailers; buying groups; major stores and interior design businesses as well as more than 40 leading associations in housewares and gourmet; lighting; independent retail; interior design; toys; builders; home accents; gift; floral; holiday; spa; sustainability; nursery and landscape.
“The major store buyers visiting in June, representing some of the largest volume retailers in the U.S., were eager to discover new products across every neighborhood of our marketplace,” said Eva Walsh, executive vice president of retail development and leasing at Dallas Market Center. “We began outreach months ago to support their buying trips.”
Inside the marketplace, a strong pulse of energy, excitement and confidence was palpable, with
showroom and temporary exhibitors ecstatic about the positive momentum of robust traffic, serious buyers eager to write orders and significant boosts in sales.
“June was amazing,” said Mike Stevenson with Dressed2Kill apparel and accessories. “We saw stores from all over the country, including stores come in from all over California. This has been phenomenal, [and] compared to last June we are up at least 60 percent on orders.”
Getting a jump on new styles, filling depleted inventories and efficiently shopping across lifestyle categories under one convenient roof were some of the key reasons buyers gave for visiting the June shows this year.
“The one thing I really like about the Dallas Market is it’s a comprehensive shopping experience,” said Keith Manoy, co-owner of Dallas boutique Indigo 1745. “We are an apparel store, but we also try to find unique gifts and accessories, and at Dallas Market we have it all.”