OFFPRICE Show Experiences Resurgence In Buyer Traffic, Exceeds Expectations
After an 18-month hiatus, OFFPRICE Show returned to Las Vegas Fashion Week with a resurgence in buyer traffic, fueling cautious optimism for its 2022 shows. Although event participation wasn’t yet in line with pre-pandemic numbers, the biannual bargain apparel, accessories and footwear event still exceeded attendee expectations.
Held Aug. 7-10 at the Las Vegas Convention Center in close proximity to an array of Fashion Week trade shows, OFFPRICE Show remains the largest U.S. trade show dedicated to discount fashion, boasting approximately 450 exhibitors and 12,000 buyers in “normal” years.
In 2019, the August OFFPRICE Show attracted 5,552 attendees and 431 exhibitors spanning 119,334 sq. ft. at the Sands Expo & Convention Center, according to the 2019 TSNN Top Trade Shows List.
“We really didn’t know what to expect,” said Tricia Barglof, executive director of OFFPRICE, which is owned by U.K.-based Tarsus Group. “We knew there was pent-up demand for face-to-face meetings due to supply-chain issues. Retailers are looking for in-stock inventory that can ship quickly—that’s what our vendors are known for—but since the [Nevada state] mask mandate went into effect right before the show, we weren’t sure how it would affect traffic.”
Although several larger vendors and retailers weren’t able to attend the show due to travel restrictions and COVID-19 concerns, the smaller suppliers enjoyed their time in the spotlight, with many disclosing 25% of traffic as new business or new to OFFPRICE.
“The OFFPRICE Show is the most writing [business] show we do,” said Exhibitor David Davila of World-Famous Sports. “People need product, from independent stores to large retailers, [and] they may not know what they want going in, but they do know they want value. With the product and pricing you find here, even as a vendor, I walk around to see if I can find something I can use in my inventory.”
The show also benefited from pent-up demand for in-person business between exhibitors looking to sell their wares and attendees seeking product inventory and new vendors.
“To miss the last two shows was really tough,” said Attendee Francisco DeiTos of Alko Distributors. “OFFPRICE is unique because our most important vendors are here under one roof. There are always new vendors to see. Normally we try to meet with five new vendors each show, but this time we’re having meetings with seven or eight new vendors.”
Despite the ongoing challenges faced with COVID-19 and the Delta variant, having Las Vegas Fashion Week convene was a positive sign that the industry is determined to get back to business, with health and safety as a priority. To keep all participants safe at OFFPRICE, the show closely followed the Trust Tarsus health and hygiene framework, Barglof added.
“Our OFFPRICE Market held last February in Orlando proved we could align with the rest of Fashion Week to create an environment where health and safety was our top priority, and all those involved felt comfortable,” she said.
Headed back to its former venue at The Venetian Expo (formerly the Sands Expo) in February 2022, the OFFPRICE Show will once again offer a valuable marketplace to those needing to source product, make valuable connections and write orders. The exact show dates have yet to be announced.