Latin America has been an emerging market for the sports nutrition industry over the past decade, but more so within the last five years. One of the most apparent signs of growth is when an in market tradeshow not only maintains their presence but, most importantly – builds upon it, year after year. I’ve always heard fantastic feedback on how many fitness enthusiasts, distributors, and the US and local domestic vendors attend the show. As it is my first year attending Expo Fitness, I was happy to report it lived up to all the hype industry folks gave it.
Expo Fitness is in its seventh year of hosting the show and is continuing to evolve. What surprised me most was the variety of products and brands at the show. Like many of the larger well-known tradeshows such as Mr. Olympia, FIBO Germany, Body Powers, etc. they are focused primarily on the sports nutrition consumer. Expo Fitness had one entire hall dedicated to natural lines and whole food products. It, of course, had a hall where sport nutrition lines displayed their stands. Many of the top tier US brands that Sportika represents were present. Some to name are GAT Sport, MuscleMeds, MHP, PowerCrunch, EVL, Nutrex Research, BPI Sports, Ronnie Coleman Signature Series, Cellucor, and more. There was a significant amount of foot traffic Saturday and Sunday, which was supported by great entertainment the booths put on. The expo was very lively and had many spots where B2B could step aside to have meetings.
To wrap it up, the most common question leading into the show and always post-show from a brand is, “Should I invest in having a booth at the show”? My answer is if you have no presence in Latin America or Colombia in specific – depending on your appetite for international business and the region itself – one year of investing in the show is excellent market exposure. Still, you must have your product sampled and a sales staff on the floor speaking with various accounts, distributors, and industry people so you can get the most out of your investment. A lot of brands have moved away from investing in stands at shows due to the costs. Sometimes as a brand, you need to weigh out the investment. If you have a good presence in the region, then investing in a stand at tradeshow may not be as necessary (depending on your level of distribution and sales).
In short, I encourage you to visit Colombia as the country is beautiful and the people are wonderful. The industry continues to change and evolve, so we all must be mindful and smart when it comes to investing properly.
Till next time, take care!
Dan Silverio, Sportika Export
Director of International Sales