Zana at NY NOW 2017

Update Aug 2020: Our co-founder Robyn has released an E-book all about applying for DTI EMIA funding to take your South African business to trade shows overseas! Take a look hereApplying DTI EMIA FUNDING

We have just returned to Cape Town from a very successful NYNOW Summer 2017. For those who don’t know, NYNOW is a huge trade show held in NYC at the Javits center (a giant convention center.) The show has multiple floors and categories when it comes to products and it caters to shop owners and buyers from all over who want to place wholesale orders.

When we started Zana 5 years ago we went into it planning to manufacture and sell online to customers (both locally and internationally.) As time went on shops and buyers began to ask about wholesale and so, as to not turn down business, we went down that road and I’m really happy we did as wholesale makes up a large portion of our business now.

Over the years we have established wholesale accounts with some really great shops in the US & Canada who stock our products. Doing NYNOW this year was really to meet and introduce our brand to new buyers and also connect with existing buyers (meet face to face for a change rather than only over email!)

When it came to planning our booth Sue was on it, if you’ve ever met Sue you will know she has a plan and she makes things happen. I designed the idea of the color shapes to fit the products which Sue hand cut and made with plastic, paint. They looked amazing, we received so many compliments at the show for them.  With so many booths at NYNOW we wanted to do something eye catching and noticeable and I think it worked!

The rest of the booth we knew we wanted shelves and hooks, which we took with and decided on the arrangement there. After a long day of setting up we took a sleepy evening trip to Ikea in Brooklyn to buy a table, plants, stools, cushion inners and boxes made the final touches for our stand. We kept it quite simple because anything we bought we couldn’t bring home.

We were very happy with the way the booth turned out and overall the show was very successful.

On a more personal note Sue and I also had the best time exploring NYC a few days before the show and in the evenings. We drank Starbucks, ate Chipotle, saw the Statue of Liberty and by the end we even sort of understood the number system of the streets in NYC. If everything goes to plan we hope to be back in 2018.

Huge thank you to everyone who wished us well online, your support helps us to keep going.