TAIPEI, Taiwan (BRAIN)—Taipei Cycle officials said Wednesday that they would consider moving the show to an earlier date, possibly in January, beginning in 2009.
“We are seriously considering the dates,” said Walter Yeh, executive vice president of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, or TAITRA. “A lot of people are talking about this.”
Yeh said one of the most important considerations would be the wishes of the Taiwan Bicycle Exporters Association, which represents the country’s major bicycle manufacturers. He is scheduled to attend the association’s annual meeting next week and said the timing of the show is one of the topics on the association’s agenda.
Because of the Chinese New Year’s holiday, which typically falls in early February, the bicycle show would have to take place either in late February or mid-January.
If the show stays in its usual time slot, the 2009 event is expected to be March 16-19. An official announcement on the 2009 dates will be made during the upcoming show in March.
Many international bicycle brands say the Taipei Cycle show is too late for their spec’ing process, which for some is essentially completed by the end of the year.
Instead, component suppliers and product managers have begun attending a fast-growing number of informal “mini-shows” in Taichung during the first week of December.
The 2008 Taipei Cycle show, which is March 13-16, will attract an unusual degree of national interest because it is the first convention to take place in Taipei’s $110 million Nangang Exhibition Hall, which has been under construction for nearly three years.
Top government officials—possibly including Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian—are expected to attend opening ceremonies.
Moses Yen, executive director of the exhibition department, said construction crews undertook a monumental task of making up four months of construction during the past 18 months. They succeeded, he said, and the Nangang center is on track to be completed on time.
Adding to the complexity of opening the new convention center, TAITRA is also going to oversee another show at the same time. While the 2008 Taipei Cycle show takes place at Nangang, the Taipei International Sporting Goods Show will run at the existing convention center.
Yeh said the shows are expected to attract many overlapping buyers and should bring about 10,000 international visitors to Taipei for those four days.
Frequent shuttle buses will link the two convention sites, with a trip taking between 15 and 30 minutes, depending on traffic.