Next year there will be further changes to the franchising expo landscape as the events return to a weekend format.
The Franchising & Business Opportunities Expo has just returned to Brisbane after a Covid-induced three-year break. However despite the show’s absence from the Queensland scene, visitors numbers failed to meet pre-pandemic levels.
The two-day expo was particularly quiet on the Friday, with visitor numbers slightly up on Saturday.
Exhibition manager Fiona Stacey told Franchise Executives the post-Covid change in workplace habits has had an impact.
“The visitor numbers have been very quiet, but whether it’s because the first show in Brisbane since 2019, or the different formula of Friday/Saturday, is not clear.
“It’s been an uphill battle for companies to get their staff back in the office on a Friday. While we trialled the Friday/Saturday formula, with this change of workplace routine, there just aren’t as many people in the city.”
Next year the expos will return to the traditional weekend timing after organisers Specialised Events called time on the Friday trial.
“The proven Saturday/Sunday model brings in visitors,” said Stacey.
Changes to expo days, dates
Next year Specialised has scheduled only two expos. The Melbourne show, previously in the March calendar, will now take place on 6-7 May, followed by the Sydney expo in August.
Stacey said “The next Brisbane show will be in early 2024.”
The event had been postponed and rescheduled a number of times since 2019.
Brisbane expo attracts new brands as well as regular exhibitors
Brands exhibiting at a franchising expo for the first time included brand new franchise recycling concept Junk, Foodco, Solomon’s Flooring, Housemaids, Mighty Fine, Pest Control and US bakery chain Cinnabon.
The new faces at the expo joined regular exhibitors such as Craveable Brands, Dymocks, Quest Apartment Services, Poolwerx, Pizza Hut, United Franchise Group, Appliance Tagging Services, Soul Origin, Xpresso Mobile Cafe.