Speaking to Drinks International at the May 20-23-show, Charles Sichel, export director of Sichel, said: “Every year we think this will be our last show but fewer and fewer of our competitors are here. It gives us a head start.”
The number of visitors – which exceeded organiser Brintex’s reduced target of 10,000 – fell by around 25% this year from about 13,400 in 2012.
Even so, exhibitors such as Cristina Follador, marketing director at Follador prosecco, said the Copestick Murray stand, from which her brand exhibited, had been “very busy this year” and said she would return next year.
Meanwhile Delphine Glangetas, head winemaker for Les Vignoble Foncalieu, described the first day of the show as “crazily busy” with back-to-back appointments all day.
After 13 years at Excel in east London, the show will return to Olympia in west London next year.
Sichel added: “It’s always good business here at LIWF – next year we will be back at Olympia – it’ll be back to basics.”