By Kenny Chee
CONSUMERS are expected to spend more dough at this year's Comex consumer electronics show than they did last year, with the economy showing signs of picking up.
Mr Melvin Koh, general manager of organiser Eastern Directories, said that total sales of S$58 million are expected at Comex this year, an increase over the S$56 million made last year.
"While some exhibitors might have seen a slowdown in day-to-day sales earlier this year, many now feel there's a recovery," he said.
Exhibitor Carrefour said its sales of electronic products were "somewhat slower" at the beginning of the year but it has seen "consistent growth" overall.
"We believe that many shoppers are anticipating the Comex show and, thus, it should do well," its spokesman said, adding that the market outlook also seemed brighter.
Another exhibitor, HP Singapore, said: "Consumer purchases over the past few months have been encouraging, and we expect that the public will respond positively to our offerings at Comex."
A June report by market-research firm GfK had said that sales of consumer electronics, including portable media players and camcorders, fell 11.8 per cent in the first half of the year, compared to the same period last year.
Nevertheless, exhibitors are upbeat, especially since past information-technology fairs have done well, even when the recession was deeper.
In March, the IT Show - the first IT fair of the year - drew S$58.5 million in sales, S$4 million more than last year when the economy was more buoyant.
A first-time Comex exhibitor, computer retail-store Digital Asia, believes that its sales at the show will be good, as its sales in recent months have been stronger than that at the start of the year.
"We had predicted that monthly sales this year would be worse than last year's due to the financial crisis, but we were surprised by our double-digit growth for most of this year," said Ms Sandy Lai, the store's general manager.
Comex is on from today to Sunday at Suntec Singapore from 12pm to 9pm daily. Admission is free.
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