By Carroll McCormickFeatures Shows
Good weather and two full exhibition halls greeted buyers at the 28th annual regional trade show in Saint-Hyacinthe this March 23 and 24.
Good weather and two full exhibition halls greeted buyers at the 28th annual regional trade show in Saint-Hyacinthe this March 23 and 24. “Quebexpo and the other shows we have done this year are all the best shows of the past 10 years,” enthuses Benoît Leroux, eastern Canada sales director for Rentquip Canada.
Rentquip, which won the CRA Supplier of the Year award for 2011, (and 2010 as well) has been attending Quebexpo for over 20 years. Commenting on the first full day of the show, Leroux says, “We are very pleased with the business so far,” before excusing himself to talk to two buyers about an MWB compactor. In one corner of the main hall, in company with other medium-sized equipment dealers such as Kubota, Plafolift, Wacker Neuson and Case is Carmix Canada Sales and Services, from Val Caron, Ont. This is the third show for owner Norm Maurice and he has already signed up for 2013. His goal is to crack the rental market with his mobile, self-loading ready mix truck and batching plants, for which he is the exclusive distributor for Canada and the United States. This could be his big year: “I spoke with one buyer who was very interested. It is very promising,” Maurice says.
It is also the third Quebexpo for Kaeser Compressors Canada, from Boisbriand, Que. It is one of four companies at the show with compressors in the 185 cubic feet per minute capacity category. “I had a couple of guys make a beeline for me. They were looking for big compressors and gathering information,” says Luc Gagnon, technical sales representative for Kaiser.
Kitty corner across the red carpet from a booth under a gleaming white party tent is National Event Supply, out of Mississauga, Ont. This is owner Dennis Heathcote’s second Quebexpo. “We sell coast to coast but Quebec is underrepresented in our clientele,” he explains. He is pleased with the show and the response to a mail out of coupons to 100 Quebec companies. Anyone visiting his booth with one of the coupons receives a free cocktail table. “We have had 12 people turn in their coupons so far,” he reveals.
Wherever you look at Quebexpo you see leveling equipment, bolt cutters, conveyors, bright blue scaffolding and floor sanders. Notable exhibitors include Granite Industries, AE Sales and Eastcan Marketing. Heavy equipment from Faresin and Haulotte reach to the ceiling in the second hall. There are thousands of products and many vendors. Clusters of buyers and sellers are everywhere, heads together, doing deals.
Maurice Filion, owner of Locaplus in Cowansville, Que., is here to replenish his supplies and look for new equipment and ideas. He is in the market for a bigger wood chipper. “We like to keep up with the latest equipment. There’s been a big change in floor covering, for example. People are using a lot of ceramics. We have to rent the cutters for ceramic tiles. There are new demands for new equipment.”
System de Fixation Phoenix, from St-Laurent, Que., displays a wide variety of nailers, staplers and compressors. A fluorescent green Flexilla air hose – a new product this year – catches the eye. The company’s bread and butter, however, is fasteners. Owner Ron Kennedy mailed out a flyer of specials before the show and buyers are arriving at his booth, completed orders in hand. “For us it is a good buying show. I have been doing shows for a long time. It is the only one where you sell a lot of equipment.”
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