The city of Cannes was up bright and early this morning as it prepared for the flux of 8,600 visitors to the Palais des Festivals. I arrived shortly after 8.00 am and was surprised to see the number of people pouring into the exhibition zone so early. Within one hour, I was back in Times Square, desperately looking for some kind of traffic light to help ease the flow of excited attendees as they scurried off in a multitude of directions, pen and paper in hand and ready to do business.
Today should have labeled the ‘French Cities Day.’ The Docks of Marseille, who had a beautiful Pavilion outside, not to mention great tote (with a massive cube of french soap), gave a well attended press presentation. A few hours later, Marseille gave another press conference on their New Shopping and Cultural District, the creation of new prominent cultural and tourist facilities. The city of Lyon presented the results of the 9th consumer survery and commercial development policy. Lille and Mulhouse were also alive and buzzing with news, inviting clients and visitors for discussion at their stand.
I was very lucky to catch a glimpse of the Power Meetings being held in Lerins Hall: retailers vs. asset managers. I had a word with Guillermo Calvo Gonzallez, Director of Expansion at Marypaz, who said this is his 3rd year at MAPIC, but 1st time participating in special networking formats such as Power Meetings. I caught him in between rotations, but he was clearly “optimistic about the business contacts he had just met, eager to get back to the table and would definitely sign up again next year.” I’ll have to follow up on his story in a few months and see how things develop!
An excellent conference session on emerging world’s retail hotspots showcased Brazilian Franchise Association’s Ricardo Camargo, who made a strong case for the future of retail in Brazil with strong statistics on unemployment (currently at (5,7%) and new retailer development in 2012 at 8%. Check ou the full video!
Lastly, I took a cruise upstairs for the New Retailer Cocktail, where first time retailers at MAPIC got the chance to meet one another over an informal cocktail overlooking the Majestic Barriére, closing the final hours of the day in style.
Tweet of the Day
Image: Image & Co.