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SILMO to make APAC comeback

After coming and going from the Australian conference calendar, the SILMO global eyewear and lifestyle trade show is set to return to the Asia-Pacific region in 2023 with the launch of a Singapore event.

SILMO International, Singapore Tourism Board and MP Singapore, a marketing and event management group, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to officially launch SILMO Singapore.

In a joint statement announcing the MOU, the partners said that as larger-scale business events and activities resume over the next few years, SILMO will move to Singapore from 2023, where it will be held for subsequent editions in 2024 and 2025.

SILMO International president Mr Jerome Colin said SILMO Singapore is expected to grow into one of Asia’s leading trade shows for the optics and eyewear industry.

“Singapore, being an accessible and vibrant gateway to the Southeast Asia region will be able to target significant presence from international trade sellers and visitors, from the optical and eyewear sector industry,” he said.

“Like SILMO Paris, SILMO Singapore will also include quality programming to enrich visitors’ retail experience and insights on the latest innovations in the industry.”

The inaugural SILMO Singapore will run over three days at the Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre from 12 to 14 April 2023.

SILMO has had a presence in the Southeast Asian region since 2018, with the hosting of the ASEAN Optometric Congress along with an international trade show in Bangkok.

The MOU partners assert SILMO Singapore will be the Asian flagship edition of SILMO Paris, an international B2B eyewear and lifestyle tradeshow recognised as the global launchpad for new designs, collections, and technologies in the eyewear industry.

Singapore Tourism Board’s Mr Poh Chi Chuan, executive director of exhibitions and conferences, said the three-year MOU demonstrates the continued confidence in Singapore’s role as a leading business events capital, and a launchpad for expansion in Asia.

“Given the tremendous success of SILMO Paris and our strong collaborators for this project, we are confident that SILMO Singapore will grow into a premier platform for international and regional buyers to discover the best designs, collections, and technologies in the eyewear industry,” he said.

Mr Jason Ng, executive director of MP Singapore, said the Asia Pacific market will witness an increasing demand for fashionable eyewear.

He said this will be owing to both rising disposable income and eyewear becoming fashion accessories as well.

“This upward trend will generate tremendous opportunities for various types of eyewear products and services, and SILMO Singapore is well-positioned to leverage on these opportunities,” Ng said.

SILMO in Australia

SILMO launched in Australia five years ago, but only took place twice, in consecutive years.

The inaugural SILMO Sydney took place in 2017 at the newly opened $1 billion International Convention Centre at Darling Harbour.

The three-day tradeshow organised by Expertise Events returned the following year (2018) at the same venue. However, SILMO Sydney and ODMA’s trade event, O-Show, took place within a week of each other, causing many exhibitors to call for a more sustainable and collaborative approach to support the entire industry.

Despite this, SILMO Sydney was scheduled for July in 2019, once again at the International Convention Centre, two weeks ahead of the inaugural O=MEGA19 conference and trade event in Melbourne.

The proximity in dates and discord among event organisers led Expertise Events to cancel the 2019 SILMO Sydney optical tradeshow.

While there were plans in place for SILMO Sydney to proceed in 2020, it did not eventuate.

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