by Nai-Wen Chang, Fastener World
Fastener Expo Shanghai 2019 attracted more than 800 fastener producers and equipment suppliers and was visited by over 30,000 decision makers, purchasers and engineers from fastener distributing/trading, automotive, auto parts, construction, machinery, furniture, aerospace, railway, shipbuilding industries. This year, more new e-commerce platforms came to exhibit during the show, which seems to create a trend in the domestic fastener sales market of China.
Celebrating the 10th Anniversary, Fastener Expo Shanghai 2019 held a “Fastener Gala Night” on the opening day, in which the “Most Loyal Exhibitor Award” and the “Largest Contributing Exhibitor Award” were awarded. The theme of the Expo this year was focused on “Strengthening Export and Sales of High Value Added Products in the Domestic Market” while several sessions on topics like fastener markets, business models, technology and AI manufacturing were also held.
The booths of Taiwan exhibitors brought by Fastener World were right on the intersection of major aisles. All visitors to Fastener World’s booth were of high interest in the latest issue of “China Fastener World Magazine” and recognized it as the best and effective approach to locating suppliers best suited to their needs. During the event, many high-ranking purchasers also expressed their will to subscribe to Fastener World’s publications and asked for free copies disseminated at the Expo.
Fastener World’s correspondent onsite visited 10 Chinese leading fastener brands and asked them about the quality of visitors, their viewpoints to the current Chinese market and countermeasures to survive trade disputes. Most companies responded that the visitor flow was kind of influenced by the too-close dates of two similar fastener shows in Shanghai in the same month. In terms of international trade disputes, most exhibitors responded that companies must maintain a certain level of product quality in order to pass all possible challenges.
Short interviews with exhibitors
SHANGHAI FAST-FIX RIVET:
Up to 80% of our products are exported to European and U.S. regions and N. American particularly represents around 25% of our total export. The share of high strength structural parts in our product portfolio is also increasing year after year. This year, the visitor flow is acceptable as it was last year. Perhaps we’ll still register for participation next year.
FOSHAN CITY GUANGQINGCHANG METAL PLASTIC:
The dates of similar shows held over the past two years are too close to each other, which seems to have influenced the participation in each show. The total number of visitors coming this year was quite normal and most of the visitors were domestic Chinese. In the future we hope to expand our international sales, this is also why we established a foreign sales unit this year with a clear aim to penetrate into more different markets.
TONG MING ENTERPRISE:
We noticed that there is a declining trend in the number of exhibitors who are manufacturers or focus on face-to-face sales. Instead, we noticed that the number of exhibitors who focus on sales through their own business-to-business e-commerce platforms is increasing and most of these companies are factories. The B2B platforms are like a 24/7 online exhibition, which has become more and more popular these days.
NINGBO ABC FASTENERS:
The visitor flow is basically satisfying to us and most visitors coming to our booth are from the Middle East, Italy and other European countries. Visitors show high interest in our anchoring products and said that they will come to this show next year.
FOSHAN NANHAI SAILUK RIVET:
We feel quite satisfied with the visitor flow, which, we think, is not so much different from the record last year. Visitors comprise 50% foreigners and 50% local Chinese. Foreign visitors are mostly from Europe. Facing the current economic challenges, we should be active to optimize our internal structure and keep high product quality in order to get through any difficulties and keep our brand to continuously shine bright.
DONGGUAN HONGHUI METAL:
At this moment we feel focusing on the development in China is really important, as China is the world’s biggest market. Accordingly, we need to strengthen our presence, offer more competitive prices, maintain the required quality and increase the added value of our products in the future.
SRC METAL (SHANGHAI):
Our plan to set up a new factory in Thailand is mainly resulted from the concern over China-USA trade dispute, which is likely to influence our sales to the U.S., as we are an export-oriented company. Foreign visitors coming to our booth this year are mostly from India. We’ve participated in this show for the 10th consecutive year and are considering a change maybe next year.
ZHEJIANG HYSTRON AUTO PARTS:
Visitors coming to our booth this year are mostly from trading companies and we are very pleased to meet these old friends on-site. The U.S. market represents around 10% of our turnover and most of the products sold to the U.S. are non-standard parts, which cannot be replaced easily. As a result, we are not influenced a lot by the trade war this time.
The main purpose of our exhibiting at the show is for meeting our loyal clients, such as some from Italy and Bulgaria. In addition, we also noticed that the number of exhibitors having their own e-commerce platforms is much more than it was before and more young generations began their careers in this industry. The trade war between China and USA has forced some exhibitors previously focusing on the U.S. market to turn to Europe, so we do feel increasing pressure from the price cutting competition.
HAIYAN WEISHI FASTENER:
We met many visitors from different countries at this show and exchanged a lot of info with them. Next year we definitely will come to exhibit, as the entire industry is going into the period of adjustment, as well as the trade war, less market options and high inventory. If we’d like to survive the period, we have to keep stable order intake for sure.
What Will be the Trend for Future Global Fastener Industry? EFDA: More professional and concentrated.
by Nai-Wen Chang, Fastener World
On the opening day of Fastener Expo Shanghai 2019, EFDA Vice President Gian Marco Dalpane was invited to give a speech on the global economic development trend and its influence on fastener production, application and trade. According to Mr. Dalpane, future fastener manufacturing will definitely be automated, so manufacturers must focus more on the management chain and continuously develop better fastening solutions.
Mr. Dalpane added that future requirements for fasteners will be more stringent and only products with zero defects can survive the market with keen competition. With these requirements, fastener manufacturers will definitely face two important trends in the future: professionalism and concentration.
Professionalism can be divided into two aspects. One is digitalization, and the other is internationalization. Manufacturing procedures and technology must be digitalized, which is good to machine-to-machine management, while purchasing and sales must be internationalized in order to extend reach out of the domestic market to the whole world. Concentration denotes mergers and acquisitions among companies. Fastener enterprises conducting various ways of integration will face the issue of how to manage companies with different backgrounds. On the other hand, as the world’s situation continues to change and there comes more red tape pertaining to the laws and Customs regulations, certification has become much more important in global marketing.
Mr. Dalpane pointed out in his speech that the world’s fastener sales are EUR 5.5 billion a year and Asia represents a lion’s share, followed by Europe with sales amounting to around EUR 1 billion. Thus far, Europe has imposed no fastener AD duties against any Asian country and its demand for fasteners continues to grow. To view from the EU’s 8 major fastener import origins in Asia, China’s share increased by 2%, while the share of Taiwan dropped by 3%.
Major industries in Europe showing the most significant fastener demand are: automotive, aerospace and railroad (representing 50% of the total demand), followed by construction (20%) and mechanical fasteners. Mr. Dalpane said in his expectations toward 2019-2020 that EFDA will make every effort to recruit more member in order to create more powerful influence and strengthen its role in speaking for the interest of all members. It will also continue to concern about the development of AD measures and object to any form of trade protectionism. Last but not least, he told every fastener company in attendance, “Any objects cannot be assembled without fasteners, so if fasteners cannot be sold through proper approaches, that ‘ll be an end of the whole world.”