Q. Please introduce yourself
A. I am Abhay Sheth, C.E.O – Abhay Sheth Technologies. I have graduated in mechanical engineering. I started my career as a designer engineer at one of the Indian companies and worked there for 15 years after which I started working in a big trading company to market the plastic machinery for almost 9 years and then I joined hands with a European company, where I was appointed as the Managing Director. After working there for almost four years and six months, in 2001, I took decision to start my own business. My first business engagement was with a US Company, later I got better opportunity from China and after 5 years, I took an agency from China.
Q.What are the major marketing platforms which you use for your business?
A. First is exhibition, since this kind of exhibition comes under the category of Commercial exhibitions, generally called trade fairs, trade shows or expos, that are usually organized so that organizations in a specific interest or industry can showcase and demonstrate their latest products, service, study activities of rivals and examine recent trends and opportunities. Second is through your contacts in the industries and relationship which you have developed so far with your customers.
Q. Tentatively, what portion of your marketing budget do you keep aside for an exhibition?A. It depends from exhibition to exhibition. As far as our company is concerned we are connected with flexible packaging industries, with plastic packaging industries and if the scope of business is good, then the size of our booth also varies from 55 sqmt to 200 sqmt.
Q. According to you, what is the significance of participating in an exhibition?
A. Business! And also to keep our trust with the customers, that whenever they visit an exhibition, they could see that we are there for them. Exhibition is a mark of our presence in the industry. They can discuss any problem as well as get to know new technological advancements and moreover feedback taken by the customers help us to improve ourselves.
Q. What all exhibition do you participate in a year, nationally and internationally?
A. We are at the India Plast currently. Next we will be going to Mumbai in Plastivision which brings the entire plastic industry under one roof. From Machinery, Raw Materials, Finished Goods Manufacturers to Chemicals, Resins, Compound makers and ancillary industries like Molds, Dies, Automation, recycling and more; there are vast opportunities for everyone. After that we are going to ChinaPlast, an International Exhibition on Plastics and Rubber Industry. Post that we will prepare to participate in the K- show.
Q. What are your three favourite trade shows which you personally attend?
A. K show, Chinaplast and PlastIndia.
Q. What kind of training do you provide to booth staffs/hostess & what are their roles & responsibilities?
A. I used to hire hostess in the beginning of my career but after that I found that they have not contributed much from their side. I have seen in Delhi as well as in Mumbai that the first two days they are serious to work, but after that they show less attention. They lack capability to judge the visitors, who are running here and there. Here, objective of the hostess is just to earn the money and this industry needs professionals, who are well trained to deal with the customers. We don’t mind paying them Rs. 5000 per day but they should know how to deal with our client professionally and not for just a general inquiry or to share pleasantries. We are spending a hefty amount so reaching the right customer is our prime objective. We have not assigned the job to any hostess this time. I have come across some trained hostesses who were having experience in sales but, I found them not showing seriousness to the job, so I said no to them as well. They have so many excuses and breaks during the work which is not a good sign of professionalism. See, this stall cost to me Rs. 40 lacs. The booth preparation cost me another 12 lacs. So, if you spend five thousand per day on hostess, the five day cost is nothing against the cost what we are spending in the exhibition. If there is any institute working on training of such staffs, I am ready to render free service anywhere in India. I am ready to travel.
Q. On an average, how much time, effort and resources are spent on a 3 day exhibition
A. For simple booth and display, 2-3 days is enough for the fabricator and if machines are installed then it would take a week. This time we have not installed machines here.
Q. What is your feedback about this show? If you have to rate the show on the scale of 1 to 10, then how much would you rate?
A. Excellent, I have already booked 6 orders so far and I am looking forward for more in coming two days.