Furniture First has launched an online portal for their approved supplier partners to sign up to sponsor the buying group’s annual symposium. The online signup provides an even footing for each approved vendor to participate. Tables, booths and extra exposure add-on sponsorships will be sold on a first come first served basis. “We’ve sold out of sponsorships each year for the past four years,” commented Darby Hawkins, Event Planner for Furniture First. “We have a limited amount of space at the hotel. We want to accommodate as many vendors as possible, but we have to put a limit on the number of spaces. Several sponsorships slots are in high-demand.” While the online sponsorship portal is designed to alleviate confusion over which vendor claimed which sponsorship spot first, a paper form is also being distributed to approved vendors.
The 2017 Symposium will take place in Phoenix, Arizona May 15 – 17. The JW Marriott Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa will serve as the venue for the event. “We like to have the symposium in a fun place where our members can relax while they work on their business, not in it,” commented Andrew Kauffman, COO of Furniture First.
The final agenda and list of speakers is still in development, but the group is known throughout the industry for engaging vendors and retailers with informative topics from entertaining speakers. The theme for the 2017 event is “Igniting Ideas, Sharing Solutions.” Approximately half of Furniture First’s members attend the symposium each year.
In 2016 several Furniture First Members were asked what they got from attending the group’s symposium in San Antonio, Texas. A video of their responses was incorporated in the micro website for the 2017 symposium.
The location of Furniture First’s symposiums are set and booked up to two years in advance. The 2018 Symposium will take place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and a venue for the 2019 the location should be settled soon.