The return of Biesse, SCM, Stiles and Weinig to the International Woodworking Fair (IWF) this August is good news for North America's biggest woodworking show and for the North American industry.
Each of these marquee names of the woodworking industry issued press releases in rapid succession this week announcing their individual plans to exhibit at IWF, August 22-25 at the Georgia World Congress Center.
Just a shade over two years ago, Woodworking Network reported on the decisions these same companies had made not to exhibit at IWF 2010. One of the columns I devoted to the trauma of the moment was titled, "Economy takes its toll on IWF." In it I wrote, "The prolonged economic crunch has particularly been hard felt by manufacturers of industrial woodworking machinery. Not only have some potential customers gone out of business, many more have dramatically reduced their capital expenditures. On top of this, there has never been a greater glut of used woodworking machinery on the market to compete against. We’ve heard that some of the large machinery companies saw U.S. equipment sales drop by as much as 80% last year."
The market is no where near where it was for IWF 2008, staged just before the nation's financial meltdown. But seeing these four recognized technology leaders ready to take part at IWF is an encouraging sign that times are much improved for manufacturers and distributors of industrial woodworking equipment. As Federico Broccoli, president and CEO of Biesse America and Canada, put it, Biesse is coming back to IWF "due to tangible signs of recovery we see in our industry."
With Biesse, SCM, Stiles and Weinig back in the IWF fold, we can all focus our attention and energy on preparing for a stronger, better IWF 2012.
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