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Record KBIS 2024 Shows Jump in International Exhibitors

NKBA Global Connect drives new-to North America kitchen and bath brands at recent 2024 KBIS, which posted record attendance and a big uptick in international exhibitors.

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The recent 60th edition of the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) proved to be one of the most successful, with record-breaking attendance numbers and a big uptick in international exhibitors.

Co-located with the International Builders Show (IBS), KBIS, the largest kitchen and bath show in North America and part of Design and Construction Week, is owned by the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), which represents nearly 50,000 North American kitchen and bath industry professionals.

This year’s show, which ran from February 27-29, recorded the following numbers:

·       117,000 DCW registered visitors

·       41,500 KBIS registered visitors

·       46 percent of KBIS attendees were new to the event

·       More than 670 KBIS exhibitors (a 30 percent increase from 2023)

·       More than 260 NEW KBIS exhibitors (a 40 percent increase from 2023)

·       More than 200 KBIS international exhibitors (a 35 percent increase from 2023)

NKBA Global Connect Impact on KBIS

NKBA Global Connect, the omni-directional NKBA international business development program, designed to minimize the risk for international brands entering the North American kitchen and bath market, helped to facilitate the increase in international exhibitors and attendees participating in KBIS.

Initiatives and activations including the Global Connect Lounge, Global Connect Kiosks, the International Delegation Program, the Global Connect Strategic Alliance Partner Forum, and the International Pavilions from UK, Germany, and Brazil were drivers of much of the increased international attendance.

Below are the NKBA Global Connect Programs and their turnouts at KBIS 2024:

The International Delegation Program—This year’s International Delegation Program welcomed more than 80 Kitchen and Bath industry professionals, from 14 countries, to Las Vegas to learn about the North American kitchen and bath market. The program included VIP attendance at roundtable luncheons covering topics such as “The Importance of the Designer in North America,” and “Go-to-Market Strategies for the North American Market,” as well as the NKBA “State of the Association/State of the Industry” featuring updates on the North American economy, housing, and remodeling trends. Additionally, Delegates participated in the NKBA Design + Industry Awards event, DCW Opening Ceremonies and a variety of show floor programs and events over the three-day show.

The Strategic Alliance Partner Forum—The inaugural NKBA Global Connect Strategic Alliance Partner Forum was hosted by NKBA’s Chief Global Relations Officer, Suzie Williford at KBIS 2024. This idea and information exchange offered each partner the opportunity to present their 2024 initiatives, programs and major agenda items for the foreseeable future. The goal of the program is to continue to offer a platform for sharing and information exchanges between associations and organizations driving the kitchen and bath industry worldwide.

Participants included Alexander Oswald of the German Association of the Furniture Industry VDM, Tom Reynolds of the UK Bathroom Manufacturers Association (BMA), Fabio Cruz of Centrorochas - The Brazilian Association of Natural Stone Exporters, David Ventris-Field of Lyrical Communications - producers of UK’s InstallerSHOW K+B, Bill Darcy of the NKBA, Carolina Giobbi of the Italian-based components and accessories show, SICAM, Volker Irle of the German Association for the Modern Kitchen AMK all presented at the forum.

The NKBA Global Connect Strategic Alliance Partners comprise several international organizations and associations, representing kitchen and bath manufacturer members who serve the residential kitchen and bath industry.

The Global Connect Lounge—The Global Connect Lounge served as a hub for all things Global Connect, hosting a series of spotlight presentations, panel discussions and presentations addressing the Global Connect mission.

International brands including Global Connect Kiosk participants Concelo Storage Solutions, Schott Specialty and Ceramic Glass, Dekker Specialty Worktops, SICAM Expo for International Components and Accessories, and the Ukraine Lviv Furnishing and Furniture Sector, presented their innovative products and brand stories.

German downdraft ventilation and cooking brand BORA hosted a panel discussion on “The Thoughtful Kitchen – Healthy Spaces and Happy Places,” followed by another panel discussion, sponsored by Richelieu, featuring Germany’s ELEKTRA Lighting Solutions called ‘Seeing the Light’ - Exploring International Lighting Design Trends.

The Global Connect Kiosks—Six Global Connect Kiosks were established as part of the Global Connect Pavilion, allowing international manufacturers and strategic partner organizations to test KBIS as a platform for advancing business interests in North America.

Participants included Concelo from New Zealand showing their innovative waste bin system; Dekker from the Netherlands presented their sustainable kitchen and bathroom worktops; Schott from Germany demonstrated their specialty glass solutions, SICAM, representing the Italian-based Expo shared insights about international accessories and components influencing kitchen and furniture production globally, and 10 Ukrainian furnishings and furniture brands from Lviv, including Garant, Pikart lights, Furniture Park, WoodLuck, Aria, ReStyle, Zavadski, Viyar, Aluminum Decor System, and Empire of Marble showed their unique and accessibility priced product portfolios.

The International Pavilions—Three KBIS sanctioned International Pavilion spaces brought country-themed manufacturers together in the North and South Halls. The UK Pavilion, produced in partnership with the British Bathroom Manufacturers Association (BMA), featured the theme “A Tradition of Innovation” showcasing five UK brands. In their third year of exhibiting at KBIS, the German Pavilion, created in cooperation with the German Association of the German Furniture Industry (VDM) and the Association of Modern Kitchen (AMK), celebrated the theme “Made in Germany” showing 15 German manufacturers. The Brazil Pavilion was a conceptual space produced in collaboration with Centrorochas, the Brazilian Association of Natural Stone Exporters. Themed “It’s Natural,” the pavilion explored the concept of “wellness and wellbeing” through nature, with over 20 quarries represented from all over Brazil.

Visit https://kb.nkba.org/globalconnect/blog for more information about this initiative.

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