Furniture makers, contractors, designers converge in Tubod

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By Ehda M. Dagooc/JOB (The Freeman) | Updated April 4, 2013 – 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines – Furniture makers in Cebu have joined hands with contractors and designers in holding the first ever furniture exhibition dubbed “Tubod” with a common goal of capturing the estimated $647 million demand for furniture and furnishings in the domestic trade.

Over 40 furniture makers, most of whom are exporters, will be showcasing their products through its newest marketing platform specifically created for the domestic furniture and furnishings market.

Led by the Cebu Furniture Industries Foundation Inc. (CFIF), “Tubod” will be held in conjunction with the Visayas PhilConstruct Show slated on June 6-8, 2013 at the Cebu City Waterfront Hotel and Casino.

In a press conference, CFIF chairperson for market development Christina Maria Gaston said that with the help of the PhilConstruct, designers, and the Philippines Constructors Association (PCA), furniture manufacturers will be able to connect properly with the local market, while the global trade is still struggling.

Gaston said “Tubod” (which means “Source”) shall be the source and the wellspring of the flow of ideas, talents and resources between and among designers, contractors, manufacturers and other players of the interior design and construction industry with furniture and furnishing manufacturing industry in Cebu.

“This show would be the first and only furniture trade for trade specifically designed for the domestic market. Dubbed as a ‘show within a show’, Tubod is seen to tap into in the vast potential of the domestic furniture and furnishings market, valued at US$647 million,” said Gaston.

Backed by a combined 400 years of manufacturing and exporting experience, the participating furniture and furnishings manufacturers will open doors, most of them for the first time, to serving the needs of the domestic market trade.

“Tubod will be the venue where designers and builders converge to source export quality furniture, furnishings, and other fit-out products for the domestic market,” she said.

PCA executive director Lito Madrasto urged furniture makers not to look too far in terms of sustaining their business, while the global financial crunch has affected the industry badly, saying “we are the export market.”

Madrasto said other countries specifically, China, Thailand, Malaysia are taking advantage of the Philippines’ construction boom by supplying furniture and furnishing needs here, leaving the local furniture makers wasting the opportunity.

“The market (now) is Asia. Forget the other side of the world. We are eaten by our competitors,” Madrasto told furniture makers.  — (FREEMAN)

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