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Retailers association organizes first trade show

August 2009
Retailers association organizes first trade show

Georgia Retailers Association organized a successful trade show on June 28 at Gwinnett Civic Center in Duluth.

At 11 a.m. Sanah Sayani greeted everyone and congratulated GRA President Shaukat Sunny Sayani, Vice-President Monty Hudda and other officers and directors, who lined up, flanked by the U.S. flag, and proceeded to cut the tape and declare the show open.

The trade show, which featured more than 95 booths of vendors offering a broad range of products and services, had a festive atmosphere. Visitors were entertained with music and songs as they visited the booths. Exhibitors enticed them with free samples of products they showcased and made special offers to potential customers. The show gave vendors and buyers a face-to-face opportunity to do business.

“The show affords an opportunity of meeting directly with vendors, manufacturers, distributors, gasoline jobbers and many other service providers and saving thousands of dollars by negotiating deals for the entire year,” said Hudda, a longtime Atlanta resident who has been running a wholesale business for 15 years.

The participants were entered in raffle drawings and every thirty minutes Sanah announced the lucky winners of various items sponsored by the vendors. In addition to raffle winnings, visitors went home with bags full of candies, chips, beverages, trial software packages and many other freebies offered by the exhibitors.

“There is a family atmosphere here,” said attorney Ron Thompson, who is actively volunteering with Habitat for Humanity and Big Brother, Big Sister humanitarian projects. “Everyone knows everybody. Everyone is very supportive. The array of things you see here is astounding ... I think all this makes GRA a unique organization.”

Jane Newton of Cline Associates sold coolers, stackers, candy and assorted items at her booth. “It is a wonderful show with a strong attendance,” she said. “I am very glad to be part of this association. Everyone is very friendly.”

During the show, GRA announced its contribution of $25,000 to AKF Partnership Walk to help eradicate poverty in the developing world. GRA directors believe that they have succeeded in their businesses through community support and it’s now their duty to help others.

GRA received numerous compliments on the show. Vendors commented that it was well-organized, well-marketed and they were extremely happy to be able to meet retailers face to face.

“I take this opportunity to thank the media -- Khabar, Atlantadunia, India Tribune and NRIPULSE -- for helping us with publicity,” Hudda said. “I feel very optimistic for this and future shows.”

At present GRA has more than 1,500 members. Its mission is to help members buy products and services at discounted prices through bulk buying and associated contracts. For more information, go to www.GeorgiaRetailersAssociation.com

-- Mahadev Desai

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