Value-chain thinking begins with planning how to change a business’s competitive advantage through the efficient and effective usage of scarce resources. By collaborating with supply-chain partners to minimize waste and increase the level of innovation, new products and services can be developed while improving business processes.
In the MICE industry, where value-chains rather than individual firms are the primary competitors, three primary concepts underlie value-chain thinking – consumer value, supply-chain relationships and information flow.
For a company that retains 70 percent of its tradeshow clients, Kingsmen enhances consumer value by providing value-added services and/or reducing cost. The organization reduces cost for its clients by proposing simplifications in design or alternative materials without significant compromises to the end product.
When exhibiting in Asia, many companies opt to build and burn due to limited and expensive storage space as well as their preference for fresh designs each year. Furthermore, in the absence of proper climate-controlled storage, many exhibition components tend to deteriorate in a humid environment. By providing effective storage and maintenance of reusable exhibition components, Kingsmen trims waste and extends the client’s investment. In addition, clients are updated on the reusable components available in storage so that designers are able to incorporate such components into new designs from the pre-planning stage.
Practicing value-chain thinking is also beneficial in transforming the relationship between businesses and their stakeholders into integral, win-win situations. This occurs by incentivizing suppliers to share innovation through the cultivation of long-term trust-based relationships in which each industry player welcomes the sharing of innovation and benefits collectively from it.
David Tay, executive director, Kingsmen Ooh-Media, shared that, “forming integral relationships with our partners require an understanding of their unique skill sets and the ability to string together the most valuable combination of our partners’ core competencies to provide our clients with turnkey solutions.”
These include online and off-line solutions to drive traffic to exhibitions and events through lead generation and data collection. By running surveys with the end consumer before and after each marketing initiative, information flow is enhanced. This ultimately helps clients better engage their key target audiences.
Collaborations between leading companies have grown to include the sharing of innovation for the MICE industry by inviting valued partners and suppliers to conduct information-sharing sessions. Such sessions boost the sharing of knowledge about products that have been tried and tested, creating a better understanding of materials and resources. This enables each company to work with their suppliers to develop more cost-efficient and green solutions for clients. Fostering collaborative partnerships among exhibition builders, suppliers, venue owners and organizers also involve sharing feedback, suggestions for improvement and alternatives.
“Over the years, Kingsmen and Reed have supported each other through different tradeshows, and as partners we are always working towards growing and complementing each other’s business,” explained Rita Magnus, senior manager of operations and conference, Reed Exhibitions Singapore.
James Boey, director of projects management, Singex Exhibitions Pte Ltd., added, “Kingsmen has supported Singex in numerous trade events across different industries…. Beyond providing a single product, Kingsmen was able to leverage on its supply-chain network to make sustainable recommendations and take innovative approaches in its delivery.”
Information flow is also a key aspect of quality service. For instance, local ground knowledge in areas, such as legal, customs and tax matters, are extremely valuable to exhibitors and event organizers from abroad. Having local offices across the region and maintaining long standing relationships with foreign partners and associates enables Kingsmen to lend its expertise in these fields as well as offer after-sales service.
At the crux of value-chain thinking, information flow plays a pivotal role in enhancing consumer value and supply-chain relationships. By working in a more collaborative environment across the total value-chain, businesses can build an information platform that would fuel further supply-chain solutions, such as demand-driven ordering and joint promotional planning. These improvements to business processes give companies an advantage in meeting the dynamic MICE industry’s rising standards and ultimately satisfying consumers’ needs.
The contributor is the Sales & Marketing Director of Kingsmen Exhibits Pte Ltd, a leading communication design & production group in Asia Pacific & the Middle East.