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By The Skanner News
Published: 10 December 2008

From Jan. 10 – 13, the Oregon Convention Center is the country's independent retail capital as nearly 300 exhibitors and thousands of buyers elect to be at the Portland Gift & Accessories Show (www.portlandgift.com).
As the first industry showcase of the year, the Portland Show has come to be a must-attend expo for trend spotting and access to many exhibitors unique to this most-important entry point for the Great Northwest market.
The educational seminars presented by industry experts include "Retail is Change" by Lynn Switanowski-Barrett; "Going Green Gradually" and "Building Employee Loyalty and Satisfaction" by Linda Cahan; and "Image Based Merchandising" and "The Details of Retail" offered by Pam Pesetti.
And – naturally – it wouldn't be the Portland Gift & Accessories Show without the year's most eagerly-anticipated party at the American Cowgirls Bar & Grill across the street from the Convention Center.
"The Portland Gift & Accessories Show is the definitive boutique buying experience for the independent retailer," says Portland Show Manager Jenay Root. "When you're in Portland you think of merchandise which is artisan-based, eco-friendly and sustainably manufactured. That's why this year's theme is 'Naturally Portland.' What you'll find here is all naturally unique, naturally inspired and naturally one-of-a-kind."
As is always the case, this year's Portland Gift & Accessories Show will feature many emerging manufacturers and artisans unique to the venue.
The six distinctive product divisions are Artisans Avenue, Fashion Accessories, FoodFocus, Gift & Collectibles, Jewelry Vault, Cash & Carry and The Vintage Collection.
"The Portland Gift & Accessories Show is the nation's most affordable, easy to shop market but one still large enough to meet everyone's buying needs," stated Root.
Exhibitors seeking information should contact show manager Jenay Root at 213-430-2311 or [email protected].
Attendee information may be obtained by contacting GLM Customer Relations at 800-272-SHOW (7469) or 603-665-7524.
Visit www.portlandgift.com for more detailed information about the show.

Schedule of Seminars and Events

Saturday, Jan. 10
1 — 2:15 p.m.
"Retail is Change"
Presenter: Lynn Switanowski-Barrett, founder, Speaker Creative Business Consulting Group
Consumers are changing, economics are changing, and the products and suppliers we use in our retail stores are continually changing. The best retailers understand that change is a part of retail life and they plan in advance to meet these changes and end up thriving because of it. This seminar will focus on helping retailers adjust, adapt and apply tactics that will make their businesses more profitable for a long time to come.

Sunday, Jan. 11
12 — 1:15 p.m.
"Going Green Gradually"
Presenter: Linda Cahan, visual expert
Not only is going green environmentally important, customers appreciate it as well. For retailers, going green is more than selling more environmentally friendly products, it also relates to lighting, paint, fixtures, bags, displays and signage. When a customer shops at a "green" store they feel they are doing their part in helping the environment. This seminar will provide practical and affordable ideas on how to gradually "green" a store and how to let customers in on the process.

3 — 4:15 p.m.
"Building Employee Loyalty and Satisfaction"
Presenter: Linda Cahan
The environmental conditions in a retail store directly affect employee attitudes. When employees feel fulfilled and appreciated in their work, in-store and Internet sales can increase significantly. Employee retention is directly linked to the atmosphere within the store. This seminar will focus on how to create and maintain employee loyalty and satisfaction affordably and creatively.

12 — 1:15 p.m.
"Image Based Merchandising"
Presenter: Pam Pesetti, speaker and consultant
A retailer's image is strengthened or depleted through merchandising. In this seminar, Pam will demonstrate how to effectively promote a store's image through merchandising to increase profits.

Monday, Jan. 12
3 — 4:15 p.m.
"The Details of Retail"
Presenter: Pam Pesetti
The difference is in the details. They are what differentiate a retailer from its competitors and the big box retailer across town. A crooked label on a gift bag, or an employee wearing a worn t-shirt adds up to image. In this seminar, Pam will guide participants through five main areas of a store where little details can make a big impact.

6:30 — 8:30 p.m.
"Exhibitor and Buyer Reception"
The Portland Gift & Accessories Show would not be the same without this fun,
free event that's all about networking, unwinding after a busy show day and enjoying the complimentary buffet and music. And of course the evening would not be complete without a little karaoke. This event will be held at the American Cowgirls Bar & Grill, just across the street from the Convention Center.

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