THE Philippine export and tourism industries can benefit from an “overseas marketing tool” in the form of “Fiesta In America”—known to thousands of Filipino-Americans as the
biggest indoor consumer expo of its kind at US East Coast.
This was the positive statement of Arlen Manansala, Fiesta In America’s vice president for Marketing and Communications, when she visited home in February.
New York-based Manansala was in the Philippines on a mission to promote the two-day Fiesta in America slated on August 13 and 14 at the Meadowlands Expo Center in New Jersey. It will be the expo’s 18th edition.
According to her, the unique expo can serve as an effective sales, branding and awareness vehicle for small and medium-sized manufacturers of export products; cater to real estate companies wishing to position the Philippines as the ideal investment and retirement haven. It can also be beneficial for operators of hotels, casinos, and resorts, as well as travel professionals and government agencies involved in trade and tourism market development.
“Demographics speak volumes about the economic power of Filipinos in New York and New Jersey that can fuel the influx of artisanal goods to the affluent northeast market and, conversely, drive the flow of Fil-Am as well as multicultural tourists into the Philippines,” Manansala emphasized at one of her presentations held at Anabel’s in Quezon City.
Based on data supplied by Fiesta In America’s New York City main office, visitors to the annual expo average anywhere from 10,000 to 14,000 over its two-day run in the summer. Over 200,000 individuals have been to the event since its inception in 1998 as the Philippine Trade and Cultural Show.
Fiesta In America’s marquee offering is a Trade and Travel Pavilion that occupies nearly 70 percent of the MEC. It can accommodate more than 150 piped and draped exhibitor booths. A large native Food Court, four 50-seat seminar rooms, a 20,000-copy magazine (Fiesta Talks), and two nights of live musical concerts starring performers from The Filipino Channel round-up the expo’s direct-marketing and sales-activating features for businesses.
For his part, New York Consul General Ambassador Mario de Leon, Jr. noted that Filipino exporters “deserve every opportunity to expand their North American market reach beyond traditional outlets such as California and other west coast states.”
The Consulate General at the Philippine Center on New York City’s Fifth Avenue, which also houses the offices of the Philippine trade and tourism attaches, has had a long history of backing private-public initiatives that support the Filipino American community, including Fiesta In America.