GuyEpo 2006 was yet another missed opportunity for local businesses to effectively widen their market base.
Entrepreneurs from across the length and breath of this land choked into the olden structures at Exhibition Site Sophia under sweltering heat to promote their businesses, many of them still managed a smile from behind harden faces of disappointments.
Guyana’s epitome of a large fair trade and exposition was nothing but a large fair and dance attracting several entertainment starved youths.
Organisors promised that the event would not been used as an entertainment attraction, even though better sense prevailed since persisting along with the non-entertainment tune would have certainly set GuyExpo on the wrong chord.
The largest crowd was experienced on Sunday, jamming the walkways and the tarmac but few ever ventured to look around at the booths, judging from the instantly recognisable ease at which those who remembered it was a trade fair were able to enjoy the booths.
Overwhelmed by the large crowds on Sunday the organisors tried desperately to sustain their high level of preparedness and security, but like the Berlin wall, systems collapsed.
At the ticket booths, patrons became uneasy; at the gates, thugs, chic-chic board operators, firearm holders-some members of our team included, slipped (strolled) by easily without a whisper from security officials for a check.
NO Checks!!! No patting-down of the women by male security personnel (As was done last year), even metal detectors failed on that particular night. All of this under the watchful eye of ICC/CWC officials, since GuyExpo was used as one of two venues to test Guyana’s security plan for CWC 2007.
Monday evening presented a similar situation in relation to security, but this time more patrons ensured they visited the booths.
Without having to wait for an official assessment, we could safely pronounce that security was a partial failure. Partial because the almighty allowed for a rather incident free exposition
Without having to wait six months for the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce to provide an assessment, we could safely say that GT&T and its cellular phone vendors rang out as the company with the best marketing initiative.
Those trade-in offers were magnet to patrons. Other companies such as Courts Guyana Inc. also did well to attract interest and create excitement at GuyExpo. In General companies that gave away prizes managed good support from visitors.
Overall GuyExpo was a big sham
The worst booth has definitely SAFECO Group of Companies, the parent company of Guyflag.