CES Asia unites with Alibaba to showcase tech breakthroughs
Consumer Technology Association (CTA), owner and producer of the International Consumer Electronics Show (International CES) will work with Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba to hold the second CES Asia in Shanghai next month, CTA announced on Tuesday.
This year's event will be held May 11-13 in Shanghai. The inaugural Asian version of the US-based CES was held last May at the Shanghai New International Expo Center.
This year's event will be double the scale of last year's, Shapiro said.
"Spanning up to 40,000 gross square meters (20,000 net square meters) of exhibit space, CES Asia 2016 will feature more than 300 exhibiting companies highlighting breakthrough technologies across 15 product categories -- from 3D printing and smart home technology to robotics, wearables, vehicle technology and more," CTA officials said in a press release.
"Three focuses for the event are the Internet of Things, connectivity and innovation," Shapiro said. "For the first time, a special area that focuses on startups, the same as the 'Eureka Park' that was shown in the Las Vegas International CES, will be built in the venue ... more than 20 French startups will also set up booths in the area."
There will be a separate demonstration area for drones.
Automobile companies will showcase the latest tech in the industry, such as self-driving cars. Shapiro noted the distinct difference between auto shows versus CES.
"CES is more focused on the future technology and the eco-systems that behind the cars while auto shows are about what products that consumers can purchase today," he said.
Participating automobile companies will include BMW, Maserati, Volvo and General Motors, said John Kelley, senior director of International Programs and show director of CES Asia.
Yin Jing, president of Tmall 3C & Home Appliance Business Unit of Alibaba Group, said that the CES Asia 2016 triggers the start of collaboration between Alibaba and CTA, and the two sides will extend further cooperations at the International CES 2017 held in Las Vegas.
"The active buyers on Alibaba's e-commerce platforms have surpassed 400 million, which is higher than the entire population of the US," Yin said.
According Alibaba Group research, one quarter of active buyers, who have been born since 1980, are the firm's in-depth consumers, and have contributed 80 percent of the turnover of the platforms.
"The key buyers are keen on purchasing high quality products that are not limited to domestic goods, and they are shopping globally through Alibaba's platforms," Yin added. "3C and home appliance products are the pioneers for feeding the demand of the emerging buyers."
Yin said that CES is recognized at the world's incubator of the latest technology breakthroughs in the consumer technology sector. Thanks to Alibaba's existing marketing resources and user base, he is determined to help more foreign technology brands expand to Chinese markets.
"Consumer technology industry professionals from China and across Asia, including 5,022 senior level executives and 7,987 representatives from buying organizations, will see the power of CES Asia that fosters innovation and serves as the place for brands to position themselves to new and existing audiences," CTA said in a written statement.
"In a time of rapid change of innovation, a technology show is very important to gather everyone in the industry, including the press, investors, buyers and others to talk about the trends and technologies to see where they should going and inspire new ideas," Shapiro said.
According to Shapiro, one of the biggest changes in business he's seen in the past few years is the increase in companies developing partnerships. Some of the largest companies in the world are interested in partnering with smaller ones or investing in startups. More partnerships are developing as technology shifts across different industries and the trade show presents a location for these companies to meet each other, he said.