Planning on visiting the show for the first time and don't want to look like a johnny-come-lately? Brush up on your knowledge here...

Taipei Cycle Show: Ten things you didn’t know

1. Unfailing demand for the show has seen it smash records faster than a particularly angry DJ. Last year the show expanded on the 2011 exhibition by around 230 booths (to 3,284) and the exhibition halls of Nangang had to be opened up to meet the increasing demand for space, with over 100 exhibitors on the waiting list.

2. Last year’s show (and 2009’s) was opened by keen cyclist and Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou. In 2012, Giant founder King Liu cleverly encouraged the President to sign a Giant Bike while the papparazi was there (including BikeBiz’s own Carlton Reid) securing maximum media exposure. David Cameron signing a Brompton or Pashley at Cycle Show 2013? You heard it here first.

3. A handy travelling tip is that you can be fined for eating or drinking on Taipei’s metro system, so if you’re travelling to the show via the convenient metro – it now directly connects Nangang Hall with TWTC Hall 1 near Taipei City Hall – leave the snacks in your hotel room. If you can’t avoid scoffing, we hear the Taipei shuttle bus is more lax in its eating etiquette.

4. Arriving empty handed at your business meeting at Taipei Cycle Show may be as much a faux pas as forgetting a Valentine’s gift for your loved one. According to Taipei Cycle organisers, Asians love gifts from afar that bind the ties. Then again, who doesn’t?

5. For a few testing weeks in spring 2011, Canadian MTB brand Race Face went into receivership before, happily, it was reopened for business, helmed by former VP of sales Chris Tutton. The uncertain period before the good news coincided with a (non) appearance at Taipei Cycle 2011. The Race Face booth was made up, with chairs installed, but no products or staff were there – understandably – after being told they’d no longer be required after the firm went into receivership days before. At least there was a happy ending.

6. While dwarfed by the likes of Eurobike and obviously much further away, the show still manages to lure visitors from an incredibly varied 36 countries, with around 300 attendees from the UK. In fact half of the international visitors come from Asian countries, the other half from the US and Europe.

7. What connects Brompton, Velocite, Tern and SKS? They were among the first-ever winners of the Taipei Cycle D&I Awards, debuting last year in partnership with the internationally famed iF International Forum Design. Other winners from that inaugural edition included Jet Black, Merida, Birzman, SRAM and Giant.

8. Who is the biggest exhibitor at Taipei Cycle? Giant? Merida? Nope – the answer is closer to home in the European shape of COLIPED. The Association has exhibited at Taipei for 21 years and for the second year in a row it will be hosting 34 European exhibitors, occupying 93 booths (837 m2) in 2013, including the likes of 4ZA, Schwalbe, Limar, Lake, Santini and the UK’s own Weldtite. There are seven newcomers to the booth this year.

9. Taiwan’s bike lanes are now being touted as amongst the best in the world, with literally thousands of kilometres of paths – not bad for a country better known for producing bikes than for locals riding them. The ‘Bicycle Kingdom’ has seen new protected bike paths installed due not least to bicycle advocacy efforts from local companies like Giant and Merida. So while in Taipei why not cement a deal or two on a ride with your new business partners?

10. More to your business than bikes? Taipei Cycle Show is connected to three shows which run alongside it and may be of interest. Tickets afford you access to all four shows, so you can also dip into SPOMODE, TaiSPO and DiWas, should you wish to (and 1,100 buyers from Taipei Cycle did last year).

If you’ve got any more tips or titbits of Taipei Cycle Show knowledge you want to pass on, head to the comments section below.

WHAT: Taipei Cycle Show
WHEN: Wednesday March 20th to 23rd
WHERE: TWTC Nangang Exhibition Hall, Taipei, Taiwan
ORGANISER: TAITRA – the Taiwan External Trade Development Council

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