DETROIT – Nalpac hosted its first-ever open house this week; welcoming 34 vendors and more than 100 buying entities for three days of product exhibitions, networking and bonding over nightly activities throughout Detroit’s historic Greektown district.
Glenn LeBoeuf, Nalpac vice president of operations, said he was appreciative of the event’s vendors – several of which enlisted as sponsors of various components of the event. Among the sponsors were Pipedream Products, CalExotics, Doc Johnson, Nasstoys, System Jo and SI Novelties, among others.
System Jo sponsored night one’s Meet & Greet, which introduced attendees to local cuisine while enjoying Motown classics. The second night Nalpac treated attendees to a south of the border experience with a Mexican Night sponsored by Nasstoys complete with mariachis and a margarita bar.
"Nalpac is so appreciative of the vendors whose generous support allowed us to hold our first Open House,” LeBoeuf told XBIZ. “Their enthusiastic participation not only made this event possible, but also added to the energy and camaraderie everyone felt. We are very grateful to our vendor-partners for helping make this event so successful."
On the final night of Nalpac’s open house, attendees had an opportunity to enjoy a sightseeing yacht tour on the Detroit River. The event offered a bar sponsored by CalExotics, with souvenir photos sponsored by SI Novelties.
During the day, Nalpac’s Open House featured vendors situated throughout the Atheneum Suite Hotel’s expansive ballroom with buyers going from station to station checking out their latest releases and writing sales orders.
"The vendors told us they appreciated the opportunity to go in-depth with customers in such a flexible format,” LeBoeuf said. “Their staffs arrived fully prepared to discuss the finer details of their companies' products, and were ready with definitive answers to customers' questions."
Pipedream Products catered to visitors of its bustling booth with two reps on hand – Cheryl Flangel and Colleen Godin.
“It’s been a big success for us, we’ve been busy non-stop,” Godin said. “Nalpac has been invaluable in helping Pipedream stay on top. We thank them for putting together a great event.”
Monday featured a special appearance by Coco, who posed for photos and signed autographs while promoting her Cocolicious collection, manufactured by CalExotics. The brand’s sister company, Jopen also was in attendance with brand manager Robin Stewart connecting with Nalpac’s diverse customer base that included a buyer from Singapore.
“It was exciting to be here,” Stewart said. “I got to meet new retailers and expand our reach with the Jopen brand. We made a lot sales and met many retailers.”
Electric Lingerie’s Zachary Goode told XBIZ is was a no-brainer to attend Nalpac’s Open House.
“I’m honored to be here and support Nalpac any way I can,” he said. “As a valued distributor of Electric’s, I’m grateful for their continued support for our product lines.”
Sliquid’s Michelle Marcus showcased the brand’s range of lubricants and bodycare products for men and women while disseminating facts about their health benefits.
“The Splash and Smooth line of feminine products are pH-balanced,” Marcus said. “This is especially important for women that take baths – stagnant water contributes to yeast infections, even among young girls. I give this product to all my friends that have daughters.”
Carlos Becker of Kheper Games exhibited the brand’s latest novelty items and games. “I hope to share with Nalpac’s customers the importance of carrying games,” he said. “People use games therapeutically or to solve problems with intimacy. They’re great for exploration.”
Carrashield’s Jeff Hawkins exhibited a new retail display for the Divine 9 brand of lube.
“This is the type of event I like to attend because of the customer interaction,” Hawkins said. “I get the opportunity to talk to the retailer and educate them on the benefits of Divine 9.”
SI Novelties’ Steven Schwartz said the company gave attendees a firsthand introduction t three new lines that are carried by Nalpac.
“Customers are seeing our full line up close and personal,” Schwartz said. “We had a lot of traffic at our booth; and I’m more than happy to be here getting excellent feedback from customers.”
Thomas Rafferty, Nalpac sales manager, is credited with organizing Nalpac’s Open House.
"It is extremely gratifying to see so many of our customers at the Open House, learning about the products and interacting with each other,” he told XBIZ. “Retailers have many demands on their time and resources. We know that it isn't easy to fit another event into their busy schedules. So hearing from so many that they found the Open House valuable to their businesses is just what we had hoped.
"The smaller scale of an Open House allowed customers the time and space to learn important details about vendors' products, and to exchange ideas with suppliers and fellow retailers in a comfortable setting. And everyone appreciated the high level of attention they received from the Nalpac staff."
Ralph Caplan, Nalpac Owner/President, told XBIZ, "I want to thank everyone involved for making Nalpac's first Open House such a hit. Our staff worked very hard to ensure that we did everything possible to exceed expectations. Our vendors supported this event fully and for that we are eternally grateful. And our customers made it all worthwhile with their passion for this business. Nalpac is proud to be a member of such a great industry.
"Holding Nalpac's first Open House at Detroit's Atheneum Suite Hotel was a great choice for everyone. Our guests told us they rarely have felt so comfortable. The ballroom was especially inspiring. Natural light poured in through huge windows, helping the products look their best and brightening everyone's mood. We were alsoimpressed with the exemplary service provided by the Atheneum's staff, which we believe mirrors Nalpac's commitment to its customers."