â€œMarbleâ€ was first held in 1995 as Turkey's international stone fair, with 47 exhibitors in an area of approximately 28,000 square feet. Today, the show has expanded to encompass almost 360,000 square feet of exhibition space. The event was registered by one of the world's leading trade fair authority, UFI - The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, in 1998, and was the first UFI-approved specialized trade fair in Turkey, reported organizer Izfas Izmir Fair.
This year's exhibition showed a 52% increase in the number of attendees compared to the last year, exceeding expectations, according to Dogan Isleyen, general manager of Izfas Izmir Fair. â€œWe have two aims,â€ he said. â€œOur first aim is to build a new exhibition center to fulfill the rapidly increasing demand of new exhibitors, and to provide a comfortable opportunity for our professional visitors. Our second aim is to increase Marble's success and make it the premier [show] in the world.â€
Those attending Marble 2005 hailed from countries around the world, including Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iran, Iraq, India, Indonesia, Republic of Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mexico, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Republic of San Marino, Romania, Russian Federation, S. Vicente, Saudia Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Syria, Switzerland, South Africa, South Cyprus, South Korea, Taiwan, The Netherlands, Tunus, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, the U.S., the United Kingdom and Venezuela.
The next edition of Marble is scheduled for March 29 to April 1, 2006 in Izmir, Turkey.