VERONA, ITALY– The first stage of the new promotion initiative launched by Veronafiere-Marmomacc - "We Speak Stone" – closed last Tuesday in New York, NY. The event was attended by 10 of the most important companies in the Veronese stone district (Antolini, Bauce Bruno, Cereser Marmi, Formigari, Girasole Pietre Naturali, Montegrappa, La Ponte Marmi M&G, Marmi Scala, Domos and Testi Group). This was the debut for a broader project that will see the organization of other international stages accompanying companies to consolidated and emerging markets in the natural stone field.

The two-day event in New York, NY, included many meetings with some of the world's most renowned architects, such as Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (KPF) and VOA Architecture Associates, visits to the showrooms of distributors including Artistic Tile, Walker Zanger and Stone Source, as well as b2b meetings.

Marmomacc has for many years been recognized as an education provider by AIA, the American Association of Architects, and in New York also proposed educational seminars in collaboration with Stone Trends International and Mapei U.S. Corp.

"The U.S. is a market we have followed up with great attention for many years, precisely to ensure more business and development opportunities for our companies in a vital geo-economic area for Italian marble-stone and technologies," said Giovanni Mantovani, CEO & director general of Veronafiere. "This initiative in New York is part of Marmomacc's new strategy on international markets that seeks to promote dialogue between companies and key players in the sector, be they architects and designers, or buyers and distributors of products and technologies. This matching and reporting task is backed up by a new app that leverages Marmomacc's web platform to maintain and develop business and contacts."

While the natural stone-technology industry continues to rank among sectors of excellence in Italian manufacturing thanks to an overall value of exports coming to 3.2 billion euros in 2015, the U.S. is once again among the most receptive markets precisely for producting such high added value items as finished and semi-finished stone products and related technologies. The first posted an increase in exports to the U.S. of 24.7% (worth 458 million euros) out of an overall total for Italy in the segment of 1.6 billion euros; the second came to nearly 142 million euros out of a total of 1.2 billion in 2015.

The relationship with the U.S. is very well established-- during the last edition of Marmomacc in 2015, professional "Stars and Stripes" attendance improved by 23.7% (1,700 operators vs. 1,374 in 2014 and 1,075 in 2013).

The 51st edition of Marmomacc is scheduled in Verona, Italy, on September 28 to October 1, 2016.