US buyer Jennifer Kattalia is flying over to check out UK’s card publishing talent
The international reach of PG Live has grown over its 15-year history with Barnes & Noble and Paper Source card buyer Jennifer Kattalia jetting over from the US for the first time to check out the specialist greeting card show.
And Jennifer, who is the greeting card, stationery and paper buyer for B&N’s 618 stores plus the 120 Paper Source stores, will be joining hundreds of retailers at the show next Tuesday and Wednesday, 6-7 June, at London’s Business Design Centre.
Jennifer will be in good company in the aisles and on the stands with the registration roster reading like a who’s who of greeting card retailers.
Among the many buyers already signed up are plenty of indies alongside well-known names including Oliver Bonas, Tesco, WHSmith, Card Factory, Scribbler, John Lewis, Cardzone, Fortnum & Mason, Postmark, Moonpig, Asda, House of Cards, Fenwick, Notcutts, Cards Galore, Thortful, Blue Diamond, National Trust, RHS, Liberty, National Trust, Dobbies, TJ Maxx, Waitrose, Between The Lines, Temptations, Waitrose, Morrisons, Waterstones, Longacres, Barkers, Ocado, Henry & Co, Funky Pigeon and Utility.
Here PG Buzz lets Jennifer spill the beans on all things greetings-related at Barnes & Noble and Paper Source, which are both owned by Elliott Investment Management, which also has a majority stake in Waterstones:
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself…how long have you been with B&N/Paper Source and buying greeting cards?
“I have been at the Paper Source for four years this summer, time flies! And now I can officially say I have been with Barnes & Noble for one year. I’ve been buying greeting cards since I started at the company, but I have been a lover of the card world even before then. I’ve always been a paper enthusiast to the extent of being considered a paper nerd, but that makes the job all the more fun!”
What made you decide to come to PG Live?
“Honestly, the talent and opportunity to learn. The greeting card industry in the UK is a lot different than in the States from a customer behaviour point of view, as well as the overall aesthetic. In some ways, it’s a bigger industry than in the States. So, for me, the draw to PG Live is to see first-hand the talent driving this lucrative industry and the overall approach to making card shopping destinations. Which is helpful for Paper Source and Barnes & Noble’s future since we have the opportunity to lay our own path in the greeting card world and develop our influences as a card destination. I’m excited for PG Live to expose us to the talent resources out there to make it happen.”
What are your hopes and dreams for your visit?
“Simple, my biggest hope is that I walk away having made so many great connections and a long list of new vendors to add to our Card Shop! One of the specialties of our Card Shop has been our creator community. We work with such a large range of vendors from small independent makers to larger publishers and, with that, have conceived an eclectic card wall. You can find all kinds of different expressions in voices, styles, and formats, and there is no limit to the creativity that we can work with and support, so I’m looking forward to seeing all that PG Live will expose me too!”
How would you describe the greeting card selections in both store groups?
“Eclectic and whimsical.”
Any plans to change direction of your greeting card display?
“Not specifically. At the moment, we’re looking to continue to have a card wall full of surprise and delight moments.”