New vendors drive CDF B2B Connection

By Sarah Robinson/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – Kim Caron from the Caron Gallery in Tupelo is passionate about art.
“I want art to be available to everyone,” she said.
Caron was one of almost 80 vendors Tuesday at the seventh annual Business to Business Connection hosted by the Community Development Foundation in Tupelo and one of 30 new participants in the event this year.
The purpose of the event is to provide a marketplace for businesses who provide services to other businesses.
Caron attended as a spectator last year but decided to set up as a vendor this year.
“Businesses have lobbies and offices want a good, welcoming atmosphere for customers and employees,” she said.
So, she decided to set up as a vendor.
With works ranging in price from $40 to $4,000, Caron believes she has something for everyone and wanted to spread that message at the event.
Karen Geddie, vice president of the chamber of commerce at the CDF, said Caron was one of many new vendors at the 2013 event and the first art gallery to attend as a vendor.
Geddie said the largest area of growth was among vendors who are new to the Tupelo area.
According to Geddie, this group of vendors was more diverse than in the past. The CDF, she said, was enthusiastic about the variety of industries they saw and hope for continued diversification.
MyOfficeProducts in Tupelo was not a newcomer, but it did return to the event for the first time in four years.
Markel Whittington, sales manager with MyOfficeProducts, said that despite the financial and time commitments required to participate, exposure received at the event is good for business.
“You can either hope the economy gets better or go out and make your own economy,” he said.
The Business to Business Connection concluded Tuesday evening with the Taste of Tupelo, which featured more than 20 area restaurants.
sarah.robinson@journalinc.com