Simplifying Complexity – we built an an App for Canton Fair visitors.

The Canton Fair is held every Spring and Autumn in Guangzhou China, and is the worlds largest trade fair by far.

How Large?

  • 1,185,000 square metres – over a square kilometre of exhibition space
  • 3 phases, each 5 days, and each phase using all of that massive space.
  • Over 60,000 standard stands presented
  • 213 trading countries participating

Cantion Fair Large

It goes without saying then that no 1-person could ever visit every booth – it’s quite impossible.  Instead visitors have to carefully select what they want to see, and possible more importantly, what not to see.

But even then, even after a buyer has carefully selected just a few product niches, there are just so many competitors and product choices – indeed it can be quite overwhelming.

On our first trip we dutifully carried a notebook for notes, a mobile phone for pictures, and a backpacks for brochures and business cards.  What followed was days of relentless walking through the exhibition halls to visit vendors stocking potential products to suit our preferred niche markets.  At the end of it all, we had many 100’s of photos, 100’s of business cards, and stacks of notes. Consolidating all of that information into a useful format for later follow up was nothing short of a nightmare.

So, based on our experience, and the experience of others like us, we decided to build Canton Fair Buddy.

Now buyers can easily gather and store critical information, notes and pictures in one handy place – for easy access and follow up after the fair.  They can prioritise their most preferred by liking those files, and they can lock-protect critical items from accidental editing & deletion.

Finally  – a more rewarding Canton Fair experience with much less frustrations afterwards.

Canton Tower

Canton Fair Buddy

Available Free on App Store
App Store

Your app idea is not a goldmine, it’s a signature restaurant dish.

Your app idea is not a goldmine, it’s a signature restaurant dish.

blur, breakfast, chef

Many people dream up wonderful new app ideas, and sit on those ideas waiting for the ideal opportunity to “make it happen”.  They think of their wonderful idea as if it were a gold mine, with potential wealth just sitting there – ready to be dug up … if only they had the time (and money) to allow them to start digging.

This perspective often leads to huge disappointment. These dreamers wake up one day only to find out that someone has now created “their” app, used “their” idea, and then it’s all too late.

So, forget gold mine thinking. Getting started is not nearly as expensive as digging up a mine, and if you don’t start – you’re sure to miss out.

Rather –think of your app idea as a new signature restaurant dish. There are hundreds of thousands of willing customers always eager to sample new dishes – but you need to move fast.

… think of your app idea as a new signature restaurant dish …

First you turn your dish ideas into a recipe, and get some insights from a professional chef.  Together you sketch what the plated dish would look like, what ingredients you might use, and how you expect it to taste.    In app speak – this is the ideation, wireframing and creation stage.

Then you run through the ingredients list, the complexities of creating the dish, who might want to buy it, how many of those customers exist, and what price you might charge those diners. This is the business consideration stage.

Next, before you go too far, you “secretly” create your dishes, in a private kitchen, and get really close trusted friends to try them out. A bit like MasterChef – just not in public.   Those who try out the dishes tell you what they like and don’t like.  You tweak your dish to improve it – but caution – you don’t take forever – you need to be first with this signature dish before someone else does it. In app speak this is the prototyping and beta testing stage.

Now it’s time to get ready to launch – you translate your dish into something that the kitchen can handle in bulk, to satisfy many customers, consistently, taking due care of safety etc. In app speak this is developing the robust commercial version of the app.

You launch – This requires marketing and advertising so that people know your new dish exists, and getting positive reviews from those who try it. Hopefully, all goes well during this launch stage.

So if you have a great app idea, remember it could be the next great tasty dish. The team at are here to help – Good luck 😊


Deon de Saldanha
co-founder & lead business consultant / business coachAppsAgents-Logo-150

Woman Eating Cupcake While Standing Near Pink Background Inside Room