Audio-related trade show season off to a slow start

With the turn of the calendar to 2009, the electronics industry has moved its focus away from the difficulties of last year and has begun to look forward to 2009. For many, that means making decisions on trade show attendance. For those concerned with audio, especially broadcast audio, the season is upon us.

As one might expect amid a faltering U.S. economy, both the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas and National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) show in Anaheim, CA, expected to open to modestly smaller exhibit footprints and steady or slightly lighter attendance. Still, both organizations remained upbeat, pointing out that the number of new products and technologies expected shows no signs of abatement.

The next big show for the broadcast industry, of course, is the NAB Show, scheduled for April 18-23 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Exhibit booths open April 20. The show will once again feature “content” as its unifying theme, with exhibits and events classified in accordance with their place in the content lifecycle — creation, management, commerce, distribution/delivery and consumption.

The NAB Show has become increasingly global in recent years, earning the organization the 2008 Highest Global Participation award from Trade Show Executive magazine. Out of 105,259 attendees, a record-high 28,310 were from outside the United States. In addition, 451 exhibiting companies (28 percent) were from overseas.

The NAB is expecting in excess of 1600 exhibitors across more than 1.5 million sq ft of exhibit space and attendance of more than 100,000. The organization has kicked off an aggressive marketing campaign to remind people of the convenience and savings in taking advantage of having all the industry’s manufacturers and colleagues available in one place, with all the year’s major innovations available for first-hand inspection.

Registration for the NAB show is now open, including early bird hotel deals.

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