Just one year shy of its 20th anniversary, Knowledgefest 2012 has blossomed into an event that will break attendance records this summer while offering an expanded range of educational programs, a packed show floor of exhibitors, and countless networking opportunities.
It will be held Aug. 18-21 at the Gaylord Texan Hotel and Conference Center. This year’s theme is, “The Playbook: Retail Growth Through Proactive Strategy.”
The event, which had its first showing in August of 1993, is on course to welcome over 1,000 retailers, which is up significantly since last year, according to Chris Cook, president of the Mobile Electronics Retailers Association.
Last year’s Knowledgefest—which drew about 800 folks—was well represented by retailers from across the country. Cook said there were people from 42 states at last year’s show including retailers from Alaska and Hawaii. He expects attendees from across the country again this year—one of the primary reasons that this year’s chosen location is Dallas.
“We moved it from where it was held by the previous owners and wanted to put it in a primary city,” Cook explained. “It makes it easier to get to for everyone and we wanted attendees to have reasonable air fares and flights. We need to consider that we want to take less time out of a retailer’s day. Above all, we’re trying to keep the total cost—flight and hotel—to under $1,000.”
“This year’s event is shaping up to be bigger than last year and we’re seeing a much bigger jump in exhibitors,” he noted, and added that 10 new exhibitors have joined up. Currently the show is tracking to sell out of exhibit space. There will be 22 educational sessions in three days for owners/managers, sales staff, and installation technicians. In addition, said Cook, there will be 36 manufacturer training sessions held in conjunction with the show.
“We changed the flow this year so there are dedicated education sessions in the morning and then there is dedicated show floor/exhibit time in the afternoon,” Cook said. “We separated them and decided to do it this way so no one feels like they are missing out whatever it is that they are doing.”
The Mobile Electronics magazine Industry Awards will be presented Sunday night on the show floor.
And just so you know, it’s not all about work and no play. After hours, there will be Knowledgefest Live, which will feature “live bands and music that fits our industry,” said Cook. It will be held at the Glass Cactus nightclub.
For more details on Knowledgefest 2010, visit www.knowledgefest.org.