Costs could defeat McCormick

Tim Hanrahan

Published: September 11, 2009 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Processes, Recycling, Suppliers, Machinery

As in the past, after the NPE plastics industry trade show has packed up and moved on, questions arise as to the value received from the show and McCormick Place and Chicago.

As a person who has attended NPE shows since the 1980s and been responsible for our show booth design and setup for approximately 20 years, I believe I am qualified to comment on some of the conditions and issues within McCormick Place.

The rumor mill

Despite many horror stories that circulate regarding McCormick Place and the trade unions, I believe that most of the stories are possibly urban myths. I have not witnessed any of the rumored problems in the past regarding uncooperative workers, bribes or payoffs. I have found most of the tradespeople to be courteous and professional and, for the most part, qualified for the job.

However, one issue that continues to cause concern is the amount of money required to exhibit in NPE. For those of you who attend the show but are not responsible for signing the time sheets and payment checks for the show, I am sure you have heard that it is expensive yet you probably have never heard much about the actual costs.

The Pepsi incident

Here is one small, but particularly galling example that just about everyone can relate to:

During the NPE2009 show, we ran out of soft drinks and ordered more through the Chicago Restaurant Partners LLC office. We ordered four cases of Pepsi products. I believe that if we traveled to a local grocery store, the total purchase would be around $30. Well, in McCormick Place $30 does not go very far.

The price of four cases of Pepsi products in McCormick Place typifies, for us, the general attitude and prices charged exhibitors.

The total charge for four cases of Pepsi, delivered to our booth, was $345.39. The invoice breaks down to $254 for the four cases of Pepsi, a 21 percent service charge, and a 10.25 percent Illinois state sales tax, a 3 percent Chicago soft drink tax, a tax on the service charge, and a food and beverage tax. Government taxes totaled $38.06, which is more than the legitimate retail price of the soft drinks.

Now, a nice man in a tuxedo delivered the Pepsi, along with a couple of buckets of ice and a few cups. Good service? Sure, but not worth $345.39.

I could go on. A $640 dollar TV stand rental is another good example. But you get the point. Paying a premium for convenience is one thing, but the McCormick prices are ridiculous, and the cumulative effect can add up to enough aggravation to be the tipping point when it comes time to decide on whether to exhibit at the next NPE, or not.

Hanrahan is CEO of Erema North America Inc. in Ipswich, Mass., a supplier of plastics recycling machinery and systems, as well as service, parts and technical support.


Comments

Costs could defeat McCormick

Tim Hanrahan

Published: September 11, 2009 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Optical disc molder OEM getting into micromolding with acquisition of CDA

August 29, 2014 11:24 am ET

Optical disc replicator and molder Optical Experts Manufacturing Inc. of Charlotte, N.C., has expanded its core business and entered new high...    More

Image

Baxter investing $300 million to expand dialyzers production in Alabama

August 29, 2014 12:53 pm ET

Baxter International, Inc. is expanding its Opelika, Ala. manufacturing location to boost production of dialyzers, a key component of hemodialysis...    More

Image

Obituary: Jerry Williams, Prism Plastics co-owner

August 29, 2014 8:50 am ET

Williams founded Prism Plastics with Rod Bricker and Gerry Phillips, after the three left Huron Plastics Group in 1999.    More

Image

EPA fines RI polymer company

August 29, 2014 1:20 pm ET

A Rhode Island polymer manufacturer has reached a $60,000 settlement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for violating federal clean...    More

Image

Haitian's standardization efforts paying off

August 29, 2014 9:53 am ET

Streamlined design efforts and robust export sales helped propel Ningbo, China-based injection molding machine manufacturer Haitian International Hold...    More

Market Reports

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report analyzes economic and market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as growth strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies.

Learn more

Pipe, Profile & Tubing Extrusion in North America 2014

U.S. demand for extruded plastics is expected to grow by 3 percent in 2014, with PVC remaining the largest segment.

Plastic pipe will post the strongest gains through 2018, continuing to take market share from competing materials in a range of markets.

Our latest market report provides in-depth analysis of current trends and their financial impact on the pipe, profile and tubing extrusion industry in North America.

Learn more

2014 Injection Molding Industry Report

GROWTH, OPPORTUNITY IN SIGHT FOR INJECTION MOLDERS IN 2014

In the wake of the economic turbulence earlier in this decade, molders today find themselves in much better shape. Molders are gaining a competitive advantage by investing in people, equipment and seeking inroads into new markets on a global scale.

Growth in the injection molding industry is going to be driven by low financing costs and a continued move to reshore some business.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events