Plastics News, like all companies during this extraordinary period of change and uncertainty, is faced with unusual, challenging business decisions. We have chosen to forge ahead with our Plastics Encounter Atlanta trade show and conference in mid-November. And, after much deliberate thought and debate, we've decided to postpone for one year the Executive Forum we were planning for late January in Phoenix.
In the interest of trying, as urged by President George W. Bush, to resume business as usual after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, we feel it appropriate to proceed with our Nov. 13-15 Atlanta Encounter at the Georgia International Convention Center. Plastics USA set a strong, honorable example for this in early October in Chicago, and we believe we can help to spur plastics industry business activity and growth in the Southeast and beyond by proceeding with this event now.
As the only plastics trade show in the South this year, the Atlanta Encounter largely is a regional event, meaning the majority of attendees will be able to drive to the show. While some exhibitors have withdrawn in the past month, others have signed on.
The Atlanta event will offer attendees a smorgasbord of activities. These include the trade show, with its 100-plus exhibitors; a very strong business conference program; two-day extrusion and injection molding training seminars; a collocated, regional Society of Plastics Engineers extrusion MiniTec; and a free, educational risk-management seminar put on by Enron Global Markets LLC and the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. We feel strongly that the show must go on, and that we can deliver quality and value to those who participate.
Additionally, all 21 of the confirmed speakers and moderators for the general business and technology conference Nov. 13-14 remain on board, prepared to deliver a timely, dynamic program. Given that some of the presenters will be addressing topics such as the prospects for the U.S. manufacturing economy, plastics industry business confidence, and where to find government resources for worker training, their talks have taken on an even greater degree of relevancy.
Separately, meanwhile, we have decided to postpone the fourth edition of the Plastics News Executive Forum at Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak Resort in Phoenix — pushing it back almost exactly one year to Jan. 26-28, 2003. This event attracts senior plastics industry executives from across North America. Given the travel restrictions and budget cuts being imposed by so many companies, we feel the market will have more of an appetite for such an event once the economy brightens and the nation's nerves have had time to settle.
Looking ahead, we remain convinced that the plastics industry stands to benefit from high-quality, regionally oriented events. As a result, we intend to go forward with our full Plastics Encounter show schedule for next year, including Memphis, Tenn. (April 16-18); Indianapolis (Sept. 17-19); and Long Beach, Calif. (Nov. 5-7). We hope to see you soon — in Atlanta, or at one of our other events.