The International Converting Exhibition the former CMM show, now under new ownership has relocated from Chicago to the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla., for the next ICE USA in 2011.
It's another blow to Chicago, which has lost the next two NPE plastics trade shows to Orlando. ICE officials blamed high costs of holding a trade show in Chicago.
The lower costs, simpler work rules and more flexible logistics in Orange County will cut costs dramatically as well as enable ICE USA to build a more dynamic show experience by attracting new participants and encouraging larger and better exhibits, said Bob Chiricosta, director of sales and marketing for Mack Brooks Exhibitions Inc. in Burlington, Mass.
ICE USA organizer England-based Mack Brooks Exhibitions Ltd. expects the show, set for April 6-8, 2011, to draw more than 300 exhibitors and 5,000 attendees or more to Orlando.
ICE USA will be held every two years, and Mack Brooks has committed to holding the trade show in Orlando for the next two shows, or 2011 and 2013, according to Chiricosta.
ICE USA is billed as a new U.S. trade show for the paper, film and foil converting industry. In November, Mack Brooks Exhibitions of St. Albans, England, bought the CMM brand from Pennwell Inc. of Tulsa, Okla.
Chiricosta said the CMM show has been shrinking in recent years, and it has experienced several changes in ownership and management.
After the 2005 CMM, the show moved from Chicago's McCormick Place to the smaller Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Ill., where it remained in 2007 and 2009. The last CMM in June of 2009 drew fewer than 2,000 visitors, according to Mack Brooks Exhibitions.
After buying the CMM brand, Mack Brooks talked to exhibitors. They all were pretty clear that Chicago was a negative. They will be able to bring more machinery to the show in Orlando than they would in Chicago, Chiricosta said. Lots of working machinery is a strong attraction for the show, he said.
Mack Brooks reviewed other venues. We learned that the escalating costs associated with the traditional Chicago venues were limiting the amount of equipment that exhibitors were willing to run at the show, he said. Our exhibitors know that displaying machinery is the most effective way to exhibit at trade shows.
Chiricosta said the higher costs in Chicago are not just union labor and rigid work rules. Orlando also is less expensive for airline flight costs, hotels, restaurants and even parking and cabs, he said.
The Washington-based Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. cited many of those same arguments when it announced the decision in November to leave McCormick Place and move NPE to the Orange County Convention Center for the next two events, NPE2012 and NPE2015. Chicago had been home to the show since 1971.
Like ICE USA, SPI leaders also said lower costs in Orlando would enable exhibitors to bring more running machines and showcase new technology.
ICE is basically a machinery show, Chiricosta said. Exhibitors show equipment covering a range of processes, including coating and laminating, slitting and rewinding, finishing, treating, drying and curing, control and measurement and treating.
Mack Brooks also runs ICE Europe in Munich; ICE South America in São Paulo; and ICE Asia in Shanghai.
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