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NAB 2010 holding its own

 

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More than 85,000 audio, video and film content professionals from 156 countries are expected to attend the event.

Organizers of the 2010 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show at the Las Vegas Convention Center this week are “feeling pretty good” that attendance and exhibitor participation will equal or exceed its 2009 numbers.

More than 85,000 audio, video and film content professionals from 156 countries are expected to attend the event, which began April 10 and continues through April 15. NAB is the world’s largest electronic media show covering filmed entertainment and the development, management and delivery of content across all mediums.


Among the 1,500 or so exhibitors are 497 international exhibitors and 200 new exhibitors which bodes well considering the dour economic climate. Although the number of this year’s exhibitors is comparable to 2009’s show attendance, Dennis Wharton, executive vice president of media relations for NAB, said exhibit square footage was down. He was not able to provide a percentage as to how much as of press time. Major companies returning to the NAB Show include Adobe, Avid, Grass Valley, Harris, Microsoft, Panasonic, Sony and Verizon Wireless.

NAB Showfloor Video

“We are cautiously optimistic that we will equal or top last year’s attendance of 83,000,” Wharton said. “We have been aided by the fact that a huge segment of our attendees are international…that’s one in four attendees from outside the United States.”

Wharton added there are several factors contributing to attendee interest for this year’s conference and tradeshow, including the Las Vegas hotel community offering very attractive room rates, consumer optimism and a strong education program. The show is offering about 500 conference and training sessions this year.

“Two months ago we were running about 20 percent below last year’s attendance, but we have seen a very strong close,” Wharton said Sunday, the day prior to the opening of the tradeshow hall. “It’s looking like we will be above last year’s attendance of just over 83,000.”

Three-dimensional, broadband and “mobile D-TV” are some of the forces driving the industry and NAB attendance, Wharton added.

“This show has always been organic with exhibitors coming and going,” Wharton said. “But the one constant is that if you are in the communications business and you want to be thought of as a serious player, you need to be at the NAB convention because of its global reach and impact. We have studies that indicate we (exhibitors) have done $30 billion in sales generated in the weeks leading up to the NAB show and a couple weeks after in terms of products and services demonstrated on the NAB show floor.”

Wharton added that strong attendance this year will help boost exhibitor participation for the 2011 show.

 

Aleta Walther is a marketing communications professional and freelance writer with several years experience as a corporate exhibit manager. Contact Aleta at aw@waltherstewart.com.

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