Show Wrap

Saturday, November 30, 2002

U.S. peace is Medtrade's prosperity
ATLANTA - What a difference a year makes.

Last year, Medtrade suffered a 17% decrease in attendance, largely due to fallout from the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center. This year, the show recorded a preliminary increase of 10.5%, coming in at 22,500 - 2,500 more than the projected 20,000, said Cory Smith, group show director for VNU Expositions.
Even the industry's worry over the possibility that Washington lawmakers might implement national competitive bidding for DME didn't dampen the show's spirits. Jam-packed educational conferences and heavy traffic flow in both exposition halls drove that point home.

"It's probably the best first day in five years," said Jeffrey Wilde, vice president of marketing at Hunt-Wilde in Tampa, Fla., which makes handle grips. "I've already signed up for next year."

In part, Smith attributed the show's success to Medtrade's beefed up educational tracks and additional CEU units. With the industry becoming more complicated all the time, providers need information and training to stay on top of it, Smith said.

Exhibitor Richard Davis agreed. About 120 people attended his seminar "Strategic Planning: It's time for your annual Business Checkup."

"It's evident to me that people want to know how they can more effectively manage their business in light of competitive bidding and other things that could be coming down the pike," he said. HME