Medtrade director: Two exibitors do not make or break a trade show

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11/16/2007

HME News asked Medtrade Show Director Kevin Bird a few questions about Invacare's decision not to attend the Medtrade shows next year. Here's what he had to say:

HME News: Did Invacare's announcement take you by surprise?

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Kevin Bird: We’ve been working with Invacare for years as partners on the show. They have been a pioneer in both the industry and as a participant in the Medtrade shows. We have worked with them very closely in the past few months to satisfy their wants and needs from the show. During this time we crafted opportunities for them and they ended up choosing another path.

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HME: With Invacare and Permobil opting not to attend the Medtrade shows next year, do you expect other exhibitors to follow?
Bird: One or two companies do not make or break a trade show. This gives an opportunity to their competition to increase their presence in front of the Medtrade attendees.

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HME: Invacare and Permobil must see value in doing something outside the Medtrade shows. Given that, what value do the Medtrade shows offer exhibitors?
Bird: The value that Medtrade offers to the exhibitors remains unchanged because the value that Medtrade offers to the attendees remains the same, if not more valuable. The exhibitors benefit from the show by being able to network and negotiate with and sell to the attendees that are there for the education and product knowledge. None of that changes. There are just two fewer companies to show their products.

HME: Do you plan any changes in 2008 that may increase the show’s value to exhibitors?
Bird: There is a misconception about the importance of a trade show in general, not just Medtrade. The value for an exhibitor is not inherently tied to anything that the trade show producer does for them…but what a trade show producer does to attract the attendees. We are in the process of planning for the 2008 shows and how to enhance the offerings for our attendees. As these plans get finalized, we will definitely keep the industry up-to-date.

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