Canadian Plastics

NPE shifts to Orlando in 2012, 2015

The NPE trade shows in 2012 and 2015 will be held in Orlando, Fla.

November 17, 2009   Canadian Plastics

The NPE trade shows in 2012 and 2015 will be held in Orlando, Fla.

According to the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc.(SPI), which produces the show, NPE2012 is set for April 1-5 at Orlando’s Orange County Convention Center. The show in 2015 will be held at the same venue from March 22-26.

This marks the first time since 1971 that the triennial NPE will not be staged at Chicago’s McCormick Place.


“I recognize that this is a big change for a show that has had its home in Chicago for the past 14 cycles,” SPI president and CEO William Carteaux said in an email to SPI members. “But, 2009 has been a year built on change, and the move to Orlando is one that will help see this industry through its recent challenges and emerge even stronger.”

In a news release, SPI said that high costs associated with McCormick Place were a factor in the decision, and that the venue change could yield up to US$20 million in savings for the plastics industry.

An SPI study comparing venues in Chicago and Orlando revealed that holding NPE2012 in Orlando would provide big reductions in the chief expenses incurred by exhibitors and attendees. “These reductions could save the two groups an average of: 48% on utilities for booths; 19% on on-site hauling (“drayage”) and rigging services for exhibitors; 23% on lodging; and 11% on travel,” SPI said.

“SPI’s primary goal is to create the highest possible return on investment for both NPE exhibitors and attendees,” said Christopher Keller, vice-chairman of the SPI Board and president of The Conair Group and IPEG. “This exercise is part of SPI’s overall initiative to help infuse cash back into the plastics industry during these unprecedented economic times.”

SPI also noted three other innovations to NPE2012 accompanying the change of venue. First, the switch to early April from the traditional late-June dates will allow more time for exhibitors to follow up on inquiries and leads generated before summer vacations. Second, instead of the traditional Monday opening day, NPE2012 will start on Sunday, with educational programs and other special events; the trade show will be open from Monday through Thursday, eliminating the sparsely attended final half-day of previous shows. Third, SPI promised to address the longstanding wish of attendees and exhibitors that exhibits be grouped by product category.

The Orange County Convention Center in Orlando offers 2.1 million sq.ft. (195,000 sq.m) of exhibit space in two large exhibit halls. The halls are connected by a 1,500-ft. (460-m) walkway with moving sidewalks. Adjacent to the exhibit areas are 74 meeting rooms (235 breakouts). The total parking capacity is 8,227. According to the Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Inc., there are 115,000 hotel rooms in the Orlando area, 9,100 of them within walking distance from the center. Orlando International Airport is 20 minutes away.

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