|Atlanta and the Georgia World Congress Center again play host to IWF 2006. The show takes place Aug. 23-26.|
IWF 2006 At A Glance
Dates: Aug. 23-26
Exhibit Hours: Wednesday - Saturday, 8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Cost: $10 for a four-day exhibit pass if purchased by July 21. After that date, the price rises to $25.
Location: Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, GA.
Transportation: The IWF will again offer its free shuttle service, running between the GWCC and many area hotels.
Exhibitors: More than 1,379 domestic and international manufacturers and distributors of woodworking equipment and supplies (as of early July).
Seminars/Exhibinars: Educational programs covering a variety of different topics will be available each day. Find the complete schedule and cost information for both programs on pages 88 and 94
Challengers Awards: Judging will take place Aug. 22, with awards handed out on Aug. 23.
Design Emphasis Awards: Judging will be held on Aug. 21, with the awards presented on Aug. 23. For more information see page 92.
Show Sponsors: American Home Furnishings Alliance, Wood Machinery Manufacturers of America and Woodworking Machinery Industry Assn.
Information: Visit www.iwf2006.com, or phone (404) 693-8333.
As of early July, 1,379 companies had contracts to exhibit at the show, and more than 9,000 interested buyers had already pre-registered. These numbers are strong, but as LaFramboise says, numbers arenât everything.
âItâs really not all about numbers, and Iâm not trying to use that as an excuse. At IWF 2004, which had a slight drop-off in terms of the total number of people who came to the show, most exhibitors had their most productive show in terms of sales and leads generated in recent memory,â says LaFramboise. âSo itâs not just about the numbers. Itâs about the quality of the buyer and the level of interest that a buyer has in making a purchase.â
For McBroom, a prosperous IWF 2006 will hinge on the mutual success of the showâs exhibitors and buyers.
âExhibitors measure the success of the show by contacts made, sales completed and closed, and prospects to follow up on. The buyers who come to the show measure success on having the ability to find solutions to their situations. If they can come and find exhibitors providing ways to improve their productivity and meet their production needs, they will see this as a success,â McBroom says. âAnd if the show is successful for one of the parties, it should be successful for the other.â
Both McBroom and LaFramboise expect buyers at IWF 2006 to be in search of equipment and advice that can help them incorporate Lean Manufacturing into their production processes. With foreign competition continuing to drive the North American woodworking industries, the time is now to be doing more with less.
âLean Manufacturing is a consistent theme throughout our industry,â LaFramboise says. âAnd this isnât news, youâve heard it before, but the focus is ever sharper on improving the manufacturing process.â
The Challengers Distinguished Achievement Awards
An estimated 96 entries submitted by 74 companies worldwide will compete for The Challengers Distinguished Achievement Awards, to be presented at the International Woodworking Fair, Aug. 23-26 in Atlanta, GA.
Old and New
The GWCC will again be home to IWF, and LaFramboise reports that show space is approaching the capacity point of 850,000 square feet between Buildings A, B, C and beyond. Also of note, since 2004 the GWCC has added more wireless internet spots throughout the facility.
âWeâre maxing out the show floor, and because of the demand, weâre going back to the concourses and into the meeting rooms again â like we used to when the building was smaller,â says LaFramboise.
While the surroundings of this yearâs IWF may be the same, the showâs dates are a little different. In years past, the show began on a Thursday and ended on Sunday. The dates for IWF 2006 have been shifted up in the week â beginning on a Wednesday and ending on Saturday.
The advantage to this small change, says McBroom, is that it looks like attendees are planning on staying through the final day of the show, whereas they might not have in the past. In fact, McBroom says that the number of attendees who have already committed to hotel rooms for the week is way up from 2004.
Design Emphasis, a furniture design competition for students, offers design students a unique opportunity to demonstrate their talent and originality before a judging panel of furniture industry designers, manufacturing and retail executives and members of the trade press who have design-oriented backgrounds.
âA show is only good if people come to it and registration is one way to measure whether people will be coming or not,â McBroom says. âBut the registration is inexpensive in comparison to guaranteeing a hotel room for one night, $175 versus $10. This is telling me that people are planning to come.â
Also new to IWF this year are two Exhibinars â technical sessions hosted by companies exhibiting at the show. Dekker Vacuum Technologies Inc. and TRAKware Systems Inc. will be the inaugural presenters at this yearâs Exhibinars.
âItâs an opportunity for our exhibitors to be a part of the technical or educational portion of our program,â says LaFramboise. âTwo companies have taken advantage of this opportunity and are getting a chance to get out in front of our public.â
What's An Exhibitor?
New to IWF this year, Exhibinars are technical seminars presented by exhibiting companies that will cover content in the areas of their industry expertise. The sessions, running between 2 to 21/2 hours, cost $30 if pre-registered by July 21. After that date, the cost rises to $40 per session. Look below for a complete schedule of this yearâs Exhibinars, or find more information at www.iwf2006.com, or phone (404) 693-8333.
The Home Stretch
LaFramboise says that the month leading up to the show will be marked by a comprehensive media blitz, ensuring that exhibitors are inundated with interested buyers come August. No matter what an exhibitorâs or buyerâs goal for IWF 2006 may be, McBroom and LaFramboise say that the show is certain to have something for everyone.
âThe reason why I think that our registration numbers are holding up so strongly is that there is a lot of interest in purchasing equipment and supplies right now,â says LaFramboise. âAnd there is no better place to find them than at IWF.â
Learn Something, Too
The IWF 2006 Technical Conference Program kicks off on the Fairâs opening day, Aug. 23, and runs through Aug. 26. The sessions, running between 11/2 to 2 hours, cost $30 if pre-registered by July 21. After that date, the cost rises to $40 per session. Look below for a complete schedule to this yearâs program, or find more information at www.iwf2006.com, or phone (404) 693-8333.
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