Wednesday, 7 January 2015
V-Twin Expo 2015
15th annual V-Twin Expo to see exhibitor growth?
WITH the 15th annual V-Twin Expo at Cincinnati, Ohio, fast approaching, final preparations are underway for an event that many in the industry will be hoping will be an event that will show that the wider economic recovery is starting to trickle down convincingly into significant custom parts and accessory revenue growth.
Speaking with Easyriders Events' show organizer Jim Betlach in mid-December, it is apparent that the show continues to attract representation from pretty much all the 'core-competency' vendors in the market, and that there may be some signs of increased vendor confidence.
"There are very few, if any, of what you would term the principal 'players' in the market who will not be at V-Twin Expo again in 2015, one way or another. Many continue to manage their booth size and other expo related spends carefully, but if anything, we are going to have a few more new and returning exhibitors this time than drop-outs.
"That is a good sign for the show, but above all it is a good sign for the market. The show has served the specialty interests of the custom v-twin market through thick and thin," says Betlach.
"This will be the 15th year that V-Twin Expo will have reflected the highly specialized nature of custom market businesses, and there's no question that V-Twin Expo will remain the primary market-specific expo for years to come.
"If we are now going to start seeing stabilization in vendor and visitor numbers, then that gives the market a platform on which to build.
"I have long maintained that for so long as people want to ride Harleys and build custom bikes, there will be a need for an independent business opportunity such as that provided by V-Twin Expo.
"Where else can dealers meet so many of the vendors they could be buying from in such a concentrated way than at a show that is built for that purpose?"
Betlach's question is rhetorical of course, and it is the closest he comes to alluding to the ongoing attempts by other show organizers to stake a claim to V-Twin Expo's turf, and the other pressures, show and otherwise, that the classic B2B expo model is under in North America.
V-Twin Expo has now successfully adjusted its timings to accommodate the two biggest issues that vendor feedback provided. The timing now avoids the distractions of Superbowl Sunday, always the fist Sunday of February, and the decision to abandon the Monday has been proven to be in everyone's best interests in the context of recessionary pressures.
The 2015 V-Twin Expo will open its doors at 9:00 am on Saturday February 7th (to 6:00 pm) at the downtown Duke Energy Convention Center, Elm Street, Cincinnati, and 9:00 am Sunday February 8th (to 5:00 pm).