LAS VEGAS -- Some 1,384 buyers registered for the 2012 Amusement Expo, compared with 1,374 buyers last year. Total attendance at the third annual Amusement Expo was 2,926, according to show manager Brian Glasgow of W.T. Glasgow Inc.
While buyer attendance was up only slightly, the increase suggests that three-year-old amusement trade show, which combines the long-running (and formerly separate) shows sponsored by the Amusement and Music Operators Association and American Amusement Machine Association, will continue to draw stronger attendance than its individual predecessors.
PHOTO: John Margold (left), chairman of the American Amusement Machine Association, and AAMA president John Schultz (right), present Valley-Dynamo's Dave Courington with AAMA's Lifetime Achievement Award. AAMA's awards presentation took place during Amusement Expo's opening ceremony on March 14.
Exhibitor numbers were up 7%, with 144 companies displaying goods and services compared with 135 in 2011. The number of booths increased to 411 from 373, or 10%. | SEE 2011 REPORT
The National Bulk Vendors Association's 2012 exhibit, which collocated for a second time with Amusement Expo, had 23 exhibitors, compared with 21 last year. The NBVA booked 49 booths for those exhibitors and registered 270 participants for the show and the annual bulk vending convention.
A one-day reciprocal admission policy between Amusement Expo and the Pizza Expo drew additional visitors to both shows. This was the third time in the past four years that both show organizers agreed to honor the badges of each other's registrants.
Amusement Expo's seminar program drew 525 participants. In conjunction with the show's educational program, Foundations Entertainment University ran its acclaimed two-day FEC program. The combined educational programs featured 12 sessions.
During Amusement Expo's opening ceremonies on March 14, AAMA presented its 2011 industry awards. Its Lifetime Achievement Award was bestowed on Dave Courington of Valley-Dynamo, a past chairman of the association. Its Distributor of the Year award went to Betson Enterprises for the second consecutive year, while Manufacturer of the Year kudos was awarded to Innovative Concepts in Entertainment (ICE). MEI was recognized as Supplier of the Year.
AAMA presented a second Lifetime Achievement Award posthumously to Joel Kleiman, who died a year ago. Kleiman founded Pioneer Sales and Service in Milwaukee (now located in Menominee Falls, WI). Before that, he worked at Automatic Canteen Corp., and headed its Rowe-AMi sales division. Sam Cooper, a colleague from Canteen, was his partner and vice-president of the dealership. Jon Kleiman, Joel's son, accepted the award.
AMOA also recognized industry achievement and service during its membership breakfast on March 15. The operators association presented AMOA Innovator Awards to TouchTunes Interactive Networks for its TouchTunes Karaoke service, Coast To Coast Entertainment for its Stage 2 machine controller and Arachnid for its new online dartboard with domestic and international targeting.
The 2013 Amusement Expo will be held from March 20 to 22, Wednesday through Friday, again at the Las Vegas Convention Center (Hall N1). Next year's Pizza Expo is scheduled for March 19-21 at the LVCC in Halls 2-4. Visit amusementexpo.org for updates.