Wellness And Technology Take Center Stage At Largest-Ever NAMA Show, April 24-27 In Las Vegas

Posted On: 4/18/2019

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The National Automatic Merchandising Association's 2019 NAMA Show converges in Las Vegas on April 24 and runs through April 26. Themed "Where People, Products and Possibilities Meet" and held at the Las Vegas (NV) Convention Center, this year's vending exhibition will reach a new record in terms of square footage and number of exhibiting companies to date.

Technology and its power to fuel innovation and growth is a central theme and driving this home will be futurist and author of The Dictionary of Dangerous Ideas, Mike Walsh. He will take the stage at Wednesday's opening general session just prior to the show floor opening to deliver an inspiring keynote message about embracing the future.

His presentation, entitled "Reinventing Leadership for the Age of Machine Intelligence," will present a vivid portrait of a brave new world orchestrated by machines that think.  He'll also share how tomorrow's leaders can upgrade their capabilities to survive and thrive in an age of accelerating technology.

The trade show floor will be open on Wednesday, April 24, 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Thursday, April 25, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday, April 26, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

New and enhanced features at this year's show include the Better-For-You Pavilion – a record 3,300-sq.ft. exhibit hall destination where 30-plus companies will showcase their healthier snack and beverage products, including those that meet NAMA's FitPick criteria.

"The Better for You Pavilion, featuring products with attributes from responsibly sourced to lower calories to reduced sugar to non-GMO, is perfectly aligned with consumer trends," said NAMA vice-president of programs and services Lindsey Nelson. "Operators interested in expanding consumer choice will be able to see the variety of new products all in one place."

Additionally, the annual NAMA Public Health Advisory Council panel discussion will return on Thursday, April 25, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Moderated by Sylvia Rowe, president of SR Strategies and NAMA board member, the discussion will feature national experts as they deep dive into emerging nutrition trends, consumer consumption data and "better for you" buying patterns.

"With FitPick, NAMA has always been ahead of the curve in terms of making nutrition information available to consumers. We continue that public health commitment through continuing education including this annual, value-added session delivering expertise directly to NAMA show attendees," said NAMA vice-president of public relations Roni Moore.  "Join us for this sought-after discussion and the opportunity to get answers to your questions."

Back by popular demand is an improved New Product Zone, an interactive, high-traffic area at the entrance of the exhibit hall that highlights a collection of up-and-coming, new products for the convenience and vending industries. Showgoers will be able to not only see these new products, but also can scan those items of greatest interest and, in real time, receive a summary listing along with information about where to find their selections on the show floor.

Plus, this year will feature the new People's Choice Awards. As showgoers scan for product information, they are casting a vote to help determine the most popular of the New Product Zone. Winners will be announced at the close of the show.

The NAMA Learning Lab, a presentation arena on the show floor, will feature interactive, hands-on presentations across a range of subjects delivered by industry thought leaders.

Show-floor education will be further enhanced with the return of the Captivation Station, which made its debut last year. The dome theater provides an easily accessible area featuring 20-minute presentations by industry leaders on product and service innovations during show hours.

NAMA Show's information-packed educational agenda presented by industry experts kicks off on Tuesday, April 23, with pre-conference half-day sessions, followed by a full slate of presentations on Wednesday and Thursday mornings with tracks dedicated to consumer and industry trends, sales and business development, business operations, technology, and public health and nutrition.

On the social front, on Tuesday evening from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., NAMA's Women in the Industry (WIN) group is inviting all industry members to 1923 Bourbon Bar to kick back at the private modern 1920s-themed speakeasy bar, located in the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino.

Another opportunity to mix and mingle will be at the NAMA Jam! on Wednesday, April 24, from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., an opening-night soiree open to all showgoers with cocktails and a live performance from the award-winning Clif Bar Grove Valve Orchestra – voted best corporate band by Fortune magazine.