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CABDA shows expanding to Denver and New York area

Published February 15, 2019

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (BRAIN) — The Chicagoland Area Bicycle Dealers Association will continue to expand its reach far from the shores of Lake Michigan in the next 12 months.

CABDA's Midwest show closed Thursday and organizers announced two new venues for its next season.

In October this year, CABDA will launch a demo event in the Denver area. Then in early 2020, CABDA will repeat its San Diego and Chicago shows in January and February, respectively, then follow up with a trade event at the Meadowlands Complex, in New Jersey outside New York City, in March.

CABDA's Jim Kersten said the show calendar separates the San Diego, Chicago and New York events by roughly 30-day windows, allowing exhibitors to ship displays between the shows without having to store them.

The Denver event is unlike the others. Instead of a trade hall, it will be held at one of two outdoor venues that CABDA is considering, and the demo will be open to consumers for at least part of its open hours.

"The [bike] manufacturers want something like this. It's a tougher sell for the [parts and accessories] distributors," Kersten said. "We need 900 to 950 stores within a 400-mile radius to have a good trade show. We get that in Chicago, San Diego and New York, but we can't get those kinds of numbers in the Rockies. So Denver will be some type of hybrid consumer/trade show model. We'll see how it works. If it does, it would be something we could do in other smaller markets, like Portland or in the South."

Emerald Expositions, the owner of Interbike, has floated the idea of holding a bike trade event during its November Outdoor Retailer show in Denver. CABDA's October event in Denver might pre-empt Emerald's idea. Emerald also has raised the idea of holding a bike demo event during the OR Summer show, held in July in Denver.

Kersten left little doubt that he still considers Emerald a competitor, even after the company canceled its 2019 Interbike show. At the CABDA Midwest event, he denied a show badge for an Emerald representative who he said was trying to sell booth space at upcoming Emerald bike shows.

"We had reports that she was 'suitcasing' our show in California," Kersten said. "We've badged folks from other shows, but they know better than to be actively pitching a competing event on our show floor."

Kersten, who owns a bike shop, said he attended Interbike as a retailer and never actively sold space for the CABDA show while he was there.

As for this year's Chicago event, Kersten said it was CABDA's biggest show yet, with 2,200-2,400 attendees over two days and 207 exhibitors. Three other exhibitors were unable to get to the show because of a snowstorm in Wisconsin. 


Topics associated with this article: CABDA

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