You are here

CABDA West opens with education day, big growth in brands and registered retailers

Published January 14, 2020

SAN DIEGO (BRAIN) — As trade exhibitors move in to the Del Mar Racetrack convention space Tuesday, some retailers are already taking part in CABDA West's Education Day, which includes events by Bosch and the Professional Bicycle Mechanics Association. 

The second edition of CABDA's West Coast event boasts a big increase in expected retailer attendance and exhibitor count. Show organizers also are expecting better weather, a relief from the sometimes soggy first edition last year. 

Outside the convention center Tuesday, Benita Warns sat in a T-shirt, enjoying weather likely much more pleasant than at home in St. Paul, Minnesota. "I'm just soaking up the sun, it's absolutely better than home!" Warns said. 

This will be Midway's first time exhibiting at the San Diego show, but the small distributor has attended every recent CABDA Midwest event. 

"The reason for coming here is we will be exposed to whole lot of shops that wouldn’t make the trip all the way to Chicago. And we're tryin to build more winter business for Midway, and there are bike shops here that have needs all year long, so we are looking to grow that business."

Midway specializes in sales to non-profit shops and collectives. It had its biggest sales year ever in 2019, Warns said. 

"We feel very good about being at CABDA, they take good care of us. CABDA understands what it’s like to be an underdog, and they are cheering for us because we are an underdog," she said. 

Show director James Kersten told BRAIN he's anticipating more than 2,200 attendees this week. "We're at about 1,925 pre-registered attendees from 585 shops, and we'll be adding more (Tuesday), plus the on site registrations. Last year we did 1,445 attendees from 448 shops, with about 370 attendees registering on site," Kersten said.

"We're pulling very well from Southern California and Central Arizona. We have close to 40 shops making the trip from the Pacific Northwest including about a dozen from British Columbia. We've got shops from Mexico, Alaska, Hawaii, and Texas ... Definitely a wider net this year!"

On the exhibitor front, CABDA will have 205 exhibitors occupying about 85,000 square feet of floorspace. "It's difficult to count the individual brands because of the rep groups and distributors that take larger space and display multiple brands, but it's probably around 350-400. Last year we had 179 exhibitors in about 65,000 square feet of exhibit space," Kersten said.

Other improvements this year: CABDA tripled the number of food vendors and moved all pre- and post-show events onto the show footprint. Last year those events will held in nearby hotels.  CABDA also moved all long format clinics and seminars to Tuesday.

The show opens Wednesday at 9 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. On Thursday the show runs 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The next CABDA events this winter are the CABDA Midwest show, Feb. 12-13 in Chicago, and CABDA East, a first-time event, planned for March 11-12 at the Meadowlands Expo Center in Secaucus, N.J.

Topics associated with this article: CABDA

Join the Conversation