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KBIS and IBS thrive with joint event in Las Vegas

The decision to hold the International Builders Show with the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show worked well, according to organizers. Both of the sponsoring groups — the National Association of Home Builders and National Kitchen and Bath Association — reported increased turnout for their annual trade shows.

Thousands of builders and remodelers flocked to the International Builders Show in Las Vegas in February.

“Our attendance on the buyer side increased by about 20 percent from last year’s show. We are estimating close to 80,000 attendees overall and that’s a big growth for our show,” International Builders Show vice president of marketing Meg Meyer says.

The Kitchen & Bath Industry Show had a 145 percent increase with more than 31,000 visitors.

“We knew coming into Las Vegas that we were about to experience something ground breaking, and we weren’t disappointed,” NKBA president John Petrie said in a statement. “The co-location of KBIS and IBS allowed exhibitors and attendees to benefit from insights and product innovations serving the entire residential design and construction industry.”

Meyer also observed an industry bouncing back. “It was incredible, I’ve been going for 30 years and it felt like the old days. There was a great buzz and everybody was feeling very positive,” she says.

“There was a lot of energy at the show,” according to Jake Whittaker of Delaware Siding Company, an International Builders Show exhibitor from Bear, Del. “It was just a world of difference from the last several years. You could just tell when you walked in the hall.”

“I even had someone say there were too many people in the aisles,” adds Frank Thompson with Sweetwater Builders in Cranberry Township, Pa.

Combined or one-pass attendance for both shows eclipsed 82,000 attendees. Both events covered 650,000 sq. ft. at the Las Vegas Convention Center, marketed as part of Design & Construction Week, which also included the International Window Coverings Expo.

KBIS had 500 exhibitors, including 135 first-timers. “This year’s show saw more top brands, more new products and more innovation,” says Brian Pagel of Emerald Expositions, the show’s producer.

The shows will meet again next year, Jan. 20-22, in Las Vegas. 

This article originally appeared in the April 2014 issue.

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