National Hardware Show® Experiences Packed Aisles & Attendance Increase

May 05, 2010

National Hardware Show® Experiences Packed Aisles & Attendance Increase

Exhibitors thrilled with booth traffic and orders booked

(LAS VEGAS, NV May 5, 2010) - The National Hardware Show® celebrated its second day at the Las Vegas Convention Center with an increase in traffic and big events, including the Tailgate Display & Party, which was open to all attendees and featured refreshments and live entertainment; the Homewares Show® Awards presented by the National Hardware Show and HomeWorld Business magazine; a keynote address by former Walmart Chairman Don Soderquist; a Paint & Accessories Buying Event sponsored by Lancaster; and the PDRA Retailer Awards.

Traffic was again up on Day 2 of the Show, which is completely sold out to exhibitors from the Home Improvement, Lawn & Garden/Outdoor Living, Tailgating and other key industries. The attendee list is a veritable Who's Who in important players in the home products industry, covering not only traditional retail and wholesale outlets but untraditional channels like grocery, mass, drug, catalog, Internet and international retailers. This includes industry giants like The Home Depot, Walmart, Sears, True Value, Costco, Sam's Club, Ace Hardware and many others representing more than $237 billion in sales revenue.

"Attendance continues to be up versus last year, and we continue to be impressed with the excitement and the orders being written," said Ed Several, Group Vice President & Show Manager, National Hardware Show.

"It's very upbeat," said Steve Whealon, senior vp-merchandising for Westlake Ace Hardware, which operates 88 stores in seven states. "I'm hearing vendors say that orders are increasing, and I'm seeing renewed confidence as retailers are willing to put a little more product in their supply chain."

The morning started with an announcement that the National Hardware Show and the North American Retail Hardware Association (NRHA) have reached an agreement in principle to co-locate the NRHA Annual Convention with the National Hardware Show beginning with the 2011 event, May 10-12, 2011, in Las Vegas. The 2011 National Hardware Show held in conjunction with the NRHA All-Industry Convention, will host delegations from the International Hardware Association – the first time the IHA has held a meeting in the U.S.

"It is with great honor that we are planning to welcome the NRHA, its Board members and the industry-at-large to join with us in 2011," said Dennis MacDonald, Senior Vice President, National Hardware Show, who has a 20-year tenure leading the National Hardware Show. "The co-location of our two events will enrich and fortify the platform on which we are able to connect the domestic and international hardware community to enable communication, and ultimately to serve the greater good in the industry."

Soderquist followed by delivering the day's keynote address, "Ethical Leadership; Imagine the Possible; The Impact of Culture on Success." Soderquist spoke about Walmart's rise from being a $44 million company in 1972 to a $405 billion company today, encouraging business owners in the audience to emphasize values within their companies. "You have to take time to check your coordinates and see where you're going, what direction you're flowing in," he said. "Success can be measured by more than sales and profitability."

The Homewares Show® Awards recognizing product innovation were presented to the following companies: HeatTrak for its Heated Outdoor Safety Treads (Gold Award); DewStop for the DewStop Fan Switch (Silver); Emson Inc. for the EZ Cracker with Yolk Separator (Bronze); and C.S.B. Commodities for Zipit (Honorable Mention).

The New Product Launch Spotlight Awards were also handed out, with the Gold Award going to Ames True Temper, the Silver Award to DewStop and the Bronze Award to First Alert/Jarden. "New product innovation is a big source of pride in our organization. To be recognized in this way is very rewarding for our marketing and product development teams," said Larry Baab, vice president, marketing and product development, Ames True Temper. "It's very gratifying to introduce a product and have it be previewed by top retailing and distribution companies. Winning the award just takes the cake."

The Show is proving to be a great forum for a variety of new products, including Double V Square, a triangular square tool that folds opens to a larger 90 degree square. "A lot of people have come by the booth and shown interest in the product," said Raymond Atwood, a 25-year home builder and the inventor. "Having so many people in one building and getting their feedback is invaluable. This show is distributors, retailers, manufacturers. It's the industry."

Another new product, Meadow Springs Septic Maintenance, is also making its debut at the show. This eco-friendly product is the first of its kind in the marketplace, according to Director of Consumer Sales Bill Hanes. "We've had tremendous success with meeting the buyers, not only chain hardware stores but independent groups and international buyers who have a specific need for this product," he said. "We're totally thrilled by the excitement shown by the people who have visited our booth and the orders already placed."

In other Show-related news, Popular Mechanics presented its Editor's Choice Awards, and Handy magazine and the Handyman Club of America presented "Power Tool Test Shop," where six winners of a contest sponsored by Handyman Club tested products from a number of major power tool companies. In addition, Home Channel News presented its Golden Hammer Awards in the areas of Hardware & Tools, Home Décor, LBM/Durables and Outdoor Living, while also inducting The Home Depot co-founder Pat Farrah into the Home Channel News Hall of Fame.

Tomorrow – the third and final day of the Show – will feature a Paint & Accessories Buying Event sponsored by Lancaster, a continued live broadcast from the National Hardware Show Radio Stage and a number of educational seminars, including, It's a Wired, Wired World: The Future of Retail Technology, presented by Doug Stephens, president of Retail Prophet Consulting; Growing With the Next Generation, presented by Kelly D. Norris of Rainbow Iris Farm and Paige Worthy, managing editor, Lawn & Garden Retailer; and More Effective Marketing, presented by Phil Mitchell, founding partner, Discovery-Based Retail.

The National Hardware Show® celebrates a rich history spanning 65 years of serving the home improvement marketplace. From its early beginnings in New York during the post-World War II housing boom and eventual move to Chicago in the 1970s to today's current location in Las Vegas, the National Hardware Show continually evolves through the industry's involvement, commitment and passion to improving America's quality of life through their homes. Today, the National Hardware Show is the place for global manufacturers, associations, organizations and the media to unveil their new products, ideas and insights to a broad spectrum of home improvement resellers.

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