The 2008 Expo, at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas on February 21-23 featured 1,060 booths and 442 exhibiting companies covering 106,000 net square feet of exhibit space.
The exhibit hall once again was filled with the industry’s top suppliers, manufacturers and leaders displaying an incredible array of roofing materials and related products, including gutters, insulation, ladders, coatings & adhesives, built up, fasteners, machinery equipment & tools, metal roofing, modified bitumen, roof & decking materials, roof pavers, walkways & ballast, shingles, skylights, slate, spray polyurethane foam, tile, vapor retarders, ventilation, waterproofing, and much more.
“The International Roofing Expo continues to be the ultimate gathering for the industry,” said Donna Bellantone, Director of the IRE. “The show is a great venue for the most influential players to help drive the future direction of our industry.”
Of the 442 exhibiting companies, almost 100 were first-time exhibitors or exhibitors who haven’t exhibited in several years. Among the new exhibitors were Advanced Green Technologies, AirTight Insulation, Brandguard Vents, C.H. Hanson, Cut Technologies Metal, DiBenedetto Tile, Fasco America, Gutter Roof, Hunter Warfield, Insul Roof Tile, Ladder Port, LiveRoof, Luma Resources, NewTech, PermaDri, Quick Mount PV, RKW US, Sheffield Metals, Simpson Strong-Tie, Temple-Inland, Truco, Tuff Toe, Wayne County Rubber, Xactware and Zimmerman Metals, just to name a few.
“I attend this show for the seminars and new products which are really beneficial to my business,” said Chris Underwood of Formation Roofing & Sheet Metal.
A full array of professionals representing the roofing industry visited the show, including commercial and residential contractors, architects, engineers, consultants, building owners, facility managers, manufacturers, distributors, foremen, superintendents, project managers and other ancillary industry professionals.
At press time, final verified attendance numbers were not available, but preliminary numbers indicate attendance was flat from last year’s record-breaking number of 9,020.
Exhibitors noted the show’s success as they benefited from steady traffic and solid attendance. “We were so pleased with the attendance,” said Berle Blehm of Level Rite Ladder Safety Tools. “Orders for our products exceeded our expectations.”
In addition to the show floor’s buying and selling activity, the Expo’s educational conference featured 48 educational sessions addressing a myriad of industry issues, including 17 technical and 5 workplace safety classes, as well as 26 business-related sessions including leadership/management, legal/HR, money matters, sales & service and general business.
Conference attendees grew by more than 10 percent and totaled an impressive 5,200 sessions sold. Especially packed were the 9 sessions addressing the green/eco-friendly topics, reinforcing the industry’s efforts to increase global awareness, resulting in a cleaner and safer environment.
“It was impressive show and conference,” said Bob Kulp, Kulp’s of Stratford. “I always learn a lot at the seminars and enjoy immensely the cross pollination of ideas with other roofing professionals from all over the world.”
Speaking to a standing room only crowd of over 1,100 attendees and exhibitors, the show’s opening day featured an inspirational Keynote Address by former NFL quarterback, Archie Manning. Sharing personal anecdotes from his 15-year career, he discussed the principles he used throughout his career for success, including developing an attitude of leadership, depending on others, being flexible and playing the game. Manning, who concluded his speech by tossing footballs into the audience, is the father of back-to-back Super Bowl champion sons, Peyton and Eli. “Manning provided a humorous, yet serious presentation that was well received by the audience,” said Kim Rogers, marketing manager. “It really set the tone for an energy-filled opening day.”
Attendees sharpened their skills at live demonstrations, providing hands-on training, techniques and tips from APOC/Gardner-Gibson, Gaco Western, Ashland, Johns Manville and Duro-Last. Covering topics from roof restoration procedures, cold applied waterproofing, solar power, attic ventilation, weather resistive barriers, automated insulation fastening system, each demo was 45 minutes in length.
Through the Exhibitor Product Clinics, DCI Products, DuPont, Eternabond, Grace, OMG and USG demonstrated their equipment and materials, covering attic ventilation, attic wrap and roof liners, roof repairs, weather resistive barriers, roof boards and green roofing.