Dealer Expo 2014: Behind the decision... and the promise

Publish Date: 
Nov 1, 2013
By Tracy Harris

DEALER EXPO in 2014 will be a brand-new show addressing the industry’s current – and future – needs.

It’s a complete restructuring of the industry’s largest and longest running event, and it would not have been possible without the active involvement of the many dealers, manufacturers, distributors and service providers who were very vocal about what they needed.

Dealer Expo 2014, to be held Dec. 5-7 at Chicago’s McCormick Place, will showcase next year’s new product introductions not only with exciting displays but also with valuable demonstrations on how to order, stock, merchandise and sell.

Dealer Expo 2014 is now timed according to the retailers’ new buying cycle. Many dealers – even those in colder climates – now make most of their decisions on what lines to carry during the latter part of the fourth quarter so they can be inventoried by January and ready to sell as soon as the outside temperature hits 45 degrees. (If you’re a dealer in the Mid-Atlantic or Midwest you know some customers want their bikes out of storage by mid-February!)

Dealer Expo 2014 will provide a comprehensive retail symposium that will provide new ideas, new methods and new conversations for running your businesses successfully in the new economy.

Dealer Expo 2014 will celebrate our industry’s achievements – from the 23rd Annual Top 100 Dealer Competition Awards Gala to the 50th Anniversary of Dealernews.

Dealer Expo 2014 moves to its new home in downtown Chicago – a major city within easy driving and flying reach, with affordable hotel rates, easy show shuttle services and a variety of entertainment options.

We know time is money. Dealer Expo 2014 will be designed so that you can get in, get your business done, and get out. Or, stay a while and enjoy the show. It’s up to you.

There’s been a lot of conjecture about what the industry – manufacturers, distributors and retailers – told us when we asked them to help us build a brand-new Dealer Expo. Here’s what I can tell you.

The manufacturers and distributors made it clear that their participation hinged on Dealer Expo’s ability to bring in more buyers as well as more international participants. Period. Every decision on location, timing and what the show would provide had to be based on delivering retail and international attendance, they said.

However, when it came to selecting new Q4 dates for Dealer Expo, the manufacturers and distributors requested that we stay away from the European shows (EICMA, Intermot) and SEMA, all of which are held in October and November. They also requested that Dealer Expo not conflict with PRI, held in mid-December. Why? Because these are important events for manufacturers and distributors selling products into international markets and, in the case of SEMA, specialty automotive. (continued)