ALEXANDRIA, VA, 2015-10-30 — /EPR Retail News/ — The 2015 NACS Show attracted a record 24,392 registered attendees, of which 9,038 were classified as buyers (retailers, convenience distributors). The total number of registered attendees, which includes Petroleum Equipment Institute (PEI) buyer registration, was 3.3% higher than last year and topped the previous attendance record set in 2004.
The 2015 NACS Show also attracted a record 2,490 international attendees representing 73 countries (another record), showcasing the event’s importance to the success of the global convenience and fuel retailing industry.
Expo Continues Growth
The 2015 NACS Show, which took place October 11–14 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, is one of the top 40 largest trade shows in the United States. The size of the NACS Show expo increased 2% over 2014, with 1,264 exhibiting companies. The record-setting 412,600 net-square-foot expo also featured 228 companies new to the NACS Show, of which 154 were part of the expo’s New Exhibitor Area.
Extending the value of the expo to both retailers and suppliers, the popular Cool New Products Preview Room showcased 311 products and services new to the convenience store industry. More than 1,800 visitors to the Preview Room averaged 16 product scans per person and 29,890 total product scans.
Sessions Attract Record Numbers
The NACS Show featured four days of general sessions featuring leadership experts and the popular NACS Ideas 2 Go program, a fast-paced video program of emerging concepts that redefine convenience. This was the first year that the event featured four days of general sessions. The Ideas 2 Go video is available for purchase online. The general sessions presentations by NACS President and CEO Henry Armour, 2014-15 NACS Chairman Steve Loehr and 2015-16 NACS Chairman Jack Kofdarali will be posted online in the coming weeks.
The NACS Show also offered 62 educational sessions that drew a total of 12,309 attendees, averaging 198 attendees per session. Reflecting the growing international opportunities offered at the NACS Show, the general sessions were translated into Portuguese, Spanish and Mandarin Chinese, and select educational sessions were translated into Portuguese and Spanish.
At the conclusion of the NACS Show, approximately 42 tons of leftover product from exhibitors was donated to the Three Square Food Bank, which provides food to southern Nevada residents in need.
“The NACS Show is truly the event of the year for the convenience store industry,” said 2015–16 NACS Chairman Jack Kofdarali. “Our industry is full of entrepreneurs and innovators who come to the NACS Show year after year to find that one idea that can change their business, turn a profit and make their customers excited to shop their stores. No other event provides knowledge, education, networking and new products like the NACS Show.”
New NACS Leadership Announced
The NACS Show is also a business meeting. Jack Kofdarali, president of Corona, California-based J&T Management Inc., was named the association’s 2015–16 chairman. Kofdarali also chairs the NACS Executive Committee, which provides strategic direction and financial oversight to the association.
The following NACS retail members serve on the NACS Executive Committee:
Vice Chairman-Treasurer: Peter Tedeschi, President and CEO at Rockland, Massachusetts-based Tedeschi Food Shops
Vice Chairman, Legislative: Joe Sheetz, President and CEO at Altoona, Pennsylvania-based Sheetz Inc.
Vice Chairman, Convention: Wendy Chronister, CEO of Chronister Oil Company (Qik-n-EZ) in Springfield, Illinois
Vice Chairman, Research: Kevin Smartt, CEO of Austin, Texas-based Kwik Chek Food Stores Inc.
Vice Chairman, Member Services: Rahim Budhwani, CEO at Hoover, Alabama-based 6040 LLC
Vice Chairman, International: Frank Gleeson, Managing Director at Dublin, Ireland-based Aramark Ireland
Vice Chairman: Tony Kenney, President at Enon, Ohio-based Speedway LLC
Also on the NACS Executive Committee are:
2014-15 NACS Chairman Steve Loehr, Vice President, Operations Support at La Crosse, Wisconsin-based Kwik Trip Inc.
2013-14 NACS Chairman Brad Call, Vice President of Adventure Culture at North Salt Lake City, Utah-based Maverik Inc.
NACS also named four new members to its Board of Directors:
Lisa Dell’Alba, president and CEO of Square One Markets (Bethlehem, PA)
Dee Dhaliwal, president of Dhaliwal & Associates (Pleasanton, CA)
Bill Kent, president and CEO of The Kent Companies dba Kent Kwik Convenience Stores (Midland, TX)
Victor Paterno, CEO of Philippine Seven Corp. dba 7-Eleven Convenience Store (Mandaluyong, Philippines)
On the supplier side, Kevin Martello, vice president of convenience at Dr Pepper Snapple Group, was named 2015–16 chairman of the NACS Supplier Board. In addition, Brad McGuinness, senior vice president of corporate R&D at Verifone Inc., was named chair-elect and will succeed Martello as 2016–17 chairman.
The 2016 NACS Show will take place October 18–21 in Atlanta at the Georgia World Congress Center. Highlights from the 2015 NACS Show and information on next year’s event can be found at nacsshow.com. NACS has a complete listing of 2016 events posted online.
NACS has held an annual meeting every year since its founding in 1961, but it wasn’t until 1976 that the meeting included a full-scale expo, which was part of the meeting every two or three years. The annual meeting became the annual NACS Show in 1993. The Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA) has held its Fall Meeting as part of the NACS Show since in 1995 and PEI has held its annual meeting as part of the NACS Show since in 2002. Today, the NACS Show is rotated between three cities: Chicago, Las Vegas and Atlanta.
Founded in 1961 as the National Association of Convenience Stores, NACS (nacsonline.com) is the international association for convenience and fuel retailing. The U.S. convenience store industry, with more than 152,700 stores across the country, posted $696.1 billion in total sales in 2014, of which $482.6 billion were motor fuels sales. NACS has 2,100 retail and 1,600 supplier member companies, which do business in nearly 50 countries.