Newton, MA – True to its 25-year record of being the best place to introduce new products, METALCON 2015 drew eager buyers to see all the new offerings from more than 260 exhibiting companies.
“Celebrating METALCON’s 25th Anniversary in Tampa gave us a great setting to celebrate the accomplishments within our industry. Best of all, the exhibiting companies had great responses from attendees. These companies expressed their satisfaction with this year’s show by signing up for next year. We already have 55,000 square feet of space committed for 2016 in Baltimore. This has been a great location for us so we’re looking forward to a repeat of our very successful 2008 event held at the Baltimore Convention Center,” noted METALCON Show Director Claire Kilcoyne.
METALCON is the metal construction industry’s largest international tradeshow and conference for metal construction products, technologies and solutions. The 25th annual event took place October 14-16 at the Tampa Convention Center in Tampa, FL.
Quality and consistency of attendees were bywords for many exhibitors at the 2015 show, such as Bo Newman, Business Development Manager for D.I. Roof Seamers, Corinth MS, who said, “METALCON has always been a top trade show for us and this year was no exception. Our booth was filled with visitors throughout the show. The contacts we made were not only record breaking in number, but they were clearly buyers. The vast majority of them are all about business – seriously intent on putting our products and services to work for them.”
He added, “In addition to our own marketing efforts, we took full advantage of METALCON’s great marketing tools. We participated in the MCA Roofing Championship Games as well as the ‘Association at Work for You’ area. This added exposure was key in the overwhelming response to our new products – particularly the new D.I. Curver 1000 and Cap Bender. These machines are used to field form a radius on common snap-lock panels with narrow batten caps. We look forward to next year’s METALCON where we will once again present the latest innovations in panel seaming technology.”
Larger equipment suppliers such as AXYZ Automation also drew crowds. “There was a lot of interest in our PanelBuilder CNC Router featuring our new software and print head. We saw very strong prospects and generated a lot of business here. METALCON has always been successful for us because many of our suppliers are here and our customers, installers of wall cladding (ACM), are also in abundance at METALCON. Every year this is a good source of business for us. The new PANELBUILDER 16 is the latest combined router and software solution in our company’s CNC router systems for panel fabrication,” said Greg Jenkins, Vice President of Sales, AXYZ Automation, Inc., Burlington, Ontario, Canada.
New metal panel systems were also a big hit. Ken Gieseke, Vice President, Marketing, McElroy Metal, Bossier City, LA, commented, “Traffic to our booth was consistently good. Our new product, the 138T Shingle Recover System, was a real draw. Our target is the retrofit arena and our product was developed based on studies of the ASV concept. We did a lot of electronic promotion through METALCON’s offerings as well as industry publications.”
Lee Ann M. Slattery, Sales Support Manager, ATAS International Inc., Allentown, PA, echoed his comments. “ATAS International had many visitors who were interested in our new Isoleren insulated metal panels. It was a good event at which to announce this new product offering. Participating in the Learning Zones helped ATAS educate contractors on installation details related to flashing. ATAS has participated as an exhibitor at METALCON for the past 25 years. It is where we establish new relationships and meet with customers and suppliers that we have worked with for many years, and we look forward to future shows,” she said.
For some companies, such as software supplier AppliCad, METALCON is primarily an educational opportunity. “Our customer base has access to all kinds of information so their perception is that they don’t need trade shows to make a decision. The U.S. market is critical for us and we feel our role is to educate roofers through these shows. This is the only way to do it and this show was better than I expected. So we’ll be back next year,” said Ray Smith, Managing Director of AppliCad, headquartered in Melbourne, Australia. AppliCad has developed software for simplified roof modelling in 3D for roofing and cladding estimating throughout the Americas, Africa, Middle East, Asia and Europe.
Bill Zayas, Senior Account Executive, SnoGem, McHenry, IL also had a rewarding experience in educating prospects and showing them new products. “We previewed our Universal Composite Panel System. There’s no better venue than METALCON to introduce this product. Plus, being right by the MCA Roofing Games helped draw the right people to our booth. In an area like Tampa, we were promoting the benefit of our products in solar installations. In fact we had a visitor from Sri Lanka who was interested in standing seam roofing and wanted to know about our clips.” The design of the Universal Composite Panel System (UCPS) 1000 Series incorporates a concealed drainage system and a concealed fastener design.
Kristin Peregoy, Marketing Manager, New Tech Machinery, Denver, CO said her company celebrated industry accomplishments this year and is looking forward to doing so next year. “To help mark METALCON’s 25th anniversary, New Tech Machinery and S-5! co-hosted a kick-off party that had a great turn out. Everyone involved in the show had a part in growing the industry in the last 25 years and by partnering together who knows how big it could get. New Tech Machinery has been attending METALCON for many years and it has consistently been our biggest show. Next year is also New Tech Machinery’s 25th anniversary so we’re making great plans for our celebration at METALCON.”
Before the exhibits opened on the first day, the distinctive rumble of a Harley-Davidson motorcycle started the keynote presentation as Clyde Fessler, former Vice President of Business Development for Harley-Davidson Motor Company, rode a Harley into the ballroom, drawing a rousing applause from the audience.