In June, unions in Chicago, Illinois struck a deal making it easier for trade shows to come to the Windy City. Since then, industry professionals knew they'd see an increase in expos and conventions. Now, months later, it appears to be already making a difference.
Attendance at Chicago's most popular trade fair, according to the Chicago Tribune, is up 4.4 percent from 2010. "The biennial International Manufacturing Technology Show, historically the city's largest trade show, is seeing a boost in attendance as it opened at McCormick Place Monday morning," the newspaper reports.
By Saturday, the last day of the event, attendance could break 100,000. Participation hasn't been that high since 1996.
According to the convention website, "Manufacturing industry professionals from all over the world attend IMTS to see more than 15,000 new machine tools, controls, computers, software, components, systems and processes that can improve their efficiency." Companies show off their products and services and likely handout technology trade show promos, as well.
Peter Eelman, an executive at the Association for Manufacturing Technology, the International Manufacturing Technology Show's sponsor, told the Chicago Tribune that the growth can at least in part be attributed to improvement in the manufacturing sector. "...We feel like there is pent-up demand that maybe is even waiting for this show to see what's new," Eelman said.