Automate 2013 Breaks All-time High Attendance Record in Chicago

February 18, 2013

Shows posting record attendance numbers seem to be more and more commonplace these days, with the latest one being the biennial Automate 2013, which was collocated with Material Handling Association’s ProMat 2013 and held Jan. 21-24 at Chicago’s McCormick Place.

Automate 2013 was attended by a record 10,975 attendees from across the United States and 55 countries.

“Automate 2013 exceeded all of our expectations,” said Jeff Burnstein, president of the Association for Advancing Automation, the primary sponsor of Automate 2013.

He added, “All of our numbers were up sharply, including total exhibitors (17-plus percent), show attendees (62-plus percent) and conference participants (10-plus percent). Our post-show survey indicates that Automate is becoming the primary trade show in the field for many people, as about 50 percent of Automate attendees do not attend any other automation related trade shows.”

Automate is organized by the Association for Advancing Automation, the not-for-profit umbrella corporation of the Robotic Industries Association (RIA), AIA - Advancing Vision + Imaging and the Motion Control Association (MCA).

Exhibitors also were pleased with the busy showfloor.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with Automate 2013,” said Joseph Cyrek, vice president at Recognition Robotics, Inc.

He added, “The attendee traffic was fantastic. We generated many solid leads with potential users, some of whom were already asking for quotes to move forward with our technology. This has been a great show; everyone seemed really fired up about the industry. We will definitely come back for Automate 2015 with an even bigger presence.”

There also was a lot of press coverage at the show from mainstream media outlets, such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Barron’s, with the coverage focused mainly on how using automation technologies displayed at the show can help save and create jobs.

Besides the showfloor, more than 75 industry experts from around the world gave presentations at the conference, including keynote speakers Steve Forbes, chairman and editor-in-chief of Forbes Media, and Henrik Christensen, director of Robotics at Georgia Institute of Technology.

“Many of the sessions were geared to small- and medium-sized companies who are new users or considering using robotics, vision, motion control, and other automation technologies,” Burnstein said.

He added, “One of the featured sessions highlighted small company executives who have successfully automated in order to become stronger global competitors. These executives provided real-world examples of companies who would have had to either go out of business or send manufacturing offshore but instead succeeded by automating.”

The next Automate Show and Conference will be held March 23-25, 2015, in Chicago.

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