George Little Management Buys Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition
George Little Management continues to expand its events portfolio with the acquisition of the Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition, an e-commerce event, and related assets from Vertical Web Media for undisclosed terms.
The acquisition also included two other events – the Internet Retailer Mobile Marketing & Commerce Forum (MMCF) and Internet Retailer Web Design and Usability Conference (IRWD).
“The IRCE event presents top-quality, forward-looking conference content and continues to see strong growth as to both conference attendees and exhibition participants,” said Charles G. McCurdy, GLM chairman and CEO.
He added, “Because internet retailing and e-commerce are such important growth topics for the retailers and suppliers who attend GLM’s existing shows, this is a natural extension of GLM’s reach and impact within the supplier and retailer community.”
The IRCE sales, marketing and operations team will remain with the events group and operate as an independent division of GLM, according to GLM officials.
“We are extremely excited about this collaboration with GLM,” said Jack Love, Vertical Web Media’s chairman and publisher.
He added, “Our extensive knowledge of and contacts within the e-commerce and online retail space, combined with GLM’s tradeshow expertise and expansive reach within the retail community, lay a strong groundwork for future development of GLM events and Internet Retailer publications around the globe.”
Vertical Web Media will continue to provide conference agenda development, which features 100 sessions, speaker recruitment services and marketing support.
In addition, as part of the deal, Vertical Web Media will retain all of its media properties, including its Internet Retailer Magazine, news and informational web sites, e-mail newsletters and research databases and directories.
IRCE was launched in 2005 and quickly became one of the fastest-growing trade shows in the United States.
The event now attracts approximately 600 exhibitors and 9,000 attendees. Next year’s event will run June 4-7 at Chicago’s McCormick Place.
“There is a high degree of fragmentation in the e-commerce space, with both established and new service providers competing for retailers’ business,” McCurdy said.
He added, “We know from our research that retailers and suppliers whom GLM supports are in a high-adoption phase of online marketing and e-commerce capabilities. IRCE gives us the ability to embed access to credible e-commerce content and suppliers into our existing shows, above and beyond IRCE’s strong base of participants and growth prospects.”
In addition, GLM plans to collocate e-commerce content and resources drawn from IRCE’s network with many of its existing shows beginning next year, according to GLM officials, as well as, possibly expand IRCE-related events in the U.S., Europe and Asia.
This latest acquisition adds to GLM’s retail portfolio that includes the biennial New York International Gift Fair, Surf Expo and The Stationary Show.