At the conclusion of the AED’s 88th Annual Meeting & CONDEX, held in Las Vegas Jan. 16 to 18, the enthusiasm and optimism for the year ahead was palpable. This year’s show was one of the highest attended on record.
Total registrations climbed 17 percent from last year’s convention, bringing the number of attendees up to 3,000. Distributor, manufacturer and service firm attendees from the United States, Canada and abroad met to discuss the issues and opportunities facing the industry. The CONDEX trade show was the second largest in AED history.
“The 2007 Annual Meeting surpassed last year in every category we measure,” Toby Mack, president of AED, said. “Registrations were up sharply, on-site registrations were at an all-time high, and CONDEX exhibitors increased.”
Some of the high points of this year’s event were a keynote speech by economist, actor and novelist Ben Stein and a speech from Author John R. Powers. One of AED’s highest-rated speakers of all time, Ken Schmidt, was again on hand to relay his inspirational message of helping take Harley-Davidson from the brink of bankruptcy and shaping it into the thriving global company it is today.
The AED University Managers Conference was again held in conjunction with AED’s Annual Meeting. This two-day event provided specialized education for sales, rental, parts and service managers. Industry experts such as Ron Slee, Walter McDonald, Todd Youngblood and Dan Kaplan presented the most up-to-date information to standing-room-only sessions. Managers who attended the AED University Manager’s Conference also earned an AED Management Essentials Certificate and are eligible to earn Continuing Education Units, which are applicable toward the AED Certification Programs.
Plans are under way for the 2008 Annual Meeting & CONDEX in Chicago, Jan. 10 to 12, 2008.