The Inspired Home Show 2024, to be held next March in Chicago, will undergo several changes to Show length and layout.
After carefully considering feedback received from two industry-wide surveys and four special committees made up of both exhibitors and retailers, the IHA Board of Directors has decided to reduce the overall length and to optimise the Show layout to create the most vibrant, productive and efficient trade show experience possible for the industry.
The Show will now open on Sunday March 17 and close on Tuesday March 19. The majority of exhibitors and retailers indicated on recent surveys and in discussions that three full days at the Show is sufficient with business being more concentrated over that timeframe, said Derek Miller, IHA president & CEO. “Making the move from four days to three full days will not only make the Show more productive and dynamic but will also reduce costs for both the exhibitor and retail audiences, something frequently cited throughout discussions.”
“I’m excited for the changes; it’s great for the industry,” Steve Greenspon, CEO, Honey-Can-Do International and IHA chairman told IHA’s HomePage News. “A three-day Show will help both retailers and exhibitors be/er control their expenses while ge4ng a more fulfilling Show experience. Condensing the Show will make it much more efficient to see all the exhibits and displays.”
Changes to the Show layout include:
- The Wired + Well Expo will move from the Lakeside Centre to the North Hall co-locating with the Clean + Contain Expo to create an active and dynamic destination at the Show. Housing all three of the Show’s primary Expos, which includes Dine + Décor, together in the North and South Halls will bring the industry’s core categories together into a central location that is much easier and more efficient to navigate with quick trips between two halls now being possible.
- The North Hall will be divided into two halves with Wired + Well occupying the right-hand side and Clean + Contain continuing to occupy the left-hand side. Both Expos will be reconfigured with exhibitors being placed in each based-on seniority number. Additional details will be provided to returning and new exhibitors in the coming weeks about this process and schedule.
- The Discover Design Expo will be disbursed with current exhibitors being placed within their appropriate categories. Discover Design was created in 2011 in order to concentrate and highlight design-driven companies that wanted to exhibit in a central location. With design-forward products now being widespread and found throughout the Show, Miller said there is simply no longer a need for this specific area. As with the changes to Wired + Well and Clean + Contain, current exhibitors from Discover Design will be contacted directly regarding the space assignment process.
- The Travel Gear + Luggage category will move into the South Hall to give this new, exciting area room to grow and develop. Additional details about this category’s development will be released in the near future.
- The International Sourcing Expo will return to the Lower North Hall, a location previously occupied by that group of exhibitors in 2019. Exhibitors without branded products and U.S. distribution will be grouped in this area together to create product sourcing opportunities for the industry.
- While the overall size of the Show will not decrease, with these re-location plans the Show will no longer occupy the Lakeside Centre. Exhibits and displays located in the Lakeside Centre Lobby, such as the Smart Home Pavilion and the Inventors Corner, will be relocated later in the year into the North and South Halls.
Reacting to the news, exhibitors Bill Endres president of Select Brands, said: “IHA is listening to what key retailers and exhibitors said about the effec9veness of the Show, and it is doing everything to put on a first-class global Show,” said Endres, president, Select Brands. “Moving (electrics) out of Lakeside is a chance to address changes that will be beneficial to the Show layout and to the retailers. Things change, and you need to adapt.”
Jacob Maurer, CEO Americas at The Cookware Company, added: “Retailers spend a fair amount of time walking the Show. We’re excited about the adjacencies offered to companies like ours that are in multiple categories. Retailers will be able to circle back more efficiently as needed. The Show will be more active, which is a real positive.”