By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
GRAPEVINE, TEXAS — All signs point to a positive year for the annual KnowledgeFest car electronics trade show, put on by the Mobile Electronics Retailers Association (MERA).
At press time, the number of exhibitors was more than 50, according to Chris Cook, MERA president. This is down slightly from the 2012 show, but the number of attendees is still expected to be more than 1,000. Retailer attendance registrations are up around 35 percent vs. this time last year, Cook told TWICE.
The show, which carries the theme of “The Road To Success,” will be held Aug. 17-20 at the Gaylord Texan Hotel & Convention Center. It will kick off with a town hall-style meeting and state of the industry on Saturday, Aug. 20, that will be open to the audience and feature microphones in the aisles to take questions, said Cook.
The show will have a variety of training events and networking opportunities available for attendees. There will be more than 40 hours of education workshops, Cook said, as well as more than 40 manufacturer trainings. There are also close to 40 speakers scheduled for the overall event.
A networking and awards event will be held on Aug. 19 at 8 p.m. at the Glass Cactus on Lake Grapevine.
Exhibitors at the show will include Aamp of America, Rockford Fosgate, DEI, Sony, Wet Sounds, JBL, Kicker, Metra, Crimestopper, Scosche, Avidworx and AutoPage, among others.
Some of the first-time exhibitors include PHD Audiophiles Sound Systems, Reikken, Bluetooth Keyless, Varad and UltraLED.
Registration for KnowledgeFest is $149 for the first attendee, with $99 for each additional attendee. MERA members receive the first attendee free.
Highlights of the show will include the following:
Scosche Industries will show off its newest line of climate-control installation kits and a new Harley kit. This will be the company’s first motorcycle kit.
Crimestopper will display more than 40 SKUs during the show, all of which have just starting shipping, a company spokesman told TWICE. The SKUs, which initially debuted during International CES in January, will include 13 backup cameras, seven parking-assistant devices, and 13 security and remote-start devices, among others.
Rockford Fosgate will hold product training on Aug. 18, from 6:15 p.m. to 7:15 p.m., and on Aug. 19 from 5:15 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.
Del Ellis Training International will hold two sales strategy sessions. The Qualifying to Close the Sale course will be Sunday, Aug. 18, at 9:30 a.m., and the Advanced Selling Techniques course will be held Monday, Aug. 19, at 9:30 a.m.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.