Levin Consulting will host its inaugural ECRM/Levin Consulting PC & CE Retail Forum in late June.
The event will run June 24-26 at the Hyatt Regency in Jacksonville, Fla., said Bob Marcantonio, Levin's president. Unlike other shows designed to bring retailers and vendors together, the PC & CE Retail Forum will target only four product categories, and it will be highly focused on the business at hand, he said. The Levin event places the vendors in a hotel suite which the retail buyers are rotated through at 20-minute intervals. Each vendor is guaranteed time with each retailer. Outside of meals and a single presentation by The NPD Group, the event is all business.
"There is no fluff. There are no board rooms, no booths. We want to get them in and get them out," Marcantonio said, adding the event was even trimmed from its original three days down to two at the request of the attendees.
The categories covered at this show will be iPod/MP3 accessories, PC peripherals and accessories, TV accessories and CE accessories. Only the buyers for these specific categories will attend the show so no time is wasted, Marcantonio said. About 40 to 50 retailers and a similar number of vendors are lined up for the June show, although registration is still open.
Levin is considering holding additional shows catering to different product categories, but no firm plans are yet in place.
The concept of the show came from similar events held by ECRM, a business planning, marketing and event management firm. Levin was impressed with ECRM's proprietary software that helps expedite retailer/vendor meetings. ECRM has conducted hundreds of similar meetings in other fields and Levin felt its format was transferable to the CE category.
Upon signing in to the event each retailer receives a notebook computer preloaded with all the details of the products they will see plus software that helps complete transactions post-show, Marcantonio said.
Any company interested in attending can contact Bob Marcantonio at Levin.