The third edition was the most comprehensive PACK EXPO East yet, welcoming over 6,000 attendees with buying power to a busy Pennsylvania Convention Center filled with successful new features and satisfied exhibitors. Produced by PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, the event, April 16-18, featured 400 exhibiting companies, spanning nearly 100,000 net square feet.
“We are very excited about the future of PACK EXPO East,” says Jim Pittas, president and CEO, PMMI. “We are gaining momentum on this new show with both attendees and exhibitors. Walking the show floor, it was obvious that attendees are talking about the challenges they are facing, and exhibitors are providing them with solutions they are looking for.”
Its prime Philadelphia location placed PACK EXPO East within 200 miles of one-third of U.S. consumer packaged goods companies (CPGs), providing the opportunity for Northeast attendees to exchange ideas with leading packaging suppliers. Attendees and exhibitors alike touted the show’s accessibility as one of the many advantages of the location.
“It is my third year coming to PACK EXPO East, and year after year, it has proven to be worthwhile,” says Sarah Leiterman, packaging engineer, Johnson & Johnson. “[I] connected with suppliers that could provide significant support for current projects and help overcome challenges we are facing. PACK EXPO East is also conveniently located for our team. The regional show makes navigation a bit easier, especially as we seek specific solutions.”
While the regional event offered attendees easy access to the world-class offerings synonymous with the PACK EXPO portfolio of trade shows, exhibitors and attendees relished the quality time the show’s size permitted to gain an understanding of each other’s operations and challenges. Exhibitors were particularly pleased with the high quality of leads they brought in during the show.
“Attendees at PACK EXPO East 2018 knew exactly what they wanted to see or discuss,” says Dana Greenly, packaging manager, ASCO Numatics. “These were real leads with real projects. We are looking forward to PACK EXPO East 2020.”
Ed Fox, director of sales for Fox IV Technologies, echoed these sentiments adding that PACK EXPO East 2018 offered a unique opportunity for extended customer/supplier interaction.
“Most of the visitors we encountered in our booth came with projects in hand as well as time for discussion, which is exciting for an exhibitor,” says Fox. “It allows us to really dig deep with them and tailor a solution that can meet their needs.”
PACK EXPO East featured several firsts, including the debut of The Forum at PACK EXPO, a new educational opportunity that featured sessions on the latest industry trends by the OpX Leadership Network, Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP), Contract Packagers Association (CPA) and PMMI Business Intelligence.
Also for the first time in Philadelphia, attendees experienced the PACK EXPO DRONE DEMO – Packaging for the Last Mile, which allowed crowds to watch drones take off from the top of electric trucks and make deliveries to mock houses. Cameras mounted on the drones showed the unique drone delivery perspective as part of the interactive display.
And the inaugural Packaging & Processing Women’s Leadership Network’s (PPWLN) regional meeting featured an inspirational keynote address, “How to Leverage Your Self-Power from the Inside Out” by Diane Wilhelm, chief engineer advanced manufacturing, Harley-Davidson Motor Company, followed by a professional development workshop.
PACK EXPO East will return to Philadelphia March 3–5, 2020. Next up this Fall, mark your calendars for PACK EXPO International and Healthcare Packaging EXPO 2018 (Oct. 14–17; McCormick Place, Chicago). Expected to be the largest PACK EXPO International and Healthcare Packaging EXPO to date, it will feature 50,000 attendees and 2,500-plus exhibitors over 1.2 million net square feet of exhibit space, making this the largest packaging event in the world in 2018.
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