A Message to Our Valued Customers Regarding IAAPA Expo 2020
August 06, 2020
To our Valued Customers,
The IAAPA Expo in Orlando is the most important annual gathering of amusement industry professionals and enthusiasts and is truly the epicenter of attractions innovation and business. In 2019, a record-setting 42,000 attendees including CEOs, global leaders, visionary designers, sales people, and technical experts gathered to conduct business, educate, and network at the industry’s gold standard conference and trade show. The 2019 show was a confirmation of the strength of the attractions industry which this past year set all-time records globally for attendance. Business had never been better.
2020 will not be the same. The companies listed below represent well over 100 years of continuous exhibiting at the IAAPA Expo. We are competitors, yet we work together closely to ensure amusement ride safety. We put our heart and soul into this industry with the like goal of creating lifetime memories for millions of people around the globe. And we all look forward to the opportunity each year to gather in Orlando and to be with colleagues and friends from nearly every country in the globe. There are no better words to describe the show environment than “one big family”. With that in mind, we are deeply saddened to share the news with you that we will not be exhibiting at the 2020 IAAPA Expo. We know this news will come as a great disappointment to many of you, and we have made this hard decision with great angst and with significant consideration of several factors.
First, the industry is hurting on all levels. Even with a global effort lead by IAAPA to establish very safe facility operations, our guests have not come back to the parks in the numbers for which we had all hoped. As suppliers to the industry, we know that successful business for us requires successful business for our valued clients. We get it. We understand there is a right time to sell and this is not the right time. Parks and attractions need to focus all their attention on keeping their facilities healthy and well-maintained so they can open strong in 2021. We are here to help you in any way possible, whether it be service or technical support and we will be here when the time is right to talk about new innovative attractions.
Additionally, and understandably, the ability to travel from both a global and a domestic standpoint has been so greatly diminished to the point it is impractical. Each day the news brings additional quarantines and restrictions. Flying from around the globe to Florida is almost impossible, and even in the US with its myriad of quarantine rules it would presently require 28 days of quarantine to visit the show from New York. Again, impractical.
And finally, and most importantly, we need to prioritize the health of our employees who have dedicated themselves to making our companies successful and who are what make visiting our booths so great and so welcoming. We understand all the precautions that are being taken for the IAAPA Expo, and we are grateful for that significant effort. There is indeed hope for the near future with rapid global achievements in the medical field. But for this show, with just over three months to go, the clock has run out.
We have each reached out to our valued clients around the globe and also here in the United States. The message has been the same. For all the reasons above, “we can’t come” is what we are being told. We understand and respect the situation and for the same reasons we will not be at the show either. We will dearly miss you.
The show is a major investment and we have already spent significantly on the show; funds that can never be recovered. We will use the savings from not exhibiting to maintain our company’s operations in order to be ready when you are. In addition, our industry is known for giving and we are all making some generous donations with part of our savings.
We will be giving to:
- Give Kids The World to help make up for the annual IAAPA Expo Harley Davidson fundraiser. https://www.gktw.org/
- Doctors Without Borders in recognition that we are indeed a global industry that positively impacts people arounds the world. https://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/
- Heart of Florida United Way because we care deeply about the people of Orlando, the home of IAAPA and the IAAPA Expo. https://www.hfuw.org/
We encourage everyone who reads this to also consider contributing to one of more of these organizations, even if the amount is small.
We work in an industry that is extremely resilient. Through wars, through recessions, and yes, even through pandemics, our industry has survived. People have a basic need to smile, to have fun. And in tough times, amusement parks are a place where families can enjoy themselves.
The show must go on and will go on! Just not this year.
We will see you again in 2021. And yes, we will once again smile.
Thank you for your understanding.