Stone Column

Stone Column: Fueling the fire

February 2, 2004
/ Print / Reprints /
/ Text Size+
Late last year, I attended two industry trade shows within a span of three weeks - the International Tile & Stone Show (ITSS) in Las Vegas, NV, and StonExpo in Atlanta, GA. And while I appreciate the face-to-face meetings with members of the stone industry, I have to admit that I wondered how many faces I would actually see at these events - particularly with the holidays rapidly approaching. To my pleasant surprise, both of these shows fared quite admirably.

The first stop of my “Holiday Season Trade Show Tour” was in Las Vegas for ITSS. This show debuted in 2002 and was welcomed by many on the West Coast, but attendance was less than spectacular at that time. Even so, organizers and exhibitors remained undaunted, as they keenly pointed out that you cannot judge a trade show after its first edition. They had high expectations for the 2003 edition.

As it turns out, the optimists were correct. The 2003 version of ITSS was well attended, and there was brisk activity on the show floor throughout much of the event. Exhibitors hailed the quality of attendance, and many proudly told me that they wrote a solid amount of business on the show floor.

Upon my brief return to the office between ITSS and StonExpo, I wondered how the success of the Las Vegas show would affect the Atlanta show. Would a successful ITSS showing take away from StonExpo's potential visitors? Would we now see a quiet show in Atlanta?

This question was answered for me on the very first day of StonExpo. The show floor was as busy as ever, and organizers of the event report that the show received its highest level of attendee and exhibitor participation ever. Again, exhibitors were pleased with the quality of attendance on the show floor, and companies saw their participation at StonExpo translate into actual sales. Educational opportunities were also abound, with high-quality seminars and programs in collaboration with the Marble Institute of America.

So what does all of this mean? One theory is that growth in the American stone industry - particularly among fabricators - has been so solid over the past few years that there is room for multiple stone-related trade shows in the U.S. To be certain, the demand for knowledge and information among stone professionals in the U.S. market is at an all-time high. New stone fabricators are being established every day, and they are eager to expand their understanding of the industry. These shows also effectively serve well-established fabricators, as they are sources of new technology, methods and stone materials in the marketplace.

And while we have all heard the grumblings that there are “too many trade shows out there,” there is also something to be gained from each of these shows. I am not saying that every member of the industry needs to attend every trade show, but participation at these events helps the industry continue to grow.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Stone World 

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

November 2013 Stone Products Gallery

Take a look at some of the latest stone industry products.


Stone World Magazine

April 2014 stone world cover

2014 April

In this month's issue of Stone World, check out an extensive preview of Coverings 2014, which will be celebrating its 25th anniversary in April. Also learn more about various types of limestone that were used to build private residences.

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Contemporary Stone & Tile Design Magazine


2014 Spring

This issue of Contemporary Stone & Tile Design includes our annual focus on Kitchen and Bath design

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Training Program

How formal is your training program for new employees?
View Results Poll Archive

The Stone World Store

How to Polish & Restore Marble Flooring

This video will show you step-by-step how to resurface and polish marble flooring from grinding and removing lippage and scratches to achieving a highly reflective polish.

More Products

Italian Trade Commission Coverings exhibitor preview

Italian Trade Commission logo 2

The Italian Trade Commission is presenting a large group of the most innovative and internationally renowned Italian suppliers of dimensional natural stones. We hope your busy schedule will allow you to join us for a “genuine” espresso in booth N. 4045 and explore the exciting Italian natural stone resources offered by our exhibitors. Check out Italian stone producers exhibiting at Coverings 2014 here!


Stone Industry Education

stone industry educationStone Industry Education is sponsored by Stone World Magazine and Marble Institute of America. The SIE events will help you: strengthen your skills, build your business, and  increase profit in your shop.  Check out to register for upcoming fabricator and installer seminars.


facebook logo Twitter  YouTube