The two-day Almo Mid-Atlantic Expo, running May 4 and 5 at Atlantic City, N.J.’s Harrah’s Resort, is the inaugural kickoff of a four-venue series of regional shows for the distributor.
More than 375 dealers were expected at this Expo, which is attracting regional and national dealers from Virginia up through New England to see the wares of 60 vendors. Other Almo Expos are set for St. Louis in July, and for Ohio and Minnesota in August.
But it’s much more than just a selling show, said Warren Chaiken, Almo president and COO. “Our goal here is not necessarily to write a lot of business but to educate our customers and expose them to new technologies —and to let them ask questions of the vendors,” said Chaiken.
“We’re using the show to introduce dealers to 3D who haven’t been exposed to it as yet,” Chaiken said. “We’re just getting our initial allocations, and so this is a good opportunity to give them a first chance to understand and experience it. On the appliance side, Frigidaire has revamped their entire lineup; it’s been modernized and freshened with many added features – so our dealers can see it and get trained on it here. And the Samsung appliance line has more SKUs than ever, so we want to expose dealers to those products, too.”
That exposure to the latest technologies is one of the biggest benefits to attendance cited by Charmaine and Thomas Bean, who sell both consumer electronics and appliances at Olean, N.Y.-based Besecker and Coss. They carry Panasonic and Samsung – both of whom offered dealers here the chance to experience their 3D TV and Blu-ray solutions – and were thrilled about the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of 3D so they could bring back that information and an account of their firsthand experience to inquiring customers.