With some exhibitor booths spanning nearly a city block inside and companies constructing their own two- and three-story headquarters outside, it should come as no surprise that this year’s CONEXPO-CON/AGG shattered attendance and exhibit space records for North American trade shows.

More than 144,600 industry professionals from around the world attended CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2008 and IFPE 2008 during its five-day run March 11-15, at the Las Vegas Convention Center. CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2008 alone covered more than 2.28 million net sq ft of exhibits, with 2,182 exhibitors — making it 21 percent bigger than the last show held in 2005, according to the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM).

A record number of international industry professionals visited the shows — more than 28,000, which is more than 19 percent of total attendance and represents more than 30 percent growth compared to the last edition of the shows. International attendance increased by more than 50 percent from the Latin America and Caribbean marketplaces and doubled from China, India and Turkey. There were also significant increases from Canada, Australia, Russia and the Middle East.

International visitors to the shows hailed from more than 130 non-U.S. countries. There were more than 60 official international customer delegations organized by the U.S. Department of Commerce, as well as in-country trade associations and related groups.

The show floor included a record number of 14 international exhibit pavilions highlighting products and services developed outside the United States with 10, from Brazil, Canada, China, Finland, Germany, Italy, Korea, Spain, Turkey and the United Kingdom and IFPE 2008 with four, from China, Italy, Spain and Taiwan.    

CONEXPO-CON/AGG 2008 featured a new Safety Zone of exhibits and demonstrations from industry and government groups, including the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Mine Safety and Health Administration, National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health and the Aerial Work Platform Training/International Powered Access Federation.

The triennial shows will return March 22-26, 2011, at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

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