Record Attendance at The Atlanta Shoe Market

The Atlanta Shoe Market (TASM) once again witnessed record increases
in both exhibitor and retailer attendance during its February
edition. Specifically, increases of 15.3 percent in retailer pre-
registration, 13.1 percent in exhibition space and 8 percent in
attending exhibitor personnel were reported. Retailers and exhibitors
came from 33 states and there was also an increase in Caribbean
attendance.

“The show has simply become too important to miss,” notes George
Mustafa, sales manager for Trimfoot Company, who was exhibiting for
his 24th consecutive year.

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The Atlanta Shoe Market (TASM) once again witnessed record increases
in both exhibitor and retailer attendance during its February
edition. Specifically, increases of 15.3 percent in retailer pre-
registration, 13.1 percent in exhibition space and 8 percent in
attending exhibitor personnel were reported. Retailers and exhibitors
came from 33 states and there was also an increase in Caribbean
attendance.

“The show has simply become too important to miss,” notes George
Mustafa, sales manager for Trimfoot Company, who was exhibiting for
his 24th consecutive year. “It is evident in the participation of the
major [retailers] from all across the country.”

Trimfoot was one of 75 children’s shoes vendors in a new section
dubbed, “The Kids Shoe Box.” The new area in the ballroom of the
Galleria Renaissance Hotel was well-received. “The retailers have had
very positive comments on the idea of gathering all the children’s
lines in one area,” Mustafa says. “It is one more way the show has
been able to make it easier for them to do business.”

“I was very happy with the success of the show,” says Laura Conwell-
O’Brien, show manager and executive director of Southeastern Shoe
Travelers Association (SEST). “We feel that part of the success of
the show is the existing facility; the other part is that we are a
non-profit, industry association that has the needs and wants of
their vendors and retailers first and foremost in mind.” Conwell-
O’Brien adds, “It’s cost effective for everyone to attend and we try
and give back to all the attendees.”

Continuing to build on its reputation as a “buying show,” TASM
received high marks for convenience and affordability—exhibit space
at a fraction of the cost of other shows and hotel rates in the $200-
a-night range. “This is about industry productivity not our
profitability,” notes Conwell-O’Brien, adding that for now TASM plans
to stay in its current location. She notes that additional exhibitors
(currently the show has a waiting list) will be accommodated with the
addition of 25,000 square feet of new space for the next show (Aug.
13-15). The space is being dubbed “The Fashion Collection,” and will
feature women’s better and salon lines. “ I have additional plans
that could add accommodate 500 more booths in our current location,”
Conwell-O’Brien notes. “We will be able to accommodate a lot more
companies in the current location—at least for now.”

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