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KBIS to Co-Locate with International Builders Show

Hil Anderson
, Senior Editor
January 22, 2013
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Las Vegas, NV – Nielsen’s annual Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) will co-locate with the International Builders Show (IBS) in Las Vegas beginning in 2014, in a move aimed at reinvigorating an industry hit hard by the economy. The announcement was made this morning at the IBS. The January time frame in Las Vegas is being developed into Design and Construction Week, during which the Hanley Wood exhibitions SURFACES and StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas will also take place beginning in 2015. 

The KBIS, which is managed by Nielsen Expositions on behalf of the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), will take place this year April 19-21 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans and then share quarters with the IBS at the Las Vegas Convention Center February 4-6, 2014.

“This new format allows exhibitors to reach a full range of design and construction professionals,” said Barry Rutenberg, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders. “For attendees, it means access to two expansive trade shows and hundreds of additional suppliers.”

The pact covers two years during which the IBS and KBIS will operate as separate shows and will be held in different halls of the convention center in mid-January. The January time frame in Las Vegas is being developed into Design and Construction Week, during which the Hanley-Wood exhibitions SURFACES and StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas will also take place beginning in 2015. Attendees will be able to attend all three shows in the same week.

Aligning the KBIS with the IBS will give kitchen-and-bath specialists a better look at the many moving parts involved in their projects, including flooring, windows and mechanical systems. The homebuilders will be able to look over a wider range of products for what are arguably two of the most important rooms in any residence.

“The consumers are the common ground between NAHB and NKBA,” Rutenberg said. “Co-locating our shows and educational conferences brings together every segment of the industry in order to advance our collective expertise in serving homeowners.”

Numbers Game

The 2012 KBIS show included 250,000 net square feet of exhibit space, a (10.7)% decline compared to the 2011 edition in Las Vegas, according to the Trade Show Executive (TSE) Dashboard of Monthly Trade Show Statistics. The 2011 show covered 280,000 nsf, which placed it No. 63 on the TSE Gold 100. Attendance in 2012 was up 7.6% to 21,896; however the exhibitor count declined (6.5)% to 550.

The recent recession, which hit the housing market hard, no doubt took a toll on exhibiting companies tied to the construction industry.  However, KBIS management had been bullish and felt a pickup in the remodeling of existing homes and a surge in new interior design concepts would tide the industry through. “KBIS 2012 showed that our industry is reinventing itself and utilizing insights from the marketplace to develop new products and designs that change how we interact in both the kitchen and bath,” Nielsen’s Jim Scott, managing director of KBIS, said at the time.

The IBS, which was ranked 30th on the Gold 100, opened today in Las Vegas. The National Association of Home Builders used the occasion to announce that remodeling was indeed on the upswing nationwide, and slow, but steady growth, was anticipated through 2013.

The IBS took its lumps as well in recent years as construction in the U.S. remained in a frustrating funk. Like the KBIS, the IBS reported a nice 8.9% increase in attendance in 2012 with 51,455 visitors, but also lost ground in exhibitors and exhibit space. Both metrics slid (15.2)%, with exhibit space down to a still-respectable 414,142 nsf, which again ranked it among the largest construction industry trade shows in the U.S.

The largest IBS was held in 2008 when the show sprawled across 1,039,624 nsf and drew 92,089 attendees. The previous year, the KBIS hit a record 609,770 nsf.

Reach Jim Scott at (630) 240-9326 or jim.scott@nielsen.com

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