|With help from a giant smart card, Ed Several of ISC Events announces the official opening of the ISC West show floor.|
A recorded intro from Michael Buffer. A crowded stage. A marching band. An American Legion color guard. A great rendition of “The Star Spangled Banner.” A giant smart card. And, of course, the usual confetti canons. Those were the most memorable images from yesterday morning’s official ISC West Grand Opening ceremony.
The ceremony, sponsored by Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies, was noticeably larger than last year’s. That seems fitting for a show that features 299,000 square feet of floor space, 1,003 booths and a 10 percent increase in attendee preregistration over last year — making this year’s show the second-largest ISC West ever, according to Reed Exhibitions.
Once ISC West’s Ed Several, SIA’s Don Erickson and Jay Hauhn, and Ingersoll Rand Security Technologies’’ John Conover finished speaking, it was time for the official opening. Brandishing a giant Ingersoll Rand aptiQ smart card, two IR customers “swiped” that card, and ISC West 2013 opened with a bang — and not just the bang of the confetti canons that quickly covered attendees inside the main entrance.
The floodgates opened and attendees poured onto the show floor, fanning out in search of the companies and technologies they came to see. Within minutes, the show floor’s aisles were packed, exhibitor booths were filled with people and conversations, and registration desks were nearly engulfed by people clamoring to get onto the show floor. And, most importantly of all, business was being done. The easier-to-navigate show floor helped keep people moving and avoid the traffic jams that can — at any trade show or other place where thousands of people gather — make it challenging to get where you want to go.
The heavy foot traffic continued right up until the show floor closed at 5 p.m., when attendees and exhibitors alike filed back out to take in some of the evening’s events — and plan their strategy for today.
Based on the sheer size of the show, the next two days look to be just as busy, as thousands of attendees continue to make their way through the show floor to talk with product experts, view demonstrations of products and technologies, take advantage of the learning opportunities of the SIA Education @ ISC program, and, in general, take advantage of the new information and networking opportunities they can only get at ISC West.