Event Summary - International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE)
EDCUtah was in for a real treat at this year’s International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE) held at the Expo Hall in Las Vegas, Nevada. With over 23,000 baking professionals and 800 exhibitors, it is the largest event for the grain-based food industry. “It’s where new products were launched, great ideas were born and creativity and innovation took center stage” (ibie2016). For EDCUtah, attending this event was an opportunity to generate potential projects and support some EDCUtah members who were interested in attending the show. The Utah booth was coordinated in partnership with Steve Bogden, a managing broker with Coldwell Banker Commercial Advisors. Bogden brought in Big-D and EDCUtah brought in the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, to round out the Utah booth.
Various companies at the event packed EDCUtah’s new booth with questions about expansion opportunities and were able to get their answers all in one place. “Having several entities from the public and private sector in the booth was a huge benefit,” says Mike Flynn, Chief Marketing Officer at EDCUtah, “People walk around these shows with different problems they’re trying to solve -- it might be real estate related, construction related, or more general in nature. Having experts from multiple disciplines as part of the booth increases our chances of getting potential clients to stop by and engage.” EDCUtah left the IBIE event in Las Vegas with a dozen leads and some potential projects. The event was an incredible opportunity for EDCUtah to promote the manufacturing and food processing industries in Utah.
“Utah is very well positioned to be a food production hub going forward. Our central geography in the west allows a company to operate out of a facility in Utah, and service a majority of the western US,” Flynn states, “Our proximity to California is also beneficial, as a company can be close to those huge markets, without having to do business in that economy. Future increases to minimum wage laws, utility costs and regulation have a great number of California-based manufacturers looking at automation, or production facilities outside of the state.”
EDCUtah plans to return to the Baking Exposition event when it’s held again in 2019. Although it is difficult to say what the marketing strategy will look like in 2019, overall it was a success in driving awareness of the state and generating projects. Flynn offers that “Anytime we can work with our partners - in this case CBC Advisors, Big-D Construction and GOED - it’s something we want to take advantage of. We’ll look for more opportunities to target the food production business, and IBIE 2019 will definitely be a venue we consider."