Networking is not about just connecting people. It’s about connecting people with people, people with ideas, and people with opportunities. Michele Jennae, author of The Connectworker Shared success This year’s IFAI Expo is shaping up to be an exceptionally dynamic show, as we work to keep pace with the lively and growing industrial textile industry and the almost unlimited range of markets it serves. For 98 years, the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has brought this event to thousands of participants in an industry that more and more combines tradition and technology, bringing together demand and supply. Expo brings together major decision makers, industry experts and educators, students, state-of-the-art exhibits, business managers ready for new partners, new products, new markets and new ideas to put into play year-round.
With more than 800 exhibitors to learn from during this year’s co-located show with IFAI’s GeoDallas and CAMX, the annual expo for the composites industry, there will be even more materials, resources and opportunities at hand to help your business succeed throughout the year—and contribute to the long-term future of this industry. Turn to page 49 in this issue for a preview of this year’s show.
As you plan the details of your trip to Dallas, keep in mind that while IFAI Expo consists of three active show floor days, Monday’s Pre-Expo Conference will offer a total of 43 hours of education from which to pick and choose the sessions that will serve you best, from sewing, shade structures and fiber testing to electronic fabrics, digitized manufacturing and social media strategies. The sessions are designed to support your existing business activity—no matter where you are in the supply chain—and inspire you with ideas and information for future growth as well. There will also be five areas of education on the show floor: shade technologies, specialty fabrics, advanced textiles, material testings, and e-textiles workshops and discussions. To kick-start your day, we’ve added an inspiring keynote from Mark Scharenbroich on Tuesday morning: Nice Bike—Making Connections That Move People.
IFAI is a trade association designed to support companies in the specialty fabrics industry, but we know that it is the people, from management to customer service, who drive those companies, and ultimately this industry, forward. Throughout the show there are events, seminars, special meetings and show floor activities all designed to help meet your needs as an individual, and a professional.
This year’s IFAI HUB (Booth 1143) is set up as a connection place for you to find solutions to all your industry problems whenever they arise during the year. We know trade shows provide a flood of information, so make sure you take your breaks: stop by the HUB to get a cookie, talk to staff members, buttonhole an editor and make sure you’ve got all the resources available to help you continue your IFAI experience throughout the year.
I look forward to seeing you in Dallas.