This Just In

International CES Selects Freeman as Its New General Service Contractor

DANICA TORMOHLEN, EDITOR-AT-LARGE

Arlington, VA – After more than 20 years of partnering with Global Experience Specialists (GES), the International CES, the largest annual trade show in the U.S.,has selected Freeman as its general services contractor beginning in 2014. CES and Freeman will be finalizing their agreement in the next 30 days.

“GES and Freeman both submitted impressive and innovative proposals that offered more value, enhanced services and improved customer service for our show and our customers,” said Karen Chupka, senior vice president for events and business strategy with the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), the producer of CES. “In the end, after a careful and thorough review process, we selected Freeman because we believe they will provide a fresh eye and approach that will greatly benefit our show and our customers as we plan for the 2014 International CES.”

“We are humbled that CEA has selected Freeman and grateful for the opportunity,” said Joe Popolo, CEO, Freeman.  “We look forward to working with the CEA team to help take an already incredibly successful CES to the next level.”

GES President Steve Moster said GES is proud of the service it provided to CEA to help make the International CES a highly successful event.  “For the 2013 International CES, we met or exceeded the expectations of a record level of participating exhibitors,” he said. “While we are disappointed by CEA’s decision, we wish them continued success and we look forward to earning their business in the future.”

The International CES is the largest annual trade show in the U.S., but ranked No. 2 on the TSE Gold 100 in 2012, due to the cycling in of the triennial CONEXPO-CON/AGG. Earlier this month, the 2013 show broke all records, reaching new heights in its 45+ year history. CES spanned 1.92 million nsf, and drew 3,250 exhibiting companies and more than 150,000 attendees.  Three years ago, CES spent $5.4 million on general contracting services to GES in 2010, according to a 990 IRS form filed by CEA. (See the feature article, On the Margin, in the December 2012 issue of Trade Show Executive).

“We greatly appreciate our long relationship with GES. While the partnership has been highly successful and satisfactory, we felt it was time for a different approach and view of our event,” said Chupka. “This is in line with our efforts as a show organizer to try to deliver a new experience and an innovative approach to our customers each year.”

Reach Karen at (703) 907-7639 or kchupka@CE.org; Reach Joe at (214) 445-1111 or Joe.Popolo@freemanco.com; Steve Moster at (702) 515-5500 or smoster@ges.com