A crowd of show-goers walks the show floor during Surfaces 2010. Photo courtesy of Hanley Wood.

Surfaces 2011, which will run Jan. 25-27 in Las Vegas, with pre-show education events on Jan. 24, is on track to be bigger than the 2010 edition. According to show organizers, more than 500 manufacturers have already signed up for this year’s event, an increase of 13 percent. Additionally, the show will include more than 125 new exhibitors, and is expected to see a more than 20 percent increase in attendance; Surfaces is being held in conjunction with StonExpo/Marmomacc Americas.

D. Christopher Davis, president and ceo of the World Floor Covering Association, is not surprised by the increased interest. “Attending Surfaces, particularly in this current economy, is essential,” he said. “Not only is this the place to get a read on where the industry is headed, it’s the place to see what’s new and likely to sell.”

He added that Surfaces is also important to give floor covering business people the opportunity to network with one another. “In a down economy, both buyers and sellers are more interested in working out mutually beneficially business relationships.”

Davis is also excited about the change of venue. “When [the WFCA] ran Surfaces, it was held at the Sands Expo & Convention Center, and I am exceedingly excited about Mandalay Bay as the new venue. I think it will be a major improvement and will be a huge boon to the success of the show.”

During the show, WFCA will provide a place for members to interact and relax at its Membership Lounge, located at booth #S2332. Additionally at the show, the WFCA will announce the 2011 winner of its Gold Standard Retailer Award. “The award goes to a specialty flooring retailer that best exemplifies those attributes we believe all WFCA member dealers should strive for,” Davis explained. The winner will receive $5,000, along with Gold Membership signage material to use in his or her store.

One of the many educational seminars offered during Surfaces 2010. Photo courtesy of Hanley Wood.

NFT, FCI at Surfaces

National Floor Trendswill once again hold its annual Styling Excellence Awards at Surfaces. Show-goers can vote for the best products in a range of flooring categories, through ballots available at the show and online.

Also returning this year is the New Product Showcase. Unlike last year’s show where the showcase was held on the show floor with tabletop displays, the 2011 edition will feature new products in a glass case in the show lobby. As part of the showcase, Surfaces will hold its annual Best New Product contest. The winner will be awarded during the show and judged by a panel that will include the staffs ofNFT, Floor Covering InstallerandTILE Magazine.

NFT columnists will be on hand to present the latest industry information to attendees. Seminars include: “Everything You’ve Always Wanted to Know About the Commercial Flooring Business,” 3 to 4:30 p.m. Jan. 24, presented by columnist Dave Stafford, Re:Source Floors owner and president Alan Beswick, and Starnet Worldwide president and ceo Jeanne Matson; “Marketing Your Business on a Beer Budget,” noon to 1 p.m. Jan. 25, and “Heart and Mind Leadership,” 4 to 5:30 p.m. Jan. 25, both presented by columnist Sam Allman; and  “Increasing Sales through the Psychology of Color,” 8 to 9:30 a.m. Jan. 26, and “Color Visions 2011, PLUS Hot Marketing Trends You Need to Know,” 8 to 9:30 a.m. Jan. 27, both presented by columnist Annette Callari.FCIColumnist Jon Namba will present two installation-related seminars at the show. On Jan. 25, from 4:00-5:30 p.m., he will moderate a panel discussion on “Common Causes and Corrections for Installation Failures.” The panel will include Steve Seabaugh, Gerald Sloan, and Jim Walker. On Jan. 26, from 4:00-5:30 p.m., he will offer a presentation on “Proper Substrate Preparation for Hardwood, Bamboo & Laminate.”

Visit us at Surfaces at booth #S2238. For more information on the show, visit www.surfaces.com.