Northbrook, Ill. -- The cleaning community is abuzz about the innovation and new experiences delivered during the ISSA Show North America 2018 in Dallas, at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center. The Show welcomed 14,019 registered professionals from 61 countries, with more than 12% hailing from outside the U.S. Notably, 52% of registered attendees had not previously attended this flagship annual ISSA event.

ISSA, the worldwide cleaning industry association, prides itself on not only uniting the commercial cleaning industry supply chain into one global community, but on delivering new experiences to the community. ISSA Show North America 2018 delivered and achieved several firsts, creating a rich experience for exhibitors and attendees alike.

“We’re exceptionally pleased with how well this 2018 edition of the show performed,” said John Barrett, ISSA executive director. “We understood the inherent challenges associated with holding this event during Halloween week in a city that last hosted us in 1997. That said, it was important to go to Dallas, if only to enable new audiences to attend the show. Our hunch was correct, evidenced by the volume of first-time attendees. As important, there was a tremendously positive vibe all around—on the exhibit floor, in sessions, and at our networking events.”

Indeed, exhibitors and attendees both affirmed a positive experience in surveys conducted after the show, with the vast majority indicating likelihood to participate in the next edition of ISSA Show North America in Las Vegas, Nov. 18–21, 2019 (95% and 80% respectively).

Pavilions are always popular with attendees so they can maximize their time on the show floor. For instance, the Residential Pavilion gathers exhibitors catering to that segment in one location for deeper interaction with attendees interested in this sector. Based on the same idea, this year’s ISSA Show featured several new pavilions, including the Restoration Pavilion, which catered to that segment of professionals and offered hugely popular demos and learning sessions. The Startup Pavilion featured new and upcoming companies showcasing new products and technology—and a fresh perspective on cleaning.

“We use attendee feedback to help determine future additions to the ISSA Show experience,” said Kim Althoff, ISSA vice president of sales, trade shows and publications. “Attendees want to see more content from specialized, related industries, like restoration, and offerings from new companies, hence the Restoration, Startup, and First-Time Exhibitor pavilions.”

The ISSA show’s educational program also follows this example. The ISSA Cleaning Management Institute (CMI) introduced several new programs among the show’s 90-plus seminar and workshop offerings. And 2018 marked the debut of educational content from ISSA partner organizations, the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) and the National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors (NORMI).

ISSA Charities, formerly the ISSA Foundation, debuted its new mission and vision in Dallas, not with a traditional golf tournament, but rather by hosting a “Party for a Purpose” at Topgolf Dallas. With its broad appeal, the party was a tremendous success, hosting hundreds of participants who seamlessly melded business, fun, and philanthropy, with proceeds benefiting ISSA Charities’ primary programs, including ISSA Scholars, Cleaning for a Reason, and the ISSA Hygieia Network.

“We are gratified to include more members into our event within ISSA Show North America,” said, Mike Gies, ISSA Charities executive director. “The giving spirit is something we want to share with all members, partners, and friends.”

Another first, making its debut in Dallas, was ISSA Charities inaugural Day of Service, which preceded ISSA Show North America by gathering local residential members to clean the homes of 20 Dallas-area cancer patients free of charge.

“New” is the very definition of the ISSA Innovation Award Program, and new to the program for 2018 was that the judging committee was comprised entirely of female cleaning industry leaders: Holly Borrego (C&W Services); Vicki Brown (Harmony Clean); Judie Cooper (The Smithsonian Institution); Eileen McMorrow (The McMorrow Reports Facility Management & Design Insights); and Linda Silverman (Maintex).

The 2018 Innovation of the Year was awarded to Hydro Systems for its product EvoClean, a breakthrough water-powered laundry chemical dispenser. Because the caliber of competition was especially intense this year, Honorable Mention status was awarded to several runner-up products that were vying for Innovation of the Year. 2018 Honorable Mention awardees included: the KIRA B50 Intelligent Cleaning Robot by Kärcher North America; The KOLO Smart Monitoring System by Georgia-Pacific (GP) PRO; Scotch-Brite Clean & Shine Pad by 3M Commercial Solutions Division; and Tork PeakServe Continuous Towel Refill and System by Essity Professional Hygiene North America.

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