The energy and excitement that filled New Orleans after Super Bowl XLIV continued on the show floor of the D and E Halls at the Morial Convention Center, Feb. 22-24, for the 2010 International Roofing Expo.

The energy and excitement that filled New Orleans after Super Bowl XLIV continued on the show floor of the D and E Halls at the Morial Convention Center, Feb. 22-24, for the 2010 International Roofing Expo.

Total attendance was 6,915, with attendees from all segments of the roofing industry, including commercial and residential contractors, builders, remodelers, building owners, facility managers, architects and other ancillary industry professionals. “We are very pleased with the number of attendees and with the enthusiasm they brought to the buying and selling activity on the show floor,” said Donna Bellantone, Director of the Expo. “Exhibitors enjoyed the steady traffic as they introduced hundreds of new and innovative products to high-caliber decision-makers.”

In attendance were representatives from the industry’s leading roofing companies, including Ace Roofing, Advanced Roofing, Baker Roofing, Beachside Roofing, Best Roofing of NJ, Black Roofing, Burns & Scalo Roofing, Carriere-Stumm, CentiMark, Central States Roofing & Insulating, Cornell Roofing & Sheet Metal, D.C. Taylor, DKG & Associates, Dr. Roof Atlanta, Graham Roofing, Harness Roofing, Hayden Building, H-E-C Roofing, Jim Giese Commercial Roofing, Johnson Roofing, K Post, Kalkreuth Roofing & Sheet Metal, King of Texas Roofing, Kulp's of Stratford, Lon Smith Roofing, Nations Roof, Premium Roofing Systems, Roof Masters of America, Roof Systems of VA, Roofing Solutions, Snyder Roofing & Sheet Metal, Stanley Roofing, Sutter Roofing Company of Florida, Tecta America, Texas Fifth Wall Roofing Systems, Thoroughbred Contractors, United Materials Roofing, United States Roofing Corp, Upstate Roofing & Painting, and York Roofing.

Attendees represented all 50 states, with the largest number from Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, Illinois, California, Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania and Mississippi. The largest number of international attendees came from Canada, Mexico, Colombia, Germany, Australia, Japan, France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

Exhibit Hall

With 380 exhibiting companies and 91,000 net square feet of exhibit space, the tradeshow floor featured an array of products, new value-added services and the most innovative ideas in roofing materials and technology, including gutters, insulation, ladders, coatings/adhesives, built up, fasteners, machinery equipment/tools, metal roofing, modified bitumen, roof/decking materials, roof pavers, walkways/ballast, shingles, skylights, slate, spray polyurethane foam, tile, vapor retarders, ventilation, waterproofing, and much more.

“It was a great show. Our traffic was up, our leads were up, and the amount of actual new business deals we completed was phenomenal,” said Keith Lipps of S-5! “In addition, the attendance at our own floor presentations was incredible.” “The IRE 2010 was fantastic! We had a very positive response and close to 300 qualified leads of companies interested in Acculynx,” said Richard Spanton Jr. of Acculynx. “This year doubled our debut in 2009. The show could not have gone better!”
“Both the quantity and sincere interest level of the attendees at the IRE was excellent this year,” said Kate Baumann of Mule-Hide Products. “We have exhibited for 25 years and this was one of the best shows for Mule-Hide Products.”

“The quality of the attendees at the IRE was extremely impressive,” said Jack Henderson of DCI Products-SmartVent and SmartRidge. “The enthusiasm we experienced by the attendees to get the country back on track with home improvements and construction in general was equally as impressive.”

Of the 380 exhibiting companies, 77 were first-time exhibitors or exhibitors who haven’t exhibited in three or more years, including Action Fasteners, Ambassador Energy, Bayou Components, Broan, Bitumar, Copper Bella, Dayliter Skylights, EcoTech Roof Systems, Guiliano Brothers, High Stepper, Kennedy Skylights, Leaf Solution, Propex, Rollercut, Rooftop Equipment, Roofwalk, Smart Roof, SolarFrameWorks, Solderless, TBD2, Uniseal, and Weather Decision Technologies.

“This was our first year exhibiting at the IRE show, and it was a total success,” said Tom Heine of Titan / Speeflo. “We received many leads and generated numerous sales due to our presence.”

Attendees were quite pleased with the diverse selection of vendors. “The show was a great success this year. There were a number of new exhibitors that are sure to play a role in ‘the next generation of roofing,’” said Derek Lindsey of Infinity Roofing & Siding Inc. “The new technology was simply amazing!”

“I was pleasantly surprised to see quite a few new innovations and improved products at the show,” said Roger A. Wallace, CSI, AIA, of Architectural Metal Roofing Sales. “This was well worth the trip and I do intend on attending the next show – after all, it is the best in the world.”

Educational Conference

In addition to the assortment of products on the show floor, the show’s conference program offered a robust platform for education, training and knowledge through 43 educational sessions, including 10 technical, nine green building, six sales/service, six leadership/management, three general business, three legal/HR, three money matters and three workplace safety courses.

“I found this year's seminars really beneficial,” said Douglas Yeaman of Pacific Tech Construction. “In this difficult economy the more knowledge and information I have, the better prepared I will be to keep my business going.”

“The 2010 IRE was as good a show as I can remember,” said Chad Collins of Bone Dry Roofing Company. “The educational seminars were especially relevant to my business as they focused on the specific challenges and issues that face our industry daily.” “I was truly impressed with the variety of educational training that was offered this year,” said Keith R. Keller of Roofing Solutions, LLC. “Everyone from our field staff to the executive level came away with more knowledge. It was truly worthwhile.”

“There was a wide variety of topics to choose from and the presenters do a great job of keeping my interest,” said Tim Wood of Scott Enterprises, Inc. “I always take something away from the seminars that really rejuvenates me and my love of this business!”

“There was so much knowledge shared in the classes that we could actually apply to our business plan immediately, as well as wonderful ideas for our long-term development,” said Marti Alden of Alden Roofing & Renovations, LP. “It was definitely worth the investment sending five employees to learn and grow!”

Show Floor Highlights and Special Events

Combining the former New Product Pavilion and Green Pavilion into one showcase area, the Product Showcase was where attendees found the hottest industry trends and the latest new, cool and green products from 39 exhibiting companies. From a selection of 22 new products, a panel of industry experts awarded Saiz Tool Company with the “Best New Product” for their pneumatic powered, hand-held shingle cutting tool. The second place winner was Smartman Tools for their RacJack product, a roof jack system that makes starting steep roofs easy without ladder jacks or scaffolding. Capturing third place was Solderless for its liquid solution that turns the color of soldered seams from a grey/silver color to the color of aged copper.

Adding an extra dimension to their learning process, the Live Demonstrations taught attendees how to use, sell and install the latest roofing equipment, materials and techniques through a series of four demonstrations on Tuesday, February 23. Johns Manville, Carlisle SynTec and Triton Group/Neptune Coatings presented demonstrations covering TPO membranes, replacement and retrofit technology and cold spray applied membrane. Through the Exhibitor Product Clinics, OMG, Soprema and Equipter held multiple clinics that taught attendees tricks, tips and detailed instructions of their products and services. Attendees focused on metal roofing found a multitude of resources in the Metal Marketplace, featuring 56 exhibitors displaying creative and innovative designs, building concepts, tools and services.

Community Service Day

Giving back to the New Orleans community, a pre-show Community Service Day took place on Sunday, Feb. 21, where 75 attendees and exhibitors enthusiastically volunteered to perform renovations on five houses in the Hollygrove neighborhood of New Orleans, located in the city's 17th Ward.

In lieu of a single Keynote Address, a Power Panel was held on Monday, February 22, featuring a five member panel comprised of commercial, residential and green roofing contractors.

Discussing strategies and solutions for recovering from a tough economy, the panel included Rob Kornahrens, Founder & CEO, Advanced Roofing; Jamie McAdam, President, F.J. Dahill, Co.; Alex Hernandez, Vice President, Clark Roofing; Lisa Sprick, President, Sprick Roofing;  and Nelson Braddy, General Partner, King of Texas Roofing Company. Moderator Tom Swartz, Owner of J. J. Swartz Co., led the discussion which included questions from the audience.

Welcome Party

The opening night Welcome Party on Monday, Feb. 22, was held at Mardi Gras World, located next door to the Morial Convention Center. Attendees and exhibitors networked while browsing the floats, sculptures and props used in the Mardi Gras parade, before moving to the Plantation-styled Mansion, filled with delicious hors d’oeuvres, wine, beer, soda and live music.

Make Plans for 2011

The 2011 International Roofing Expo will be held Feb. 16-18 (Wednesday – Friday), in the North Halls at the Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada USA. Housing will open in May and online registration will open in August.