The American Wholesale Marketers Association (AWMA) Summit & Business Exchange (ABX), to be held Sept. 10 to 13, 2012 at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel at Amelia Island, Fla, is on pace to set new attendance records as convenience distributors and suppliers prepare for the annual conference that will feature timely educational programming and dozens of private, face-to-face meetings with business partners.
“This year’s attendance for both Summit & ABX are at an all time high,” reported AWMA President and CEO Scott Ramminger in a prepared statement. “We are up 11 percent in distributor company participation and 17 percent in manufacturer company participation. This is a testament to the value that is delivered by this annual event.”
While the ABX is sold out, Ramminger urged AWMA members not participating in those pre-planned face-to-face business discussions between trading partners, to attend the 15th annual AWMA Summit program. The Summit opens on Monday evening, September 10 with a reception, followed by Tuesday general sessions and a Tuesday evening reception.
The 2012 AWMA Summit will kick off with a political update by Reid Wilson, editor-in-chief of National Journal’s The Hotline, Washington’s premier daily tip sheet on politics, campaigns and elections. Wilson will provide an insider’s look into the current political environment in this heated presidential election year.
Wilson regularly contributes political analysis to National Journal Daily, National Journal Magazine, 2012 Decoded, and his weekly column, On the Trail. He frequently appears on MSNBC, CNN, and C-SPAN and is a political contributor to Sirius-XM Radio.
Before becoming editor-in-chief, Wilson was editor of Hotline On Call and served as a staff writer at The Hill newspaper. During the 2008 election cycle, Wilson authored a popular political blog at RealClearPolitics.com and hosted a nationally-broadcast political talk show on XM Satellite Radio.
After Wilson’s presentation, the program will turn to the opportunities and challenges provided by foodservice for convenience distributors. According to AWMA’s InfoMetrics data, overall foodservice sales by convenience distributors totaled nearly $625 million from January 1, 2012 through May 26, 2012, an increase of 17.7 percent. Unit sales increased 5.2 percent during that period.
In “Foodservice Opportunities and Challenges,” Bob Gatty, contributing editor, Convenience Distribution Magazine will outline recent developments among distributors who are leveraging foodservice opportunities to serve their customers and build profits.
This session, which will feature a discussion with distributors who are moving aggressively ahead with foodservice, will explore some of the strategies that are being used to boost sales and profit by meeting the on-the-go needs of today’s convenience store shoppers.
Then, business author Scott McKain will present the Summit’s keynote address. Attendees will learn how to create more compelling connections between their companies and their customers and how to stand out and move up, regardless of the economic climate in the industry.
McKain is the author of three Amazon.com #1 business bestsellers: ALL Business is Show Business, What Customers REALLY Want, and Collapse of Distinction – all teaching how to create differentiation in order to expand profits, increase sales, and engage customers to ensure loyalty.
McKain is one of about 150 living members of the Professional Speakers Hall of Fame. He was recently recognized by Social Media Marketing Magazine as one of the fifty most influential marketing authors on Twitter and GenJuice,