The Tree Care Industry Association’s annual TCI Expo trade show and conference concluded Nov.13, and for Bandit Industries it was a show to remember.
“I think that this was the best TCI show we’ve had in at least five years,” said Bandit Industries President Jerry Morey. “I do not remember a recent show where so many orders were written and committed to at the event.”
From the show’s opening day on Thursday, it was clear to the Bandit team on site that 2010 would be special. Among other things, nestled between the array of Bandit stump grinders and chippers was Parker Kligerman’s Team 42 Racing Dodge Charger, sponsored by Bandit Industries in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Bandit Industries stepped into the NASCAR arena earlier this year at Bristol, ultimately extending that sponsorship through the rest of the 2010 NASCAR season. Expo attendees were both surprised and excited to see the car on display; race fans took the opportunity to have their photo taken with the car, while many more picked up Parker Kligerman hero cards, many of which were autographed by the up-and-coming NASCAR driver.
Expo attendees also appreciated the variety of Bandit items handed out during the course of the event. People left the Bandit booth with shirts, calendars, coolers, chairs, free lunches, and one lucky visitor to the Bandit display won a getaway vacation courtesy of GetMoreVacations.com.
“We saw a lot of familiar faces,” said Kim Hasenbank, Bandit’s marketing and design strategist. “Customers and friends from all over stopped in. People were excited to see us, we were excited to see them, and aside from the times when classes or seminars were going on, our booth was packed. We even had requests for things like vehicle decals and Bandit stickers. People really wanted to share in the Bandit pride.”
Bandit Industries brought 12 pieces of equipment to the Pittsburgh-based expo, including some of the company’s most popular hand-fed chippers and stump grinders. A Model 1680 Beast Recycler served as the backdrop for the main table, while three video displays continually relayed product information courtesy of Bandit’s in-house video team. Though the overall impression was that attendance had fallen off from previous years, it was clear that those at the expo were highly motivated and focused on the future, pointing to a leaner tree care industry that’s ready to move forward.
“The tree care companies we encountered were upbeat,” said Morey. “We probably wrote more orders than any TCI show in the last seven to eight years.”
The three-day expo left the Bandit team exhausted but optimistic about the future of the industry and the state of the economy. With a bevy of new sales in the works and foundations built for new relationships, TCI Expo 2010 was a definite success for Bandit Industries.
“There seems to be a pent up demand for equipment,” said Morey. “And we seem to be in the driver’s seat.”