Live from Medtrade: More exhibitors, more products, more attendees

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Tuesday, October 16, 2018

ATLANTA – The show floor at Medtrade on Tuesday was bustling, with the number of exhibitors up 4% over last year and the number of attendees set to meet or exceed goals.

Of the exhibitors, 60 were companies exhibiting for the first time and 25 were “dark accounts” or companies that haven’t exhibited in a few years, says Kevin Gaffney, group show director.

“(Bottom line), attendees have more products to choose from than last year,” he said.

It was too early for attendance figures at press time on Tuesday, but Gaffney says the number of pre-registered attendees for the show’s conference sessions was up compared to last year, and the number of pre-registered attendees who showed up for the show floor was expected to hit, or exceed, 85%.

AirAvant Medical was one of the 60 first-time exhibitors. It was using Medtrade to build an outside sales team and distributor base for its new product, the Bongo Rx, an alternative to CPAP therapy. The company was enjoying good foot traffic at its booth on Tuesday, thanks to the Bongo Rx being featured in the show’s New Product Pavilion.

“They’re seeing it there and coming over,” said Ron Richard, one of the four co-founders of the company.

It was also the Medtrade debut for Dynarex’s new line of DME products. The company, which recently partnered with FODAC on a new charitable program, has been in the disposables market for many years, but not the DME market.

“This is our official launch,” said Melodi Pomeroy, senior vice president of marketing. “We’re getting a lot of inquiries.”

While the overall footprint of the show floor was tighter, 3B Medical was an exhibitor with a bigger booth this year. CEO Alex Lucio called Medtrade a “branding exercise” for the company’s lineup of new products, which will include the Lumin Bullet, a device that disinfects CPAP hoses, in December; and the Aer, a portable oxygen concentrator, in January.

“We’ll see what the ROI is,” he said. “If we can get two to three new customers, that will rationalize it.”

The number of new exhibitors may have been up, but attendee Patty Mastandrea was at Medtrade to check in with her company’s existing manufacturer and vendor partners, including Brightree, Drive DeVilbiss Healthcare and Philips Respironics. MedCare Equipment Co. choses its partners selectively, asking them to complete RFPs to earn their business.

“That’s our real goal here—to see what they, specifically, have that’s new or what they’re offering for rebates,” said Mastandrea, COO. “We’ve scaled down to about 10 partners. It minimizes invoice processing.”

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