Produced by Exertis Almo, the latest E4 Experience (opens in new tab) traveled to Reston, VA, (not far from Washington, DC) on Sept. 23. It was the first time E4 has been in the area since 2018, and I was invited to experience, well, the experience.
On the afternoon before the show, I helped the Exertis Almo team, along with exhibitors and AVIXA representatives, prepare 5,000 meals for Generosity Feeds, which helps to provide food to about 400 children in the Reston area each week. That certainly started the experience on a good note.
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Melody Craigmyle, vice president of marketing, reported 520 registered attendees and more than 40 exhibitors for the one-day event, which is focused on the tenets of educate, explore, engage, and expo (E4). The event attracted registrants from eight universities and seven Fortune 500 companies, in addition to integrators, resellers, and consultants.
The show floor was certainly packed at times, and there were plenty of people at the training sessions. It wasn’t just tabletop exhibits, either; there were several video walls and oversized displays. The show floor also featured projectors, mounts, digital signage solutions, audio products, cameras, and more. Craigmyle said savvy integrators regularly bring end users to E4, using it as a “showroom for the day.”
Attendees were also provided with access to CTS-certified courses, covering everything from workspaces to conducting a needs analysis to successful project management. Not a bad deal, considering admission was free and included a buffet lunch.
“It’s really a great combination for success, and we’ve seen it over the years,” said Craigmyle. “People are very excited to get back.”
I even got recruited to be part of the show. I’m usually the one asking the questions, but this time I was part of a panel, “The Future of AV in 2023,” which was moderated by Alesia Hendley, a multimedia journalist and business development representative at Audinate.
Sam Taylor, executive vice president and COO, Exertis Almo, enjoyed the “energy” of the day. Energy is not one of the four Es, but you could certainly make the case for it. He thought attendees were happy to research products in person, instead of virtually, and they were also enjoying the networking opportunities.
Beyond E4, Taylor said the company is performing ahead of its business plan, and the sales forces from both companies have successfully merged into one team. Following the celebration of its 75th anniversary, Almo Corporation was acquired by Exertis (opens in new tab) in late 2021. Exertis Almo now has close to 240 employees, including almost two dozen business development managers (BDMs). “They’re kind of the technical arm of the sales force,” he explained.
Supply chain issues continue to hamper the Pro AV industry, though Exertis Almo added inventory early to minimize the impact. Taylor said the company recognized supply chain issues in its consumer appliance division, which prompted the increased stockpile. “We saw shortages before there before they hit our space,” he recalled.
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The next stop for E4 is Boston on Oct. 20, and Craigmyle reported the expo has already attracted a record 55 exhibitors. Plans are also in progress for a return to Dallas and the New York Metro area in 2023, with two potentially new locations as well. If you’re in the neighborhood, E4 provides a great opportunity for networking, product research, education, and learning more about Exertis Almo’s products and services.