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HFA’s Educational Seminars Draw Record Crowds to the RRC — Despite the Heat of the Las Vegas Summer

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A year after the inaugural Market, the World Market Center showed it was prepared for anything and did a great job at keeping buyers and exhibitors in high spirits. The buzz about Market could be heard all around Las Vegas, and from the moment attendees stepped off their planes, they were welcomed by the World Market Center and the city of Las Vegas. Taxi cab and shuttle drivers appreciated the large crowds of furniture retailers and knew exactly where to go when asked to take a retailer to the WMC. Buyers found registration to be trouble-free, shuttle service between different locations went smoothly, and when possible thunderstorms and rain loomed overhead on Monday afternoon, the World Market Center showed it was prepared and pulled out thousands of umbrellas to give to attendees. Crowds of buyers filled the hallways and WHFA’s Retailer Resource Center. Buyers were lined-up out the door early Monday morning to hear Phil Gutsell, GutSELL & Associates, give his seminar on How to Sell Value Instead of Price and the crowds kept coming. WHFA estimates that over 1,000 attendees partook in the summer seminar series, many spending the entire day in the RRC finding pearls of wisdom from each and every session — taking a break only to enjoy the $5.99 lunch offered in the RRC before heading right back in to hear the next enlightening seminar and jot-down more notes. With the help of the WMC’s marketing team, the WHFA Educational seminars received great exposure, and the record-breaking attendance showed that even the hot July Las Vegas temperature could not keep buyers from soaking up some much needed education. The Las Vegas media also became interested in the RRC’s seminar speakers. Rich Kizer and Georganne Bender, from Kizer and Bender Speaking, became “stars for the day” and were followed around for the day by an NBC reporter and provided retailing tips to the audience. Many factors play into the reason why education has become such an important part of the market experience. The economy, competition, staffing and more make it all the more important to provide market attendees with valuable tools, and that is what the RRC does best. The WHFA business services tradeshow also brought a variety of retailers and business together in the RRC. In just one short year, WHFA’s Retailer Resource Center has doubled its size and is providing market goers with over 50 industry service providers in two locations. Long term WHFA supporters such as PROFITsystems, Myriad Software, Bryant Forney Associates and more were joined by new faces like MasterPlan Magnetics, GreenHouse Design, and Cory Home Delivery Service, giving the retailer even more options for their business. In an effort to try to accommodate all of the service providers showing interest in joining the RRC, the July Market saw the satellite location of the WHFA RRC grow to its largest size yet of over 5,000 square feet, with over 35 industry resource suppliers showing their goods and services. This, along with the RRC in the main building, provided retailers with a plethora of business-building connections. Retailers also enjoyed the other services the RRC had to offer. Becoming their home-away-from-home, the WHFA RRC provided buyers with delicious coffee, free Internet access, fresh-baked cookies and scrumptious lunch daily. The popular $5.99 lunch brought a variety of new retailers into the space and proved to be a great value and was sold out daily. “We had a great Market and saw many new faces in our space. Retailers are seeing the value in the Retail Resource Center, and many are visiting daily to attend seminars or do business,” said WHFA Executive Director Sharron Bradley. “We are really looking forward to the January Winter Market when we move to our new space in Building B. There will be much excitement surrounding the Market and the beautiful new facility at World Market Center. Our new space on the 16th floor will provide buyers with everything they have become accustomed to at the RRC and more.” The hype is already buzzing about January Market and the inaugural opening of Building B. With all of the success that World Market Center has had during the past three Markets, January will be a Market that you sure don’t want to miss. About WHFA The Western Home Furnishings Association is member-owned and the western affiliate of the National Home Furnishings Association, providing programs, services, and networking opportunities to western home furnishings retailers since 1944.

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