Industry Research

LCT, NLA Land A Big Date In Limo History With East Show

Posted on November 1, 2013
The LCT Show East central sports bar and lounge, a new attraction, offered attendees a place to relax, eat, drink and network throughout the trade show floor hours at the Atlantic City Convention Center.

The LCT Show East central sports bar and lounge, a new attraction, offered attendees a place to relax, eat, drink and network throughout the trade show floor hours at the Atlantic City Convention Center.

The LCT Show East and Lincoln logos ushered attendees into the trade show floor at the Atlantic City Convention Center, featuring more than 60 luxury chauffeured vehicles on display. The event has been renewed for Oct. 19-21, 2014 at the same location.
The LCT Show East and Lincoln logos ushered attendees into the trade show floor at the Atlantic City Convention Center, featuring more than 60 luxury chauffeured vehicles on display. The event has been renewed for Oct. 19-21, 2014 at the same location.

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. ― LCT Show East brought in 1,100 attendees this week as the Limousine, Charter & Tour/National Limousine Association team launched a new industry trade marketplace and educational conference in Atlantic City.

The four-digit breakthrough was better than expected for LCT and the NLA, the two organizations that co-produced the three-day event Oct. 27-29 at Caesars Atlantic City. The hotel-casino complex was the site of the first-ever limousine industry trade show organized by LCT in 1984 and soon co-sponsored by the NLA after it formed in 1985. That first-generation show was held in Atlantic City for most of the years through 1997, after which LCT departed for Las Vegas and started the annual International LCT Show in 1998.

“This event was reinvigorated to afford the NLA and the staff at LCT face time with our East Coast constituents — be that readers of LCT and/or members of the NLA,” said LCT Publisher and Show Chair Sara Eastwood-McLean. “Most of this industry is made of independent business owners who cannot leave their companies to trek to our International show in Las Vegas. We did this event especially for them. We are happy that 1,100 attendees turned out. From the vendors to the NLA board of directors, the feedback was all positive. We worked extra hard to make sure our guests felt well taken care of with top notch networking parties and topical sessions. And, I believe the venue helped to make people feel good — the overall show was beautiful!”

The LCT Show East central sports bar and lounge, a new attraction, offered attendees a place to relax, eat, drink and network throughout the trade show floor hours at the Atlantic City Convention Center.
The LCT Show East central sports bar and lounge, a new attraction, offered attendees a place to relax, eat, drink and network throughout the trade show floor hours at the Atlantic City Convention Center.

This week’s event featured more than 60 vehicles on the floor of the nearby Atlantic City Convention Center, spanning every possible type of luxury chauffeured vehicle model. True to the LCT reputation for industry “firsts,” LCT Show East also marked the industry debuts of next-generation versions of two established luxury vehicle models: The 2015 Cadillac Escalade SUV and the 2014 Mercedes-Benz S550 premium sedan.

The high attendance also will boost the NLA’s coffers since the trade group will get a sizable portion of registration proceeds to devote to its legislative and regulatory agenda on behalf of limousine operators nationwide. The NLA Show Committee and various boards of directors were instrumental in shaping an educational agenda that spoke directly to the biggest issues facing limousine operators: Mobile app on-demand technologies, Super Bowl transportation service challenges, Obamacare rules and problems, social media marketing, and coping with generational changes among operators and clients.

Overall, LCT Show East heralds a new chapter for the national limousine industry, with LCT and the NLA having filled the void left by the Limo Digest Show which announced last November it was leaving the Atlantic City limo trade show market. The NLA and LCT immediately began working to produce a higher-quality, more-focused industry trade show aimed at the needs of East Coast operators.

“One of our primary goals has been to raise the level of professionalism within the industry, and we accomplished that in Atlantic City, where we were face-to-face with so many operators who haven’t been to an LCT event,” said Ty Bobit, the CEO of LCT’s parent company, Bobit Business Media, who was the first publisher of LCT Magazine when Bobit acquired it in 1983. “We were also proud to ‘give back,’ with a good portion of the show proceeds going to the NLA to help protect operators.”

Given the resurgent success of LCT Show East, LCT and NLA are already planning for the LCT Show East 2014 scheduled for Oct. 19-21 at Caesars Atlantic City and the Atlantic City Convention Center.

NLA President Gary Buffo summed up the show from front-to-end: “On behalf of the NLA, I'd like to first thank LCT for our continued partnership with our operator educational and exhibit shows. This Show truly had so much energy and created synergies beyond my belief. I had many of our East Coast members thank me personally for bringing this Show back to the East Coast. Knowing our partnered Shows are our largest annual fundraisers, the NLA board was pleasantly surprised at the overwhelming support of our members at this Show. Thanks to our membership registration numbers, we doubled our fundraising goal. These funds are vital for funding the NLA's daily business, which we do on behalf of our membership. Special appreciation goes out to our vendor, supplier and operator sponsors. Your financial support allows us the funds to promote, market, and arrange the most powerful shows in our industry. We appreciate your support and certainly the trust you have in our dedicated efforts to facilitate our shows. Thank you to all the operators for your overwhelming support. Please support all of the businesses who support you, the sponsors of our shows. I look forward to seeing all of your next year at the annual NLA/LCT East Show.”

The next main industry gathering, of course, is the International LCT Show, which for years has been the runaway leading global chauffeured transportation industry event in the world. It will be held Feb. 16-18, 2014 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, and will once again be produced and planned with the expertise of the NLA.

A complete report on LCT Show East events and education will be published in the December 2013 issue of LCT Magazine and on LCTmag.com this month, to be followed by select educational articles from the event in monthly issues throughout the first half of 2014.

— Martin Romjue, LCT editor

Related Topics: Atlantic city, Gary Buffo, history of the limo industry, industry education, LCT-NLA Show East, limo tradeshows, National Limousine Association, networking, Sara Eastwood, Ty Bobit

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