A Show Grows in Vegas

Published in CSP Daily News

Dollar Store Expo to offer glimpse of products, programs for retailers in $5-and-under sector

LAS VEGAS -- The fourth annual Dollar Store Expo, which will take place Wednesday and Thursday, June 22-23, at the Las Vegas Convention Center, promises to be a one-stop sourcing opportunity for everyone involved with the $5-and-under retailing business. Now in its fourth go-round, Dollar Store Expo has enjoyed double-digit growth in each of its three preceding years.

It began in 2002 focused on the $1 trade with 200 booths. Last year, it was named among the top six fastest-growing shows in the United States by Tradeshow Week magazine. Also in 2004, [image-nocss] the show expanded its focus beyond the $1 segment to incorporate the $1-$5 price-point. And since consumables have become such an important force in the dollar-store business model, a Food Pavilion was launched last year as well.

Staying relevant is the No. 1 responsibility of a tradeshow, which is hosted by the Retail Dollar Store Association. All the attendeesretailers and suppliershave their businesses to run: conducting day-to-day operations, controlling overhead and maximizing profitability. It's the job of the tradeshow to give them an overview of the marketplace so they can start deciding how it relates to where they are with their stores, locations and consumers, and where they are as an operation and as a profit center.

In order to continue evolving the show and making it relevant, at the Retail Dollar Store Association, we constantly look at what's going on, said Dell Holden, director of retail relations for the Retail Dollar Store Association and Dollar Store Expo. Today there's a trend in between: There's a trend in urban; there's a trend in ethnic. Those will be incorporated into next year's format. With the monitoring we do of the marketplace, we try to uncover trends that have possibilities, to support them and see where they go.

The major focus is to bring together vendors that can fill the product needs for all levels and types of retailers, as well as up-to-the-minute information and education for the $1-to-$5 retail channel.

In all, between 1,200 and 1,500 key buyers representing the grocery, convenience, drug/pharmacy and mass trades are expected to attend. With 400 confirmed exhibitors occupying 500 to 600 booths, there are expected to be approximately 15,000 different product lines on display in all relevant categories, including housewares, HBC, office supplies, stationery, consumables, hardware and electronics. And, of course, the Food Pavilion returns for the second year.

Also, there will be technology vendors representing such categories POS systems and cash-flow management solutions. We're pretty much set to reflect all that's going on in the dollar store marketplace, said Holden.

The show also will mark the introduction of Dollar Retailing News, the nation's only publication dedicated to covering the burgeoning dollar and value channel. The publication reports on the growing number of programs associated with dollar and in-store value offerings at the retail level, as well as the merchandising executives involved.

Dollar Retailing News is published by CSP Information Group Inc. in cooperation with the Retail Dollar Store Association and Dollar Store Expo. Dollar Retailing News is published in digital format and is available at www.cspnet.com/drn.