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What You Missed at World of Concrete

The World of Concrete 2009 has come and gone. Much trepidation and cautious anticipation existed as time marched toward this event. Above all, our industry needed to know the impact that this recession would have on both the number and the attitude of the attendees as a predictor of what is to come. Face it; we’re all tired of listening to the media and the economists. What matters most are the people and companies that are on the front, slugging it out and making it happen.

So what did WOC 2009 tell us about the market and you, as companies? The first and most obvious thing we noticed this year was attendance. Down, some say way down, and others support only a marginal slide in the numbers. No matter who you choose to believe, the fact is that not only was attendance down for the residential industry but those who did come brought only the were needed to conduct their business and continue pursuing the opportunities for education and advancement. There were, of course, exceptions to this rule but as a whole, this is a pretty true picture.

The second, and perhaps most important thing noticed throughout the halls, and by the vast majority of exhibitors polled, is the fact that those in attendance were not there out of shear curiosity or to grab a give-away. This year’s WOC ushered in solid business. Volume of contacts was replaced by the quality of the interest and the lead. This doesn’t necessarily translate into volume of product sold matching previous years but in terms of an analysis on the market and where we are headed this year, it does evidence a measure of confidence.

WOC 2009 definitely had excitement. For starters, those that gathered with the CFA on Tuesday night found a pleasant and fulfilling meal at the Pampas Brazilian Grille. Even more fantastic, they weren’t alone. We had a terrific turnout for this event given the relationship to attendance at the show and again found solid support from the National Associates in the Association as sponsors. You can find the sponsors touted on the next page.

What you certainly also missed was the first public exposure to the new CFA Certified Contractor Program. Offering both a trainin seminar and the rigorous Certified Technician exam, the CFA saw great interest continuing to build momentum for a program that will most undoubtedly shape the future of our industry. Although softened by the low turnout from residential construction, the seminar and exam still compiled 34 and 24 attendees respectively and ushered in another set of companies now striving to become certified companies in their marketplaces. If you haven’t looked into this program yet, you’ve been in hiding and you should begin today to identify this as a real potential in your tool chest of business assets.

Another exciting aspect of WOC 2009 was the moving and shaking in the product world. Exhibitors took it up a notch to unveil confidence and to encourage those in attendance to continue to look toward the future with the opportunities they could choose to create today. As we walked the exhibit halls and responded to invitations, we found some things definitely worthy of mentioning to those of you that missed out.

CONCRETE FORMS SERVICES, INC.

A strong supporter of the CFA for the last several years, this company once again braved the market and set-up a very real show for the attendee. What could be more real than showing off a set of footing forms with over 5,000 pours. To make it even more special, the contractor that helped invent the system and has proven the performance through the number of pours was in attendance, signed the form set and was available for pictures. Imagine the future possibilities of your investment today paying off that far in the future… or further. You’ll get another chance to see them and perhaps this set of record-making forms at the CFA Annual Convention this year in Florida.

CIFA USA INC.

This lights were turned up, the microphones checked and the cameras rolling. CIFA USA came to WOC 2009 with a big statement and invitation to a formal press conference. As Matteo Rolla, President and CEO of CIFA USA took the podium, the crowd gathered received the news that Zoomlion, a very prominent leader in the worldwide pumping industry had finalized acquisition of CIFA with a goal of maintaining brand recognition and strengthening the ability to serve the U.S. and other key worldwide markets. This union is further described in the press release found in this magazine. Together, this powerful force represents more than $2 billion in U.S. revenue alone.

TRIMBLE NAVIGATION LTD

The leader in the industry when it comes to making your job efficient just became even more efficient. Trimble Navigation has had a lot of fun in and around the CFA and has proven to a large number of contractors the advantages to becoming reliant on the computer and the accuracy of robotic layouts. This year, they took their game up a notch with the addition of the LR20 receiver and several new software integration announcements that make this full-featured system even more robust, acceptable and useful to the lean approach that must be taken to the marketplace now and in the future. Read more about the waves made at WOC 2009 by Trimble in their full set of press releases that have been added to the CFA website.

THE LIST GOES ON AND ON AND ON…

There were so many great companies at WOC 2009 this year that made the commitment to continue supporting the industry and encouraging you to “not waste this good recession”. The companies that you missed out seeing included:

BEP, BIK, Bilco, Boman Kemp, Can American, Certainteed, CIFA, Concrete Contractor, Cosella-Dorken, Cranes & Equipment, Durand, EZ Footings, Grip-Tite, Hartman, Hiab, Nox-Crete, Oak Ridge Solutions, PALFINGER, PCA, Precise Forms, Pumpstar, Putzmeister, Rod Chomper, Schwing, Sermac, Stone Slinger, THERMOMASS, Tremco, Trimble, Wall-Ties, Western Forms, and White Cap

Don’t miss the next chance to see the exciting commitment these companies are making to help you forge through this recession and uncover new ways of leading your market. Make plans for attendance to the CFA Summer Convention in Amelia Island, FL where most, if not all, will be on display.

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Concrete FACTS, a publication of the Concrete Foundations Association, is THE voice for residential concrete industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the cast-in-place concrete industry. Subscriptions to Concrete FACTS is available to anyone involved or interested in the residential concrete industry as a service to your industry. Please contact CFA Headquarters to find out more about your free subscription or Email Us