Six of the largest U.S. cable operators have taken the California Cable Television Association up on its offer of lower association dues and free rooms in return for a commitment to send top executives to the Western Show this winter.
AT&T Broadband, Adelphia Communications Corp., Charter Communications Inc., Cox Communications Inc., Insight Communications Co. and Time Warner Cable have accepted the CCTA's deal. All but Insight have a large business presence in California.
In a bid to stave off the kind of drop in attendance seen at this past June's National Show in Chicago, the CCTA said it would offer a "Back to Anaheim" package of benefits to induce operators to support the trade show.
Participating MSOs can enlist an "executive concierge" on the CCTA staff to help schedule management meetings around the trade gathering, which moves back to Anaheim, Calif., after a two-year stopover in Los Angeles.
Each company will vary its participation. Adelphia's corporate and regional operations staff will meet, as will its national marketing group. AT&T has slated a leadership session for top-level executives, while Charter's senior management will also convene at the show.
Cox's general managers and senior corporate managers will get together in Anaheim, and both Time Warner and Insight have promised that several top-level executives will attend.
Western Show planners have also added some new features. The traditional CableNET display will be supplemented with a separate interactive exhibit. And the session roster will include one-on-one conversations with such cable notables as Adelphia chairman John Rigas and AOL Time Warner Inc. president Robert Pittman.
Also added to the show calendar, the Cable TV Hall of Fame dinner and The Bandies, an awards show for interactive applications and content.