New Orleans -- Attendance at this year's National Show was more than 17,000,
compared with roughly 24,000 last year, National Cable & Telecommunications
Association officials said Wednesday.
Despite the drop in numbers, the NCTA called this year's event a success
based on feedback from exhibitors and attendees alike.
NCTA president Robert Sachs noted that this year's show utilized one-third
less exhibition space, and 'there is a correlation' between that and attendance
falling, since fewer booths means fewer people being around to man them.
'But top management and top middle management were all here,' he added. 'They
were on the floor.'
The NCTA this year offered exhibitors the options of taking lower-cost
'suites' -- essentially small booths -- which were grouped together on one
corner of the floor.
Sachs said the response from vendors that took those suites, such as Oxygen
Media, was positive.
But during a press tour of the floor Wednesday, one of the vendors in a suite
-- Showtime Networks Inc. senior vice president of field operations Pat Burks --
complained about the lack of traffic.
Other suite occupants, such as Scripps Networks, said they were happy with
the location and were able to conduct meetings where real business got done
without a lot of noise or interruptions.
Sachs described this year's show as the best during his tenure this past
'We really put an emphasis on quality and content,' he added. 'We're finally
finding the right formula here.'