The bi-annual in-person ProMat trade show—the largest North American event dedicated to material handling and logistics solutions—has been canceled. The event was to have been held April 12-16 in Chicago, but due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the event has been canceled for the first time in its 35-year existence, according to MHI, the trade association that hosts ProMat.
However, a virtual event is being planned for the same timeframe, to be known as ProMatDX (for Digital Experience).
The National Retail Foundation’s annual trade show, traditionally held in January, has already announced its plans to go virtual in 2021.
MH&L’s readers will perhaps recall how attendance to this past year’s MODEX show (which rotates annually with ProMat) was down by 50% from expected attendance, due to fears over COVID. In fact, the World Health Organization officially declared the pandemic the same week that MODEX was occurring in Atlanta, prompting many attendees (including me) to leave Atlanta sooner than expected. In fact, MODEX was one of the very last large-scale trade shows to have been held before COVID led to widespread cancellation of in-person events.
According to John Paxton, chief operating officer and CEO/designate of MHI, the goal is to allow virtual attendees to interact with each other as well as sponsors through a digital platform that will stream videos of equipment and system solutions in action. As in years past, ProMatDX will also include keynote sessions and seminar sessions on trends and technologies.
Registration details and information are available here. As in years past, MH&L—which celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2020—will be covering ProMatDX.