Will The NRF Show Reflect The Industry?

Written by Evan Schuman
January 8th, 2009

Will the National Retail Federation’s annual show in New York next week show the signs of an industry breaking under an ultra weak economy? Perhaps, but the intial numbers suggest a drop.

During last year’s show, NRF reported about 18,500 attendees, according to NRF VP Susan Newman. On Wednesday (Jan. 7), just four days before the conference starts, only 11,000 had registered. Last year at this time, 12,000 had registered. To be fair, a healthy chunk of the show’s attendees have always registered at the last minute or at the event itself so it’s not clear yet where that will shake out,

Much more telling—as these numbers appear to be final—are the number of exhibitors. There will be 50 fewer companies exhibiting this year, bringing last year’s 580 exhibitors down to 530 this year.

On the vendor side, the numbers are actually a lot worse as Newman reports that exhibitors will be bringing some 700 fewer employees to help out. “We will be feeling the effects of the economy,” she said.

Even among the attendees who will be there, fewer dollars will be spent, with about one-third of those who had previously paid for the full show will this year move into the expo-only segment, which is free for retailers.

One area that is sharply up is international. Last year’s show boasted 466 non-U.S. companies at the show, a figure that will climb to at least 594 this year, Newman said. The country representing the biggest increase? Brazil.


Comments are closed.


StorefrontBacktalk delivers the latest retail technology news & analysis. Join more than 60,000 retail IT leaders who subscribe to our free weekly email. Sign up today!

Most Recent Comments

Why Did Gonzales Hackers Like European Cards So Much Better?

I am still unclear about the core point here-- why higher value of European cards. Supply and demand, yes, makes sense. But the fact that the cards were chip and pin (EMV) should make them less valuable because that demonstrably reduces the ability to use them fraudulently. Did the author mean that the chip and pin cards could be used in a country where EMV is not implemented--the US--and this mis-match make it easier to us them since the issuing banks may not have as robust anti-fraud controls as non-EMV banks because they assumed EMV would do the fraud prevention for them Read more...
Two possible reasons that I can think of and have seen in the past - 1) Cards issued by European banks when used online cross border don't usually support AVS checks. So, when a European card is used with a billing address that's in the US, an ecom merchant wouldn't necessarily know that the shipping zip code doesn't match the billing code. 2) Also, in offline chip countries the card determines whether or not a transaction is approved, not the issuer. In my experience, European issuers haven't developed the same checks on authorization requests as US issuers. So, these cards might be more valuable because they are more likely to get approved. Read more...
A smart card slot in terminals doesn't mean there is a reader or that the reader is activated. Then, activated reader or not, the U.S. processors don't have apps certified or ready to load into those terminals to accept and process smart card transactions just yet. Don't get your card(t) before the terminal (horse). Read more...
The marketplace does speak. More fraud capacity translates to higher value for the stolen data. Because nearly 100% of all US transactions are authorized online in real time, we have less fraud regardless of whether the card is Magstripe only or chip and PIn. Hence, $10 prices for US cards vs $25 for the European counterparts. Read more...
@David True. The European cards have both an EMV chip AND a mag stripe. Europeans may generally use the chip for their transactions, but the insecure stripe remains vulnerable to skimming, whether it be from a false front on an ATM or a dishonest waiter with a handheld skimmer. If their stripe is skimmed, the track data can still be cloned and used fraudulently in the United States. If European banks only detect fraud from 9-5 GMT, that might explain why American criminals prefer them over American bank issued cards, who have fraud detection in place 24x7. Read more...

Our apologies. Due to legal and security copyright issues, we can't facilitate the printing of Premium Content. If you absolutely need a hard copy, please contact customer service.