IGC Chicago’s ninth annual show occupied Navy Pier with both information and entertainment, from the expanse of new and proven products for independent garden centers in the exhibit hall to the retail inspirations found in the IGC Retail Conference upstairs and keynotes in the IGC Grand Ballroom.
“The buzz across the show was big,” says Jeff Morey, IGC Show Co-founder and Co-producer. “We were especially happy to talk with so many first-time show-goers on the floor, who said IGC Chicago is firmly on their calendar for next year.”
Attendees of IGC Show 2015 browse the hundreds of vendor booths on the show floor at Navy Pier in Chicago.
Retailers were not only looking to bring back new product for their stores, many said they were sizing up vendor booth displays to incorporate the product presentations into their own merchandising.
IGC Chicago’s keynote program drew favorable reactions from the audience, including a standing ovation as Ernest Wertheim walked onto the IGC Grand Ballroom stage and at the conclusion of his talk.
Marcus Lemonis, star of CNBC’s 'The Profit', also brought the audience to their feet as he spoke in length to answer retail business questions from the crowd and offered his personal e-mail for those whose questions couldn’t be answered due to time constraints. Lemonis’ e-mail address can be found on the IGC Show's Facebook page.
During his keynote, titled 'So What’s Your Story,' Robert Hendrickson shared his own story as a musician with stars in his eyes turned garden center marketing guru to demonstrate just how engaging stories can be.
More ideas and inspirations were discovered upstairs from the show floor, in the IGC Retail Conference’s five focused tracks. In the classrooms, attendees made notes of the track leaders’ strategies for making their businesses even stronger, and exchanged ideas with fellow classmates on what works – and what doesn’t – for them.
IGC buyers and vendors turned their focus on networking and fun at Tuesday evening’s IGC Show Party and Concert with the Gin Blossoms. The hum of business talk and conversation filled the IGC Grand Ballroom, followed by the band’s high-energy performance of their chart-topping hits.
IGC Chicago will return to Navy Pier next year for its 10-year anniversary from August 16-18, 2016. IGC East will also return to the Baltimore Convention Center, July 26-28, 2016.