Changes are coming to the world of motorcycle shows.  And, depending on your point of view, perhaps not for the better for general public consumers.  The Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC) is making two major changes to its annual American International Motorcycle Expo (AIMExpo).

AIMExpo show date changed

First, the MIC has moved the show’s date from October to January.  This effectively means that there will not be an AIMExpo in 2020.  The new show dates will now be hosted in January with the 2021 show being held from January 21 – 23, 2021.  Once again, it will be held at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio.

AIMExpo will be an industry-only event

Second, and likely more importantly for the motorcycling public, the AIMExpo will no longer be open to the public.  It is becoming an industry-only event.  Commenting on the changes, Ms. Cinnamon Kernes, VP and General Manager of the MIC had this to say:

“Timing is everything,” said Cinnamon Kernes, vice president and general manager, MIC Events. “Transitioning to the first quarter has been part of a long-term strategic plan for AIMExpo, along with providing more focus on our core audience – dealers. These changes not only align the show with the ideal buying time for dealers and retailers, but also provide the perfect opportunity for brands to reconnect with dealers, kicking off what will be a pivotal year for the industry, additionally, this move to January opens the door to partner with a major distributor in a much more strategic and meaningful way.”

2021 AIMExpo

The 2021 version of AIMExpo is moving to January and will become a trade-only show. Image credit: MIC

Industry only

The MIC believes that a trade-only show will allow AIMExpo to:

“…concentrate on industry needs and education at a time when powersports needs it most.  Quality over quantity is necessary in the new trade show landscape.  With this new focus on retailers, the show will now take place over three days instead of four, saving exhibitors and attendees time and money.”

Reinforcing the motorcycle industry’s needs is a key component of MIC’s new philosophy:

“With all that’s happened recently, transitioning to Q1 makes sense now more than ever,” said Andre Albert, director of sales and marketing. “The show will align with the order-writing time of year; it will help alleviate financial burdens in 2020, and allows us to focus on the industry and its needs. This change in timing and focus allows brands to connect with the most engaged buyers looking for growth and success in 2021. We’re excited and looking forward to the evolution of AIMExpo – Together We Rise.”

What do you think?

The date and industry only changes are certainly significant.  What do you think of the MIC’s decision to make the AIMExpo a trade only show?  Will it benefit the industry and consumers?  Let us know in the comments below.

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