Earlier this week I had the opportunity of uniting with some of SUU's ground school business students to attend the SEMA Show in Las Vegas. It was a lot of fun! Thank you SUU for the opportunity! SEMA is the world's premier automotive specialty products trade show, hosted at the Las Vegas Convention Center since 1977. This event draws in more than 130,000 attendees and over 60,000 buyers, from over 100 countries. If you like anything about the automotive aftermarket industry, this is a convention you want to be at. Not only does it offer over 500,000 square feet of automotive eye candy, it also provides a significant economic opportunity for Las Vegas and the surrounding areas.
While I was there, trying to keep the drool from falling out of my mouth, I wondered, what economic impact do events like SEMA have on the community? It turns out SEMA is anticipated to generate over $827 million in non-gaming revenue to the Las Vegas area by the end of its lease agreement, which ends in 2017. The local governments of Southern Nevada are very appreciative to have organizations like SEMA, hold their events in the area because the revenue helps provide jobs and build new roads, parks, and schools.
Large trade shows are not committed indefinitely to one location. What could cause SEMA to exit Las Vegas and move to a different geographical site? What would be the economic impact to Las Vegas if SEMA did leave? Would a slightly smaller competitor to SEMA, like AAPEX (who also holds their trade show in Las Vegas around the same time) have an increased demand or a decreased demand as a result? Would this create potential for new entrants as discussed in Chapter Seven of our text, Managerial Economics & Business Strategy, Baye, 8e.