The first American Coatings Show and Conference was held from June 2-5 at the Charlotte Convention Center in North Carolina. According to event sponsors NPCA and Vincentz Network, this premier event was very successful. J. Andrew Doyle, President of the NPCA, said, “This has been an outstanding first event for the industry. The overall concept of the American Coatings Show had a very positive outcome. We had a lot of support throughout the entire process, which ultimately resulted in a resounding success.” The event sponsors chose NürnbergMesse as their partner for organizing the American Coatings Show. NürnbergMesse also puts together the European Coatings Show.

The trade show featured 332 exhibitors from 14 countries. Companies from abroad accounted for 24 percent of the exhibitors and, in addition to the United States, leading countries represented at the show included China, Germany, India, Canada, South Korea and Great Britain. Roughly 5,600 trade visitors (not including exhibitors) attended the show to view a comprehensive range of products on all aspects of coatings formulation. The booths were very nice, and covered 69,000 square feet of space.

The Congress, which featured more than 70 presentations, had 750 attendees - more than twice the attendance originally expected. The keynotes were outstanding and were packed to a standing-room-only crowd. Presentation of the first American Coatings Award during the conference recognized the industry’s best contribution. Consisting of a $2,500 cash prize and an attractive sculpture, the award went to James Rawlins and his team from the University of Southern Mississippi. The jury considered their paper, “Letting Nature Tackle the Dirty Work: The Future of Coatings Additives,” to be especially groundbreaking for the industry.

Our staff found the Charlotte Convention Center to be a very nice venue. It was easy to go back and forth from the show floor to the meeting rooms and press briefings. It was also within walking distance to several hotels and many of the downtown restaurants and pubs.

Overall, the atmosphere on the show floor was quite positive. Everyone is glad that the issue of an every-other-year show has been settled. Considering the short time that the sponsors had to pull this all together, and the price of fuel and rising costs of travel, the event was well attended. Plans for the 2010 ACS have not been finalized. Doyle did confirm that there would be an event in the spring of 2010, but commented that the date and venue would not be finalized for another six to eight weeks.

For a full write-up of the show, including comments from industry professionals and a variety of featured products and technologies, visit Also, see our Materials Watch and Products sections in this issue for additional products that were highlighted at the ACS.