#CETW Goes On (But Loses Two Exhibitors)

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

While, at last report, Customer Technology Engagement World, New York, will take place next week as planned, we’re beginning to see some companies pulling out of the event.

We know that NEC Display Solutions and Peerless-AV have pulled out of the show in New York City, due to be held Nov. 7 and 8, in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.

Pierre Richer, president and CEO, NEC Display Solutions of America, made a formal statement earlier on Wednesday: “By now everyone is well aware of the tragedy that has affected the east coast including Manhattan. In the aftermath of the storm, many parts of the city including public transit will remain affected for many days and power outages will slowly be restored. Flying in and out of New York will remain difficult for the foreseeable future.

“Based on the ramifications of this disaster, NEC Display Solutions of America has decided to not be present next week at the CETW show at the Javits center in Manhattan.

“We understand you have previously received a letter from NEC Display Solutions inviting you to this event. We wanted to let you know we will let the people of New York focus on trying to get their lives back to normal.

“Our thoughts are with everyone who suffered in this tragedy. We wish everyone a speedy recovery.”

Peerless AV have also pulled out, tweeting the following: “Due to #HurricaneSandy, we have decided not to exhibit at #CETW in NYC next week. We wish everyone a safe and speedy recovery. #AVTweeps”

It appears that several other exhibitors are on the fence as to whether they should bother exhibiting – no doubt key factors influencing exhibitors includes :

  1. The vendor’s view of real potential attendance projections, not just CETW projections;
  2. The complications of getting staff and equipment on site and then up and running;
  3. The simple, overall logistics (flights, rooms, transportation in NYC, food, water, etc.) when the vendors (and the potential audience) arrive there.

As one (possible) exhibitor told us: “I hope it is a success, but only time will tell.”

We saw an email from David Drain, executive director, Digital Screenmedia Association, that said, “CETW Will Go On. While Hurricane Sandy has now come and gone, the effects are still being felt on the east coast. I’ve had several people ask me in the last two days whether CETW was still taking place next week. The answer is yes.”

There was no mention of the cruise planned by DSA in association with CETW. (Drain contacted us after this was written to say that the DSA Party @ CETW – dinner cruise aboard the Duchess – will still take place. World Yacht has confirmed the ships are fine and they are resuming dinner cruises Thursday night – Ed)

We understand that the Javits Center has reopened for business, and that CETW management is expecting that most if not all services in New York should be back by this weekend. But we expect that there must be great concern.

19 Responses to “#CETW Goes On (But Loses Two Exhibitors)”

  1. David Drain Says:

    The DSA Party @ CETW (dinner cruise aboard the Duchess) will still take place. World Yacht has confirmed the ships are fine and they are resuming dinner cruises tomorrow night.

  2. Lawrence Dvorchik Says:

    Gail, Adrian & others:

    Allow me to start by saying that I live in NJ, in the affected area, and am going through all of this personally as well. I hunkered down for the storm, am dealing with recovery, and am eager to understand exactly where everything stands as far as services for the NY/NJ/CT area, as many exhibitors and attendees also are. But living in the most affected state (NJ), within a stones throw of NYC, provides me far greater insight than you can have from the UK or Canada. Quite simply, you are relying on second hand accounts (and the media), while I am relying on my own experiences and those of my closest friends across the region living through the hurricane and aftereffects.

    Quite frankly, I think I am a more reliable source.

    FACTS (These are all facts from NYC and NY MTA, not “CETW’s perspective”)

    1. All things are a go with NYC.

    2. JFK and Newark airport are open, and LaGuardia airport will be opening at 7:00 am tomorrow.

    3. Subways open at 6 am tomorrow throughout the city (map located at http://www.mta.info/sites/default/files/pdf/HurricaneRecoveryMapOct312012.pdf)

    4. Javits Center is fully functional and along with the Road Runners Club and NYC are right now prepping for the NY Marathon this weekend.

    5. CETW NY 2012 pre-registered attendance is at an all-time high, and throughout the storm we continued to receive large numbers of registrations that continue.

    6. Travel and transit will be similar to what it always is in NY – bustling, busy, and above all else, business will continue to get done.

    I can tell you services are coming back, and by next week should be very close to normal. Shore/beach towns such as Atlantic City have been crushed, but for the rest of us, we are back at work today (and yesterday), and anticipating full power restoration over the next few days.

    While we find it unfortunate that NEC and Peerless have chosen to cancel their participation at this late date, 99% of the exhibitors have been contacted personally and will be out in full force to meet with attendees next week.

    The media (DailyDOOH included) loves drama and hype, but let me personally share that NYC has regrouped and merely 36 hours post storm, is not only open for business, but welcoming visitors from everywhere.

    Don’t believe the media hype – it’s generally not the reality the rest of us live in.

  3. Billy Elliot Says:

    Lawrence I doubt daily dooh will make a drama out of a crisis, two down and several more to go I would expect

  4. Stuart Armstrong Says:

    Lawrence Bravo! I live in NYC and I can tell you that the City is quickly getting back to normal operations. My apartment is just down the avenue from the Javits and everything looks just fine there. I just got into my office on 26th street with no issue (actually a bit easier than a normal weekday for me). Yes folks are suffering due to Sandy and many aspects of the City such as flooded subways will take a few more days to get back to normal, but if you want to really help NYC and the people here … DON’T pull your support. Come to CETW, spend your money and enjoy yourself. If you think staying away is a good thing, you don’t understand the attitude of us here in NY, NJ and CT.

  5. Stuart Armstrong Says:

    By the way, see you at the DSA Cruise and come by our booth #600, ComQi will be there!

  6. Billie Bob Thornton Says:

    No subway forced a friend of mine in NYC to walk 44 blocks home from work yesterday, as getting a cab is allegedly impossible .. I don’t see how things will be back to normal as quickly as the CETW organizers think

  7. LOVE NYC Says:

    Bille Bob as your name suggest, you are a moron. NYC is tough as tough is. Check the facts. Yesterday was Yesterday. Today has significantly changed as will tomorrow. Get a clue!

  8. Lawrence Dvorchik Says:

    Billie Bob:

    I’m not sure of your friend’s particular situation, but subway service resumed today. See the link I provided in my original comments to see what the subway grid looks like today, less than 72 hours after the storm.

    Follow me @ldvorchik or see the CETW feed on the site and you’ll get regular updates on what is going on with travel and transit for NY.

  9. George A. Borden Says:


    We are looking forward to the show. And more importantly looking forward to spending money in the local economy and do our part to assist. I would like to encourage others that may have doubts to reconsider. We appreciate the update and the efforts you and your team are making to ensure the most positive outcome for CETW 2012. Thank you!

  10. Signage Guy Says:

    With all due respect to Mr. Dvorchik and everybody who wants CETW to be a resounding success. Lets not spin. I have seen lots of tweets and comments from Mr. Dvorchik and others about how the subway is running and the airports are open and NYC is back baby and come on in. What I haven’t seen mentioned is the reality on the street that the Subway is only partially open, that the commute this morning was a complete disaster. all the airports are cancelling hundreds of flights each day, thousands of runners can’t get to NYC for the marathon. The steelers have to drive up on Sunday for the giants game, cause there isn’t a hotel that can accommodate them. millions still without power. Cabs are shutting down because there is no gasoline. So whether people decided to go or not, lets all put down the cool-aid and make decisions based on the reality in the street.

  11. Lawrence Dvorchik Says:

    Signage Guy:

    Again, you are looking at the state of affairs today. Given that we are less than 72 hours from the storm, it’s incredible the speed of recovery.

    Each day NYC recovers more, and systems and transportation are improved. By the weekend and the marathon, things will be light years of where they are today. Cabs will be back in full force, and gas readily accessible for all.

    Look at how amazing NYC is recovering and the speed of recovery. Claims were made that the subway would be down for weeks, yet 48 hours after the storm, al large portion of the subways were up and running. Take a look at the map link I provided and you will ee just how much is up and running. Is it all perfect? No, but if this had happened in almost any other city, recovery would not be this fast.

    Let’s praise NY and their efforts, not whine and be cynical at every step.

  12. Bill Lynch Says:

    The show is going to be held on Wednesday, November 7th. To make your decision based on the traffic conditions on November 1st and then make the claim that it’s the ‘reality on the street’ doesn’t make any sense.

    Most of the area has made phenomenal improvements in just two days. It’s expected most of the impacted area(Manhattan) will have electricity restored by Saturday.

    It should be noted that airlines are adding more flights each day and expect to be near normal by Monday.

    I’m flying up from Charlotte and looking forward to a good show.

  13. Bill Lynch Says:

    So far, the posters who have taken a negative position, Billie Bob and Signage Guy, have chosen to hide their identities.

    What is their motivation for discouraging people from attending CETW?

    Are they competitors?

  14. Jeremy Gavin Says:

    I have all the confidence in the world that Lawrence and his team will put on a great show next week at CETW and wish them the best of luck. As everyone who knows him, Lawrence is one of the hardest working guys in the business and does a great job of communicating with his attendees and exhibitors.

    New York has already begun its comeback and as long as you can get your flight in (and all airports are open) you’ll be able to find your way to Javits. So go, enjoy the show and all it allows you to learn and discover. We want to keep this industry going and expose it to more people – though other shows are larger, this show gets good attendees and often pulls from a different mix.

  15. Adrian J Cotterill, Editor-in-Chief Says:

    We moderate all comments, some people like to stay anonymous and that’s sometimes a good and sometimes a bad thing, with the venom that all those who have drunk Lawrence’s Kool-Aid pounced on Billie-Bob (err. LOVE NYC was also anonymous) for simply stating a fact – from someone, also like Lawrence and Stu, with feet on the ground, you can probably see why they wanted to remain hidden.

    I doubt any of Lawrence’s competitors wish his show harm.

  16. Bill Lynch Says:

    ‘Drunk Kool-Aid’??

    Adrian, what’s the point of putting that comment in here? Frankly, it’s unprofessional and wholly without merit. I am a business person and am not exhibiting at this show, only attending

    What’s your motivation for insulting me?

  17. tony yammine Says:

    IMTV .
    Tony Yammine
    Chaitman of the board.

    Still coming from Moscow to CETW , despite Hurricane Sandy..
    The show must go on , with my deep regrets for all victims.

  18. Lawrence Dvorchk Says:


    I appreciate your letting my postings go up verbatim to share with others.

    “Drink the Kool-Aid”? All of my comments are based on facts from Mayor Bloomberg, Governor Cuomo, MTA, Javits Center and other NYC repair groups. No Kool-Aid, just hard facts.

    “Nothing but the facts ma’am”

    We need to share these facts with the world, not kick up a false storm for the sake of readership or attendees. fact is, 99% of exhbitors will be there, and by next week, outside of seaport and battery park, 99% of NYC will be back. Metro North trains up and running, as are LIRR to bring commuters into NYC as normal. NJ remains the hardest hot, and for those of you reading this who do not know, it;s also where I live. So i can report with 100% fact what is going on, from a first hand account. Believe that!

    I will say it again – I am posting updates on my twitter acount (@ldvorchik), as well as on CETW, which appears on our website at http://www.cetworld.com. These start with #NYC Update, and come regularly as I know more from the outlets listed above

    I hope to see you all in NYC next week. All of our speakers are coming, and attendees should take advantage of the ability to be face to face in the only place in the world that brings together all of these leading experts and vast array of technology companies for customer engagement.

    Adrian, we’re sorry you won’t be joining us to see first-hand, although the invitation remains open.

  19. lawrene dvorchik Says:

    NYC Update:

    • Full service restored from end to end on the 4, 5, 6 in Brooklyn, Manhattan & The Bronx
    • The 7 Line has been restored between Flushing-Main St & 42 St-Times Square
    • 80% of subway service operating today
    • The Staten Island Railway resumed limited hourly service at 10 a.m. today. It should be back up to full service by Monday morning rush.
    • The A train to resume across East River as of Monday AM rush
    • Newark and JFK airports operating at normal operations
    • LGA opened Thursday and will be at normal operations by the end of the week
    • Metro North (CT) and LIRR (Long Island service resumed last week and should be fully operational by Monday (MTA)
    • NYC Subways will be almost fully operational by Sunday (Cuomo)
    • Staten Island Ferry Resumed service Friday
    • Atlantic City Casinos reopened Friday (Christie)
    • West Village to have power by midnight Friday (Assemblywoman Deborah Glick)
    • Power will be restored to all Manhattan by Sunday (Bloomberg)
    • NYC from 40th street and above has been at full capacity since Wednesday, almost completely unaffected

    I have been updating the CETW twitter feed on the site and my personal one (@ldvorchik) with NYC updates (#NYC Update)

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