Explore, Learn, Get Inspired at the 2019 SEMA Show
By Ellen McKoy
On your mark, get set, go! Whether you’re a returning Showgoer or a first-timer, there’s no better place to explore the latest industry trends and products than the annual SEMA Show.
On your mark. Get set. Go! It’s time to grab your smartphone, comfy footwear and plan now to make the most of your SEMA Show experience. Whether you’re a returning Showgoer or a first-timer, there’s no better place to explore the possibilities. But what exactly can you expect to find?
As the premier trade venue for the automotive specialty-products industry, the SEMA Show is brimming with thousands of new products and a dizzying array of modified rides to spark take-home ideas and new-business opportunities. But the exhibit floor isn’t the only place to encounter new opportunities that can take your business to the next level.
Knowledge Is Power: Grow Your Skills and Business
World-class education to expand knowledge and skills is a hallmark of the Show. With more than 100 seminars on tap—the majority free to all Showgoers—the Show offers a once-a-year chance to learn from industry leaders and peers, hone new skills and prepare for the future while improving your businesses today.
SEMA Education covers a range of industry-focused and professional-development topics. Seminars are divided into several tracks, including advanced vehicle technology, business management, emerging markets, and collision repair. Other sessions are centered on online marketing, women-driven topics, sales and marketing, plus a new tire-centric interview stage, among others. Check the Show schedule for details.
Attendees also have a chance to snag limited-edition SEMA swag. Stop by The Quad—located on the Upper North Hall Concourse above the Grand Lobby, outside Room N251—to secure a Power User punch card. Attend any three education sessions, have the card hole-punched at the end of each seminar, and head to The Quad to collect SEMA swag, while supplies last. While there, inquire about what else SEMA education can do to advance your career and your business.
Membership Has Its Perks
There’s another good reason to spend time on the Upper North Hall Concourse: SEMA Central is also located upstairs from the Grand Lobby.
Take time to meet SEMA staff and learn about association resources. From the SEMA Garage, the SEMA Data Co-op and Membership Services to the Center for International Commerce and the full range of SEMA education offerings, discover how engagement can ignite your career and your business.
Current SEMA members will also find the welcome mat out at two Members Lounges, ideal spots to take a break from the Show, hold a quick meeting or grab something to eat. The Members Lounge–North is located adjacent to SEMA Central in Room N251. The Members Lounge–South is located at the east end of the Lower South Hall, Booth #46000.
There’s also a sweet bonus for SEMA members registered as buyers (retailers, restylers, warehouse distributors and jobbers). Preregistered member buyers will receive a special ribbon in the mail prior to the Show, allowing access to express taxi lines from the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC) on Tuesday through Thursday from 2:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m. and Friday from 2:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m. The ribbon also provides access to the Members Lounges. Member buyers can also pick up the ribbon at either of the Members Lounges. For details, visit SEMA Central or the Members Lounges.
Connect With Top Thinkers
One of the most rewarding aspects of attending the SEMA Show is the chance to engage and share experiences with likeminded professionals also eager to make new connections. And there are myriad networking opportunities hosted by SEMA councils and networks, both on and off the exhibit floor.
Here’s a rundown of daytime happenings:
Monday, November 4
- SEMA Businesswomen’s Network (SBN): SBN presents its eighth annual, women-only Gear-Up Girl networking event, 3:30 p.m.–5:00 p.m. in LVCC Room N264.
Tuesday, November 5
- Truck & Off-Road Alliance (TORA): Connect with TORA leadership and Showgoers for beer and conversation during Happy Hour, 4:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m., Booth #34185 in the Upper South Hall.
Wednesday, November 6
- Automotive Restoration Market Organization (ARMO): Rise early for ARMO’s membership meeting, 7:30 a.m.–9:00 a.m., Conference Rooms 7–9 at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino.
- Professional Restylers Organization (PRO): Join PRO members for beer and conversation during Happy Hour, 4:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m., Booth #13113 in the North Hall.
Thursday, November 7
- PRO: Link up with PRO members at the general membership meeting, 7:30 a.m.–9:00 a.m., Room N232 in the LVCC. Non-members welcome.
- Wheel & Tire Council (WTC): Enjoy Coffee & Conversation, hosted by WTC, 7:30 a.m.–9:00 a.m., inside the west entrance to the Global Tire Expo in the Lower South Hall.
- Emerging Trends & Technology Network (ETTN): ETTN presents its annual Vehicle Tech & Learn, a casual, roundtable event focused on tech trends, 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. at LVCC Room N261.
Join the SEMA Businesswomen’s Network (SBN) for Gear-Up Girl, a dynamic mixer that brings together generations of female professionals during this empowering networking event on Monday, November 4 at 3:30 p.m. in Room N264.
Council and Network Receptions
After a long day on the Show floor, after-hours events offer a welcome respite—a chance to kick back, grab a bite to eat, talk shop and share knowledge with colleagues and friends old and new at council and network receptions. Chime in, and join the fun!
Tuesday, November 5
- Network with restoration industry leaders at the ARMO Awards Reception, 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m., Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino.
- Connect with the restyling community at the 25th annual PRO Industry Awards Reception, poolside at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino, 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. Open to members and guests interested in joining PRO.
- Spend the evening with young professionals at the Young Executives Network (YEN) Reception, 5:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m. at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino.
- Gather with wheel and tire industry players at the WTC Awards Reception, poolside at the Renaissance Hotel from 5:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, November 6
- Join the Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) at the annual HRIA Awards Reception, 5:15 p.m.–8:30 p.m., Westgate Paradise Center. Companies may purchase reserved tables; proceeds benefit the SEMA Memorial Scholarship Fund.
- Attend the fifth annual SBN Reception, an evening of networking and camaraderie, 5:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m., Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino. All are welcome.
- Celebrate with the truck-accessory and off-road community at the TORA Awards Reception, 5:00 p.m.–7:00 p.m. outside South Hall. Support the Pinewood Derby competition; proceeds benefit SEMA Cares.
And there you have it. A Show filled with resources you won’t find anywhere else. So get ideas, get connected and get inspired. Seize what you learn, and take your business to the next level.
For a complete SEMA Show schedule, visit www.SEMAShow.com.