Emerald Announces Big Jump in CEDIA 2017 Attendance

Photo from CEDIA 2017

Show floor, CEDIA 2017

Find Out Who’s on Emerald’s CEDIA Show Advisory Board

Emerald Expositions, the new owner of the CEDIA tradeshow, announced this week that the CEDIA 2017 show had a significant jump in attendance. According to the exposition company, attendance jumped almost 7% from 18,750 last year to “more than 20,000 home tech professionals” this year. This announcement, normally released on the last day of the show, was held for 11-days by Emerald, Strata-gee was told, so they could perform deep data analysis.

Unfortunately, they chose to share very, very little of that data in this announcement. But more is promised.

See what Emerald has released so far about CEDIA 2017…




When we were told that Emerald was holding their announcement for 11-days so they could analyze the data, we were very hopeful that meant they would share more of the data. CEDIA, the previous owner, collected a lot of data, of which they shared very little. But occasionally they would share a data point or two, to illuminate some trend.

We’re pretty sure that Emerald has much more data than just the total attendance figure of “more than 20,000.” In fact, even the notoriously tight-lipped CEDIA shared total number of exhibitors and the number of new exhibitors. We reached out to Emerald to see if we can learn more of this data and spoke briefly with Brianna Morris, Marketing Manager with CEDIA Expo.

Continuing to Crunch Numbers

Morris told us that the company is continuing to crunch numbers and intends to release much more data from the show. However, she told us, it could be as much as six-to-eight weeks before they are prepared to do so. For the time being, all they’ve released so far (total attendance) is all they are prepared to discuss.

Chart of CEDIA attendance

This Strata-gee chart tracks the attendance at CEDIA shows since 2007, the high watermark for the event. The red line is a mathematically calculated trend line (linear curve) showing the long term trend

Beyond the total attendance figure, the only other information released by Emerald is that they had “record onsite sales for the next show.” This could be a little misleading, however, as exhibitors must sign up at the event for the next year, while at the show this year. Still, it’s fair to say that if this number is increased, then that is a positive sign.

Record Sign-Ups for Next Year



We have recently reported that our annual, non-scientific survey of exhibitors, indicated the most positive feedback that we had experienced in years. This result announced by Emerald seems to support that analysis.

Signing up for next year, perhaps not too surprisingly, is Lutron, Control4, SnapAV, Z-Wave Alliance, Nest, DISH, as well as more. Still, no sign that Crestron is returning. And we couldn’t help but notice that Sonos – the 800-lb gorilla of the industry – had essentially a non-booth this year. OK, they had a booth, but no display other than a few shipping boxes strewed around and mostly unmanned. Sonos had an offsite hotel suite where they showed products and met with dealers.

New Things for 2018

Photo of Emerald Exec Brianna Morris

Brianna Morris
Emerald Expositions

Most of Emerald’s official release was spent discussing the changes they would implement for CEDIA 2018. These changes include a Smart Stage where ongoing presentations will further engage attendees. They also will roll out Tech Bites, which are 5-minute presentation by exhibitors on their new items (on the Smart Stage). And finally, Tech Talks, more topical discussions (alé Ted Talks) also on the Smart Stage.

You can see much more detail on these as part of our interview of Brianna Morris at CEDIA 2017.

During our interview with Morris at CEDIA 2017, and again in the press release on the attendance figures, Emerald kept referring to “a select group of industry experts” who were working with Emerald in an advisory role to help them continue to improve the CEDIA show.

These experts are:

  • Jeremy Burkhardt, CEO, Origin Acoustics
  • Dave Donald, VP of Marketing, Origin Acoustics
  • Michael Bridwell, VP of Sales and Marketing, Screen Innovations
  • Frank Defilippis, National Sales Manager, DISH
  • John Marchionda, VP of Sales, SnapAV
  • Abby Hanlon, Marketing Communications Manager, SnapAV
  • Dennis Holzer, Executive Director, Powerhouse Alliance
  • Jim Garrett, Sr. Director, Product Strategy and Planning, Harman
  • Gene LaNois, Head of Professional Channel, NEST
  • Bryce Judd, SVP Worldwide Sales, Control4
  • Mitchell Klein, Execcutive Director, Z-Wave Alliance
  • Charlie Porritt, CEO, Russound
  • Tim Sinneave, Director of Barco Residential, Barco
  • Randy Sterns, CEO, D-Tools

Why the Big Jump?



We asked Morris if she had any perspective on why there was such a big jump in attendance this year, but she declined to speculate. Still new to the scene, Emerald seems anxious to engage in their own version of CEDIA. They’ll get their chance, CEDIA 2018 – again in San Diego – will be the first Emerald production of this event.

Learn more about Emerald Expositions by visiting: www.emeraldexpositions.com.


About Ted

A sales and marketing specialist - primarily in the technology industry - I've experienced a sort of "circle of life" in business. I've been a mass merchant retailer, a specialty retailer, a specialty manufacturer, a large volume manufacturer, a distributor, and even represented sales representatives. Now the owner of a marketing company that works with a variety of businesses on improving their strategic marketing and business development - I analyze issues from all angles to develop holistic solutions.

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