Manufacturing and supply chain professionals converged on Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center last week as they came together for MODEX 2020 to find new equipment and technology solutions, gain knowledge and network with industry peers to solve common supply chain challenges.
Based on the information from the WHO, CDC and local authorities at the time with regard to COVID-19, the MODEX 2020 expo was held as scheduled March 9-12 with 894 exhibits covering 355,790 net square feet. Adding in show floor theaters and networking areas, the total gross footprint of the MODEX show floor was 900,000 square feet.
While registrations for MODEX totaled 33,460, representing an eight percent increase over MODEX 2018, actual attendance was 49% of that total due to COVID-19 travel restrictions which put MODEX 2020 on par with MODEX 2016 when it comes to attendance.
MODEX exhibitors expressed enthusiasm for the engagement they received from visitors who attended noting that they were serious buyers looking for solutions for their manufacturing and supply chain operations.
“I was pleasantly surprised and encouraged with the attendance given COVID-19 concerns,” said George Prest, MHI CEO. “More importantly, attendees had immediate needs for supply chain equipment and technologies and had buying plans in hand. We were very thankful for the 894 exhibitors that were on display. It says a lot about our industry and how we come together. The supply chain will be critically important during these challenging times.”
Because of the number of registered attendees who could not attend MODEX plans are under way to create a virtual MODEX 365 experience after the physical expo. This virtual complement of the event will be available in mid-April.
In the meantime, information on MODEX 2020 exhibitors and their solutions can be found at modexshow.com/directory.aspx?ref=attendees and MODEX show floor seminars can be viewed as podcasts at videos.mhi.org/category/modex-2020-podcast. MHIview also has posted a variety of videos from the show floor.
“Manufacturing and supply chain executives who were not able to attend need access to the solutions of MODEX exhibitors now more than ever,” said Daniel McKinnon, MHI EVP of Exhibitions. “We are excited to offer this virtual component of the show to provide that access to our visitors who could not attend due to travel restrictions. We encourage them to visit modexshow.com now and often to gain the information and resources they need to power their supply chain operations in the future.”
MODEX is the largest international expo of its kind held in North or South America.
MODEX 2020 Highlights
Attendees experienced a wide range of manufacturing, supply chain and transportation equipment and systems solutions and education. The dominant trend at MODEX surrounded digital supply chain solutions including automation, robotics, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, augmented reality, the Internet of Things and data analytics.
These trends were also evident in MODEX Supply Chain Conference sessions which included 140 educational seminars and four keynotes. On March 9, Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley spoke about her experiences in leadership and government. EMOTIVE’s Olivier Ouillier discussed how neurotechnology can improve supply chain workplace safety and productivity through data aggregation and analysis during the March 10 keynote.
On March 11, MHI’s George W. Prest and Deloitte’s Thomas Boykin released the findings of the 2020 MHI Annual Industry Report: Embracing the Digital Mindset: Connecting Data, Talent and Technology in Digital Supply Chains during a panel discussion with a keynote panel of industry thought leaders.
The March 11 afternoon keynote featured Archie and Peyton Manning who delighted the audience with funny and poignant accounts of their take on football, teamwork and leadership.
MODEX Industry Night with comedian Colin Jost was an exciting and entertaining networking event with over 1,200 attendees and exhibitors in attendance. The door prize for this event was a $30,000 Trip of a Lifetime that was won in a lucky draw by Margaret Papadelis of Yard Management Solutions.
During this event, MHI announced the winners of several awards including the 2020 MHI Innovation Awards during MODEX. The MHI Innovation Awards serve to educate and provide valuable insights on the latest manufacturing and supply chain innovative products and services. The winners were:
Best New Product:
- Agility Robotics for Digit
Best Innovation of an Existing Product:
- OPEX for Perfect Pick HD & Sure Sort Micro-Fulfillment Solution
Best IT Innovation:
- Yard Management Solutions for Yard Management Solutions
In addition to the MHI Innovation Awards, the MHI Young Professionals Network (YPN) honored recipients with its annual awards. John Rosenberger from The Raymond Corporation was awarded the 2020 MHI YPN Mentor Award and Lisa Richardson from Hytrol was awarded the 2020 MHI YPN Outstanding Young Professionals Award.
MODEX Student Days introduced 124 high school and university students and educators from 23 schools to career opportunities in material handling, supply chain and logistics through hands-on learning and networking with industry professionals. This year’s Student Days combined an interactive educational session with a dynamic guided tour of the MODEX show floor.
The next MHI-sponsored trade event will be ProMat 2021 held April 12-15 in Chicago’s McCormick Place. For more information on exhibiting at ProMat, or to register as an attendee, visit promatshow.com. The next MODEX will be held at the Georgia World Congress Center in March 28-31, 2022.