From July 24 through 27, SuperZoo 2017 gathered together 10,057 pet retail, grooming and service industry professionals at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada.
SuperZoo is a major pet food industry trade expo and conference presented by World Pet Association (WPA) in North America. Following the implementation of a new buyer qualification process this year, SuperZoo exceeded attendance expectations.
WPA president announces retirement
The 2017 show marked the final event for WPA president Doug Poindexter, who announced his retirement after 27 years with the organization. In recognition of Poindexter’s status as the longest-serving executive in WPA history and his contributions to the pet industry, the WPA Board awarded him with WPA’s highest honor, the Matsui Award.
Poindexter will remain at the helm of WPA until the end of December 2017 and will serve in an as-needed capacity moving forward. While a replacement has not yet been identified, WPA is currently conducting a widespread search and anticipates announcing a successor in the fall.
“I’m extremely proud of how SuperZoo has grown over the course of my tenure with WPA,” Poindexter said in a press release. “I am proud that we have built a reputation for providing industry-leading education and access to products and trends to a growing audience of professionals who are as passionate about animals as we are at WPA.”
What was new this year at SuperZoo
Catering to SuperZoo’s growing global audience, the International Lounge added value for attendees from across the world by offering mobile app assistance and interpreting services in Spanish, Chinese, Mandarin and Korean. An Aquatic Lounge offered a dedicated area for the growing aquatics audience to view live demos from renowned aquascaper Oliver Knott. Additionally, a new series of free Animal Wellness & Retail talks on the show floor provided education for industry professionals.
SuperZoo’s educational offerings covered three days and included 81 education sessions, covering a full spectrum of topics and practices — from retail to grooming, animal wellness to boarding and pet services—while the expo’s show floor featured nearly 1,100 exhibitors showcasing thousands of products for animal lovers, including 850 new products never seen before their debut at SuperZoo.
The show floor also proved to be a winning atmosphere for this year’s contest winners, including:
- New Product Showcase Winners in eight categories
- #WPAGoodWorks Winners: First – Planet Dog, Second – Petmate, Third – K. Sutherland PR
In 2017, WPA has contributed US$1,225,000 million to support pet industry organizations through its WPA Good Works program. This amount includes all profits from SuperZoo 2017.
- Pet Product News’ Retailer of the Year: Mutts & Co
- Tom McLaughlin Super Jackpot Winner: Clayton Muniz, Pet Society
SuperZoo 2018 will be held earlier in the year to accommodate a growing exhibitor list with added show floor space and to allow for easier access to hotel rooms in the busy Las Vegas area by having 30 percent more rooms available on property. SuperZoo 2018 will be held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, June 26-28, with education June 25-27. Registration is expected to open by January 2018.