From August 23-25 Las Vegas’s Mandalay Bay Convention Center was packed with pet industry professionals from around the world for SuperZoo, North America’s leading pet retail trade show. Produced by World Pet Association (WPA), SuperZoo 2022 welcomed more than 16,000 pet professionals, representing over 25 countries and all 50 states, to engage in new product introductions, expert-led education sessions and peer-to-peer networking events. The energetic 331,500 square foot show floor featured more than 1,000 exhibitors from every pet product category and 900+ products made their debut in SuperZoo’s sold-out New Product Showcase.
“As evidenced by this year’s attendance, SuperZoo continues to be the industry’s go-to trade show for the pet retail community–spanning one-door independent retailers to the biggest household names in retail,” said Vic Mason, president of WPA. “SuperZoo 2022 attracted high-quality decision makers and delivered a show floor filled with emerging products and grooming trends, a highly popular and successful live animal area, an education program packed with thought leaders and rich content offerings, and a fun-filled atmosphere for pet professionals to connect and network with their community. We are counting down the days until we can do it again in 2023.”
The 331,500 square foot SuperZoo show floor was buzzing from open to close, drawing nearly 10,000 of the most qualified pet industry retailers, buyers and decision-makers—including Target, Mud Bay, Chewy.com and more as they scoped out the latest products, newest tech and emerging trends. This year's event featured more than 1,000 exhibitors across the curated show floor areas Natural and Health, Specialty and Lifestyle, Farm and Feed, Aquatics, Reptiles and Small Animals, Groomers Marketplace, Emerging Brands and the New Product Showcase, including an impressive 262 first-time exhibitors and 72 emerging brands. Attendees and exhibitors alike expressed their overwhelming satisfaction at the display of innovation, buying opportunities and overall quality and diversity of exhibitors and retailers in attendance.
“As a company created born out of the pandemic, we didn’t know what to expect. We were blown away. The access to wholesalers, distributors and other brands to network with was incredible. SuperZoo was absolutely awesome,” said Peter Liu, co-founder of RIFRUF.
“SuperZoo is very professionally put together in a thoughtful way that enhanced the experience. In the live animals area, people are able to come up to see the animals, hold the animals, and it allows us as exhibitors to be interactive with potential customers,” said anonymous of Northwest Zoological Supply (live animals).
SuperZoo’s international attendance was strong, representing 25 countries and over 13% of SuperZoo’s 2022 total attendance. Canada, the United Kingdom, Columbia and Brazil were highly represented and surpassed 2019 attendance figures, while Asian market attendance continues to increase steadily post-pandemic.
“We are attending SuperZoo from Pakistan. As a new business, I did not know what to expect at our first tradeshow. Being selected as a winner in the New Product Showcase makes our brand an award-winning product, which helps with brand recognition and our marketing efforts. Because of SuperZoo there have been so many new opportunities; I encourage all entrepreneurs in pet to come,” said Ayesha Chundrigar, founder of TRIO Eco Friendly Pet Products, winner of the best accessory and gift category in the New Product Showcase.
A record-breaking 900 debut products were on display at SuperZoo’s sold-out New Product Showcase. On Tuesday, August 23, a panel of five industry experts selected first-place winners and runners-up in 10 different product categories, as well as one award for the Best New-to-Market Pet Product for 2022. This year’s first place winners were:
- 2022 Judges Choice – Best New-to-Market Pet Product: UNO Wearable Harness (Dinbeat)
- Dog: Licki Mat Keeper (Innovative Pet Products/Licki Mat)
- Cat: Catit Senses Mushroom Interactive Cat Toy (Hagen Group)
- Bird: Busy Balls & Songbird Balls (BioZyme Incorporated)
- Aquatic: Aqueon Stick Ems - Feeding Frenzy (Central Garden & Pet)
- Herptile: Zilla Rapid Sense Décor (Central Garden & Pet)
- Grooming: Trach Saver (All for Groomers)
- Farm and Feed: RECOVER (FlockLeader)
- Small Animal: Enriched Life 2022 (OxBow)
- Accessory and Gift: Trio Goods For a Cause (TRIO Eco Friendly Pet Products)
- Point of Purchase Displays: All Natural Rotating Treat Bar (Paws Gourmet Bakery)
- Sign-up for WPA365.org to see the full list of New Product Showcase award winners and stay in touch year-round.
“This was our first time at SuperZoo. It was great to be featured in the New Product Showcase, as it brought a lot of attention to our product and company. It boosted the number of buyers—both big and small—that we’ve been able to connect with, including those from Germany, Japan, The Netherlands, France and Korea. We’re excited that people are excited about our produc,!” said Simon Chun, co-founder of Jiby Dog Crew, runner-up for the best new dog product in the New Product Showcase.
SuperZoo’s customizable education lineup delivered 70+ seminars and trainings—led by nearly 30 industry thought leaders—to help pet professionals refine their retail strategies, master the latest grooming techniques and stay ahead of animal wellness trends. Following input from attendees, show organizers streamlined the 2022 education program, with sessions taking place Monday and Tuesday to allow for more time on the show floor to discover the newest pet products and innovations. This year’s education featured two specialty tracks—grooming and retail—and highly-attended 30-minute Free Show Floor Talks that covered consumer trends, technology, social media and influencer marketing, sales tactics and more.
“We’ve always heard that SuperZoo was the industry standard, but it’s our first time. Education is really what brought us here. We learned some good information that was really helpful for our business,” said Mark Winner, owner of WagPride Pet Boutiques.
World Pet Association announced that they have expanded their education partnership with Fetchfind to include IndiePet Retailers and manufacturer product trainings and is also working on the development of a FREE industry-wide product database that is backed by WPA and powered by NextPAW to help foster the ease of product information sharing.
With more than $35,000 in winnings at stake, SuperZoo’s grooming contests celebrated the creativity and talent of grooming professionals on the industry’s grandest stage. Awards were given in multiple divisions for each regular breed class, as well as nine special contests:
- Best Pet Stylist in Show: Lindsey Dicken, Fetching Canine
- Best All Around Pet Stylist in Show: Christie Henriksen, Uptown Pets
- Best First-Time Competitor in Show: Belen Chocolatl, Benos Pet Grooming
- Best International Pet Stylist in Show: Azareth Cantu, Hollywood Dogs
- Mixed Salon/Freestyle: Jackie Boulton, Mucky Pups
- The Wahl Clipper Classic: Deanna Bradley, Estrella Pet Grooming
- Creative Dog & Cat Styling: Alyssa Kasiba, Simply Diffurent
- All Breed Model Dog Challenge: Lindsey Pinson, A Cut Above Grooming Salon
- Super Jackpot: Nadia Bongelli, Doggieland
- For a full list of grooming contest award winners, visit WPA365.org.
WPA also recognized several pet retailers and industry leaders during the WPA Chairman’s Reception, which was held at the Skyfall Lounge in the Delano on Tuesday, August 23. Each year, WPA honors pet retailers and industry leaders for their achievements and contributions in helping make a difference in the industry and in pets’ lives. The awards included:
- WPA Pet Retailer Lifetime Achievement Award: Gary Hoeflich, owner and operator of Pet Supply Orange County
- WPA Pet Retailer Lifetime Multi Store Achievement Award: Ed Kunzelman, founder and chairman of Petland
- WPA Legislative Pawsitive Impact Award: Phil Gross, president of the United States Association of Reptile Keepers (USARK)
- WPA Hall of Fame Award: Doug Poindexter, past president of WPA
- WPA Lifetime Achievement Award: Elwyn Segrest, founder of Segrest Farms
- WPA Pawsitive Impact Award: Andy Schmidt, president of San Francisco Bay Brand (posthumously)
“On behalf of World Pet Association, we would like to thank all those who helped to make SuperZoo 2022 a complete success, including our 76 featured sponsors,” said Mason. The SuperZoo sponsorship program provides companies with recognition and promotional opportunities to the entire SuperZoo audience. World Pet Association would like to recognize the following sponsors: Doggyrade, Elanco Animal Health, ellePet by ElleVet Sciences, Hagen, HealthExtension, HPZ Pet Rover, Instinct, Purina, Ryan’s Pet Supplies, OL USA, Skout’s Honor. Vets Plus, Inc and ZippyPaws.
Pet professionals who are looking for additional ways to continue their SuperZoo experience can access WPA365 to discover a vibrant, on-demand community, marketplace and learning center. Exclusively for industry professionals, they’ll have the opportunity to find more products from top exhibitors, access exclusive education sessions and connect with passionate pros, reps, suppliers and other industry leaders.
SuperZoo 2023 will be shifting to new Wednesday through Friday dates, taking place August 16-18, 2023, with education August 15-16. For more information, visit www.SuperZoo.org.