CEIR Reports First Quarter of Exhibition Growth Since 2008

For the first time since the first quarter of 2008, the exhibition industry is growing, according to the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR), which yesterday released the third quarter results of its annual CEIR Index. 

The CEIR Index measures four exhibition industry metrics, including net square feet of exhibit space sold, which grew 5.2 percent in the third quarter of 2010; revenue, which grew 5.6 percent; the number of exhibiting companies, which grew 5.2 percent; and professional attendance, which fared best with a 6.6 percent increase.

Because all four metrics showed positive growth during the third quarter, CEIR said the industry's record-breaking streak of nine consecutive quarters of negative growth — the longest-running string of industry contraction since the seven consecutive quarters between 2001 and 2003, after Sept. 11 — has officially been broken.

"After a record-setting nine consecutive quarters of negative quarter-over-quarter performance, the third quarter of the 2010 CEIR Index reports all four metrics show improvement over the third quarter of 2009," said CEIR President and CEO Doug Ducate. "This is most welcome news and tends to confirm some of the anecdotal reports we have reviewed. It should be noted that the third quarter is historically the weakest of the four quarters and has had the greatest decline. The test will be to see if this positive trend continues into the fourth quarter of 2010 and then the all important first quarter of 2011."

For more information about the CEIR Index, including complete third quarter results, visit www.ceir.org.