CES to create an E3 like event?

by: John -
Now that E3 is officially dead, will the folks behind CES be the ones to create the next big gaming event? They're looking into that possiblity with an event in on the West Coast in the late spring of 2007. An advisory committee has been formed to generate feedback and to explore that possibility. Now, I went to my first CES this year and let me say I loved the event. It was huge but quiet at the same time. I could hear what everyone was saying in the open booths. If they can keep it like that then I am all for it. Oh yeah, hold it in Vegas as well.

CEA Forms Advisory Committee to Explore Gaming Event Options

ARLINGTON, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug. 10, 2006--The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA(R)), the owner and producer of the International CES(R), the world's largest consumer technology tradeshow, announced today that it is forming an advisory committee to solicit gaming industry feedback and explore the viability of a West Coast event in late spring 2007 focused on the gaming and entertainment marketplace.

CEA attracts 2,700 member companies and exhibitors to its International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) - a majority of whom are active in both the entertainment and gaming categories. In fact, more than 11 percent (17,800) of those who attended the 2006 International CES expressed specific interest in gaming and gaming products.

The International CES has a rich history with the category. It was the nation's largest gaming show until E3 was formed in 1994. In addition, the Microsoft Xbox and Sony PlayStation were both launched or previewed at CES.

"Since ESA decided to eliminate the E3 event in its known format, we have been deluged with inquiries on whether we could fill the tradeshow needs of smaller video entertainment companies," said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of CEA. "Our executive board met yesterday and unanimously asked staff to explore ways that we can help the gaming community."

Added Shapiro, "The Consumer Electronics Association believes that tradeshows are the most viable means for reaching a market as they serve smaller companies and entrepreneurs who need access to media, buyers and investors. Our board, association and events are committed to growing the industry - in fact nearly 80 percent of our members are companies with annual sales of under $10 million."

CEA executives, Karen Chupka, senior vice president of events and conferences, and Dan Cole, vice president of business development, will lead the advisory committee efforts. Companies that support the formation of this advisory committee include Auravision, Majesco Entertainment and NCsoft.

"We enjoy creating new marketing opportunities for this category. With the growth in on-line PC gaming and the rush to HD gaming, we see an opportunity to create a fresh event aimed at this market. We already have commitments from three companies in this area to provide us advice on a new event in late spring 2007," said Chupka.

"A major goal of this advisory committee is to generate gaming community feedback on how best to meet the needs of the industry," said Chupka. "As long as there is desire and commitment, we are ready to service this community and will begin looking at venues in Las Vegas and Los Angeles and for appropriate partners. Should the committee recommend we move forward, we would design an event which is consistent with CES quality."

Companies interested in participating in the advisory committee should contact Karen Chupka at kchupka@CE.org and Dan Cole at dcole@CE.org.

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