The Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) has finally pulled the plug on the 2020 edition of the aftermarket industry trade show in Las Vegas, announcing that this year’s event would not go ahead.
The cancellation is reported as the first in the event’s 53-year history.
Until recently, plans were in place for the show to still go ahead on its original 3-6 November dates, with mandatory face masks, temperature checks, designated entrance/exit areas, pedestrian traffic limits and various other measures. However, at an event that attracts more than 150,000 people annually, even the most rigid social distancing and public safety measures would essentially be impossible to enforce. This, compounded by the ongoing severity of the coronavirus pandemic in the USA, ultimately made cancellation the only realistic option.
Ahead of the cancellation being made official in a statement released on 5 August, a virtual show was being mooted (in response to a survey sent to prospective attendees), with the Association “working with industry members to determine interest levels on specific alternatives,” but in the same statement, SEMA President and CEO Craig Kersting suggests no such online-only event would go ahead.
"The SEMA Show is committed to furthering businesses in the automotive specialty equipment market, and to providing manufacturers and buyers with the best opportunity to connect, promote new products and discover new trends," said Kersting.
"We appreciate the spirit, hard work and innovation our industry puts into the SEMA Show each year. While we are disappointed circumstances prevent us from hosting the Show in November, we look forward to getting everyone together in 2021 for another outstanding event."
SEMA says all exhibitor deposits and attendee registration fees will be refunded.