The new venue for the 19th edition of Expedite Expo, which was held July 19 and 20, did not disappoint.
After three years at the Lexington Center in Lexington, Ky., the only trade show geared exclusively to the expedited trucking industry moved to the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum in Ft. Wayne, Indiana,
And the results are in…
According to Kristy Lohre, event manager at On Time Media (the producers of Expedite Expo), the Expo’s attendance was up 22% from 2018.
“Every show has growing pains when we move to a new venue. But the move to Fort Wayne appears to have been a big positive for attendees and exhibitors. We’re very happy with the turnout,” says Lohre.
In case you weren’t able to make it, here are some of the highlights from Expedite Expo 2019.
Business Growth Education
On both days of the Expo from 8:00 am to 11:00 am, there was dedicated education before the show floor opened so that attendees could focus on taking advantage of the full slate of educational workshops, without being distracted by other events happening at the show.
The sessions, led by successful expediters and industry experts, fell into one of three categories:
Business Knowledge: Topics covered include: “Expedite Your Financial Well-Being,” “Q&A with Successful Expedite Drivers,” and “Practical Solutions to Improve Your Business” to offer attendees real-world tips, advice, and best practices on how to build a long-term, successful career in expedited trucking.
Truck Knowledge: Topics covered include: “Straight Talk on Buying a Truck,” “Fuel Efficiency and Technology Adoption,” and “Work with Your Truck and Not Against It” to help attendees get maximum performance, safety, and cost savings from their truck.
Industry Knowledge: Topics covered include: “Women in Trucking,” “Stay Metrics Driver Retention: Engage, Reward, and Keep Your Best Drivers,” and “Industry Outlook: The State of Expedited Trucking–and What the Future Holds” to give attendees new insights and ideas to help them navigate the upcoming opportunities and challenges that could impact their business.
The networking lunch roundtable sessions were full for both days. Attendees met with other expediters to join an hour-long group discussion facilitated by an industry veteran on a specific topic to help attendees be more successful in their business.
This year’s roundtable topics included:
- Van drivers knowledge share
- Alternative parking options
- Straight truck drivers knowledge share
- How to work with a fleet owner (from a driver’s perspective)
- Driver-to-driver knowledge share
- Percentage vs. flat-rate income.
Industry Outlook: The State of Expedited Trucking—and What the Future Holds
The 10 am special event on Day Two on “The Future of Expedited Trucking” was moderated by Sean Lyden with Expedite Now magazine and featured industry experts, such as John Elliott with Load One LLC, Ellen Voie with Women in Trucking, and Mike Abood with FedEx Custom Critical.
The panel addressed a packed house of owner-operators, drivers, fleet owners, and folks completely new to the industry to talk about some of the significant trends to watch that could directly impact their business.
Here are some of the highlights:
- Near-term industry forecast: Still “partly cloudy.” While there’s market uncertainty, and freight has been much slower compared to 2018, the business has begun to tick up recently. G
- Growth of women in the industry: The number is growing, but the biggest obstacle is building awareness that trucking is a viable and attractive career opportunity for women.
- The technology most likely to disrupt the industry: 3D printing. If automakers can print their own parts, this would reduce the need for expedited logistics in that market. But the costs associated with 3D printing must drop considerably before the technology would make a significant impact on the industry, which could be several years down the road.
Expo attendees got to check out the latest trucks and custom sleepers, with opportunities to get their questions answered by experts from Expediter Services (the Expedite Expo 2019 Title Sponsor), Stoops Freightliner-Quality Trailer, Fyda Freightliner, Premier Truck Group of Knoxville, Buckeye Western Star, Esparparts.com, and Bolt Custom Trucks.
The exhibit hall also enabled prospective owner-operators to meet directly with recruiters from a wide range of carriers—including Load One, FedEx Custom Critical, Panther Premium Logistics, Landstar, Premium Transportation Logistics, Tri-State Expedited, TST Expedited Services, V3 Transportation, among several others—to find the best fit for their business and lifestyle goals.
And attendees who weren’t ready to buy their own truck but still wanted to learn more about the business were able to meet with fleet owners who were looking to hire good, dependable drivers to operate their vehicles.
Team Run Smart Casino Night
But the Expo wasn’t all business; there were plenty of opportunities to kick back and have fun, as well. For example, on the first night of the Expo, there was Casino Night, sponsored by Freightliner’s Team Run Smart, where hundreds of owner-operators, fleet owners, drivers, motor carriers, and vendors tried their hand at Blackjack, Roulette, Craps and Texas Hold’Em—all on the house. This event offered a real casino experience, without the financial risk but with a whole lot of upside.
Expediter of the Year Award
This year’s Expo also delivered a new Expediter of the Year award winner: Lisa Morway with V3 Transportation.
Morway was selected among a strong field of finalists that included Vanessa Schroeder with DKP Express and Hyfield Trucking’s Frank and Stephanie Rebelo (who you know as “The Trucking Couple” on Youtube).
A driver for V3 Transportation, Morway was nominated by several people including V3’s chief operating officer Paul Ratcliff, who wrote: “Lisa is just the type of person who does indeed go the extra mile to help those drivers in need. From giving away shower credits to helping folks wanting to know more about how to best position themselves for freight opportunities, Lisa’s generosity crosses all borders, and she sets a bar that everyone at V3 feels is unparalleled in this industry.”
The Bottom Line
Says Monte Stetler, president at On Time Media, “We’d like to thank our sponsors and exhibitors who make this show possible. It’s because of their support that we can offer a valuable—yet free—educational and networking event for drivers, owner-operators, fleet owners, and the local community. It’s an honor to host this annual event for our industry, and we’re looking forward to Expedite Expo 2019!”
Save the Date for Expedite Expo 2020!
So, when will Expo be next year? Mark your calendar for July 17 and 18, 2020, at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum in Ft. Wayne, Indiana.