Kansas City, MO — On March 20-21, the Business Technology Association’s (BTA; www.bta.org) Southeast districthosted its annual Winter Break event at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa in Orlando, Florida. The educational and networking eventbroke attendance records, becoming the most well attended Winter Break to date, with more than 100 registrants.
“By design, BTA’s district events are smaller in nature than other industry events, providing for unsurpassed one-on-one time for dealers to connect with one another and exhibiting sponsors,” said Brent Hoskins, executive director, BTA. “While this was true at this year’s Winter Break as well, we were very pleased with the record-breaking number of registrants and the positive response we received onsite from attendees. The great venue, educational session lineup and networking opportunities proved to be ideal for dealers seeking to gain insight and guidance to take their dealerships to new heights.”
Winter Break featured a keynote session dealer panel, seven educational sessions presented by industry leaders and a special, inspirational presentation by John O’Leary of Rising Above. Networking opportunities included a welcoming reception and a trip to one of the Disney theme parks of the attendees’ choice.
For the first time, International Business Products Inc. (IBPI) held its Annual and Regional Meeting in conjunction with the Winter Break event. “Developing any meeting for IBPI requires that our member dealers and vendors must benefit from the event,” said Randy Horshok, executive director, IBPI. “Our 2015 meeting in Orlando has generated extremely positive comments from our members and vendors, along with praise for the experiences and ideas they took home. There were quite a few ingredients leading to these complimentary remarks: the time of year, the location at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort, the discounted costs and the opportunity to benefit from the BTA Winter Break. The synergy of the IBPI and BTA events is a win-win for everyone.”
Comments regarding the value of the event from attendees onsite were also positive. “Overall, I think it was a great event,” said Jeff Gau, CEO of Marco, St. Cloud, Minnesota, at the conclusion of the first day of the event. “If somebody didn’t come here and leave with a little bit more knowledge about how to grow their business, how to enter a new market or how to enter a new business unit with managed services, then I think they probably weren’t paying attention.”
Stephen Klatt, president of Advanced Imaging Solutions Inc., South Bend, Indiana, shared a similar observation onsite. “I come to build camaraderie with the other vendors and dealers, learning from them and sharing my best practices; [there is value in] being a part of a bigger organization,” he said. “You can try to get that information on your own, but if you’re here, you can absorb it all in one place and take away quite a bit of very valuable information.”
The Winter Breakexhibiting sponsors were: Balboa Capital, BEI Services, Buyers Lab, Carolina Wholesale, Compass Sales Solutions, Crawford Thomas, Densi, Digitek, ECi e-automate, ECi FMAudit, Epson, ESP/SurgeX, EverBank, Evolved Office, Global Printer Services, GreatAmerica Financial Services, HP (March 20 lunch & March 21 breakfast sponsor), Hytec, Image Star, Impression Solutions, Innovolt, Katun (March 20 breakfast sponsor), LMI, Muratec, NA Trading and Technology, OKI, PHSI, Polek & Polek (March 20 special presentation sponsor), Print Audit (March 20-21 breaks sponsor), Q2, Samsung, ScanSource 3D, Smart Power Systems, Supplies Network, SYNNEX, Toshiba, Wells Fargo, West Point Products and Xerox (March 20 reception sponsor).
The next BTA district event, Cruise to Success, hosted by BTA Mid-America, will be held May 7-8 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. For more information or to register, visit www.bta.org/BTAMidAmericaEvent.