As this is going to print, it is now officially spring and our Trade shows in Canada are all completed. It was an interesting beginning to the 2016 rental season, with varied participation at the shows. I personally attended the Moncton show, the BC show and the Prairie show and enjoyed the hospitality and the atmosphere of each of the hosting locals. The movement of the Prairie show and the Alberta Trade Show Committee’s well run event bodes well for the next few years. Well done to all trade show committee’s; your volunteer efforts and your dedication to maintaining strong events year over year is paying off!!! I encourage each local to recognize the hard working volunteers in your organization and ensure they know their efforts are well recognized!
There was also a strong contingent of Canadians at the ARA 60th show this year in Atlanta. The ARA did a terrific job of providing highly valued learning sessions, excellent opportunities to exchange ideas and develop staff members. And a personal favorite for me was the CRA hosted hospitality event held at the Hard Rock Café. This was a tremendous meeting, social event to revisit old and new acquaintances.
From the business a consistent element of concern in general amongst the vendors as they are seeing the impact of a slowing economy in the attendance and to some degree the concerns of various members. As we discussed the ups and downs I was able to reflect and In general, I believe we are seeing stronger business outlook from rental operators who have a widely varied client base. In particular, those of you in Party, Tent and Event indicated a more bullish outlook. This is confirmed by the ARA business review where Canadian Party, Tent and Event business is expected to experience a modest 3-4% growth in 2016.
The first quarter is behind us now, and spring brings on the new projects. Keep your wits about you, and I wish you all the success to each of you and to your business teams.
President, Canadian Rental Association