Christian Retailing

RBTE 'a great show' Print Email
Written by Eric Tiansay   
Thursday, 09 June 2011 03:00 PM America/New_York

Organizers of the Religious Booksellers Trade Exhibit (RBTE) convention reported a good turnout among retailers and steady sales for vendors for the 20th annual gathering, held June 1-3 [started May 31, according to] at the Pheasant Run Resort in the Chicago suburb of St. Charles, Ill.

Like last year, RBTE drew more than 200 book and gift buyers and 100-plus exhibitors. Total attendance was 520—down from last year's 550 attendees, organizers said.

Evangelical suppliers who exhibited at RBTE included Baker Publishing Group, InterVarsity Press, Kregel Publications and Thomas Nelson.

Noelle Pedersen—manager of Lion Hudson Distribution, whose products are distributed to the North American religious market by Kregel Publications—told Christian Retailing that RBTE was "a great show."

"The booksellers I talked to were all doing well," she said. "Every year the goal is to reach new stores that haven't ordered directly from Kregel before. ... The number of orders compared to last year was very slightly down. However, the sales were stronger this year."

Baker Publishing Group Senior Director of Marketing Bobbi Jo Heyboer said that orders were strong the first day. RBTE allowed Baker to interact with key liturgical booksellers, she said. Additionally, it was "a useful event for meeting with rights and media partners."