|New CPE format boosts attendance for Hershey show|
|Written by Jeremy Burns|
|Thursday, 30 January 2014 11:01 AM America/New_York|
Munce Group’s CPE tradeshow in Hershey, Pa., saw attendance grow considerably from last year’s levels, owing at least partially to a streamlined schedule. More than 200 attendees, including nearly 160 retailers, gathered Jan. 19-21 at the Hershey Lodge for a profitable time of fellowship, training and business.
With the training sessions moved to Jan. 19, a Sunday, a greater number of retailers were able to attend the prospective retailer training with Robbie Halstead of Kingdom Retail Solutions, as well as Bookstore Manager, Vacation Bible School curriculum and Bible training.
Updated sales-floor hours allowed the same amount of buying time as last year’s show, but with less time out of the store and office for retailers and suppliers.
Along with show standards like the author Personality Party, the Night of Worship featured author Paul E. Miller (Crossway), who spoke on the impact that changes in culture, church communities and nation have made to retail and how Christian retail has the opportunity to point believers and non-believers to a deeper relationship with Christ.
At Monday’s breakfast, Natalie Nikula of Compassion International introduced a new partnership with Munce stores, while Satish Kumar shared his testimony of growing up as a child sponsored through Compassion.
At the Monday evening banquet, Doug Anderson (Provident), solo artist and member of Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, shared stories and songs. Anderson’s “Drive to Retail” campaign was well-received by the stores, and retailers across the country benefitted by selling out of the premium autographed CD.
“Hats off to StowTown records, Carol Roundtree, Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, Provident Distribution and Doug Anderson for really putting the focus on independent Christian retailers,” said Kirk Blank, president of Munce Group and MTL Media. “Too often, this critical segment of retail goes overlooked. This promotion proved that the independent Christian stores associated with the Munce Group are willing and able to sell a large volume of products.”
Other guests featured were authors Davis Bunn (River North/Moody Publishers) and Jud Wilhite (FaithWords) and illusionist Harris III (Destiny Image).
Later this year, Munce plans to host a one-day CPE at AmericasMart Atlanta on July 9, and will return to Murfreesboro, Tenn., for a three-day show, Sept. 21-23.