Gardner Business Media Unveils New Trade Show for Plastics Market

The Plastics Technology Expo (PTXPO) to launch in greater Chicago in March 2022, filling a void with an event in a vital market for plastics.


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Responding to a need expressed by processors, moldmakers and suppliers alike, Gardner Business Media Inc. and media brands Plastics Technology (PT), MoldMaking Technology (MMT) and Additive Manufacturing (AM) are launching a new trade show for the North American plastics processing market next year.

The Plastics Technology Expo (PTXPO) will debut March 29-31, 2022, at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, lllinois. After 2022, the show will be scheduled every spring, but will go dark during NPE years. PTXPO is positioned to complement the events portfolio already established by the three brands: the Molding Conference, the Extrusion Conference, Amerimold and the Additive Manufacturing Conference and Expo.

Gardner’s market intelligence team conducted several rounds of audience research before announcing the show rollout. In that research, 86% of subscribers to Plastics Technology or MoldMaking Technology magazine either agreed or strongly agreed that “a major U.S. plastics exhibition featuring the latest equipment and technology demonstrations” was essential to their professional development. More than 62% of survey respondents would attend a trade show once a year or more often, and fewer than 7% felt like they would attend a trade show only once every three years.

The show will be targeting a critical and vastly underserved region in plastics processing. Though the Midwest is the hub of plastics manufacturing, there has been no major event in the area since 2009. Not surprisingly, Gardner’s research revealed that the Chicagoland area was the preferred region in which to hold an event of this type.

Announcement of the show comes during boom times for plastics processing. “Our editorial team is a regular contact with processors, and time and again we hear about how busy they are,” notes Ryan Delahanty, publisher of the Plastics Technology and MoldMaking Technology brands. “This is supported by our regular monthly surveys of our subscribers done by our Gardner Intelligence market research team. March and April were both record-breaking months for plastics processors, and plans to invest in infrastructure, a resurgence in housing and a bounce back in automotive bode well for the future of our industry, as does the amazing things that processors are doing to make their products more sustainable.”

Delahanty also points to a need among suppliers of primary processing machinery of all kinds, auxiliary equipment, molds/tooling and materials to get actual face time again with customers and prospects. “Suppliers have responded remarkably to challenges imposed by the pandemic by holding virtual open houses, webinars, online customer training and the like,” Delahanty adds. “There will always be a place for those technologies, but at the same I think everyone recognizes that there has been a missing component in the sales-communication channel: the face-to-face component. PTXPO is aimed to fill that void.”

To make things easier for attendees to plan their show experience — and to give exhibitors the opportunity to hone in on customers and prospects — the exhibit will be organized by pavilions for major process and product categories, including an Amerimold pavilion for moldmakers. “We know our attendees’ time is valuable and we want to respect that by making it quick and efficient for them to connect with people that can help them improve their business,” says Allison Kline Miller, Gardner Business Media’s director of events.

In addition, Amerimold, the Molding Conference and the Extrusion Conference are being co-located Sept. 21-23, 2021, in Rosemont, Illinois.

PTXPO will also benefit from Gardner’s unique ability to reach the market and key prospects. Each month, PT, MMT and AM reach a combined 72,100+ manufacturing professionals through print magazines alone. With a combined e-newsletter audience of 73,000 and over 205,000 monthly website visitors, the three brand’s strong digital presence will also help the event succeed.