If the Design & Construction Week at KBIS/IBS Show in Orlando is any indication of the health of the kitchen & bath and construction industries, then 2017 will be a prosperous year. In fact, solid employment gains and rising household formations, single-family production will continue on a gradual, upward trajectory in 2017, according to economists speaking at the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) International Builders’ Show.
Show traffic was great, booths were large and vibrant, and the buzz was invaluable. Some trade show fun facts included: nearly 80,000 homebuilders, remodelers, developers, designers and their trade partners talked to suppliers and saw demonstrations during a show; the number of exhibitors grew from 1,400 to more than 1,500; and exhibit space grew from about 500,000 square feet in 2016 to 569,000 square feet this year.
The Show kicked with an “Omaha!” a presentation by former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning, and that energy continued to be reflected for the next three days. Exhibitors representing home technology, cloud-based construction management software and other innovative products and practices reported strong crowds.
Held in Las Vegas the past four years, Orlando was suffice in its ability to accommodate a show of this magnitude but honestly, despite conflicting reports, according to the dozens of participants that I spoke with, Las Vegas seemed to be the better choice based on booth hall proximity (halls are a bit closer). Case in point: this year’s show featured the KBIS portion of the show predominantly in one hall and the Builder’s portion in another hall. God forbid you had to cross the “bridge of death” to go to and from one hall to another. I say that jokingly in that you needed a good amount of time to get to point A to point B (15 minutes, I timed it). As an editor who makes booth appointments every half hour, it became increasingly difficult to honor those commitments based on the sheer size of the show. Again, not necessarily a bad thing at all, yet selfishly, it seemed that the show, at times, felt too big, if that makes any sense at all.
Nonetheless, how can one complain when the temps reached the mid to upper 70s during the week with very little to no rain in the forecast? This made the outdoor exhibits very accessible. The show will return to the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando again next year—January 9-11—and if I learned anything, bring a comfortable pair of shoes next time!
This week we will be featuring products that we saw up close at the show, so stay tuned!
In the meantime, NAHB named the winning products in its fifth annual Best of IBS Awards. This year’s Best of IBS Awards received over 400 entries. Decided by a panel of independent judges made up of attending reporters and building professionals, the awards were given in nine categories, plus an overall Best in Show award.
The winners were:
Best in Show Winner: AquaBoy® Pro II by Aquarius Brands
Best Kitchen Product: AquaBoy® Pro II by Aquarius Brands
Best Bath Product: Marble Attache by Daltile
Best Energy Efficient Product: Intelli-Balance 100 by Panasonic Eco Solutions North America
Best Green Building Product: The Greyter HOME by Greyter Water Systems
Best Home Technology Product: Biorev 360 by Biorev LLC
Best Indoor Living Product: Brinks Home Security Array Deadbolt by Hampton Products International
Best Outdoor Living Product: OUTDECO Decorative Panels by Outdeco USA LLC
Best Window and Door Product: MultiGlide Door by Andersen Windows Inc.
Most Innovative Building Product: Regal Aluminum Railing w/LED by Regal Ideas Inc.