DALLAS–Bob Negen of Whizbang! Training has been tapped as the keynote speaker for Gourmet Catalog’s tenth annual member conference and vendor showcase, which will take place Jan. 9-10, 2013, coinciding with the Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market, Jan. 9-16, 2013. For independent gourmet retailer members, the event will again take place in AmericasMart’s Building 1 on the eighth floor.
“We are fortunate to have Bob Negen speak to the group and train Gourmet Catalog store members on key industry-relevant topics,” said Janis Johnson, founder and president of Gourmet Catalog. “Negen will focus on understanding strategies, tips and tricks to increase in-store sales while providing exceptional service.” Having Negen speak “is the perfect precursor to our vendor showcase on Jan. 10,” she said. “Excitement builds each year as we prepare for this important event. Getting together as a group to kick off a new year starts both store and vendor members on a progressive path.”
More than 200 members attend the two-day, members-only conference, which focuses on networking, new product introductions, sales demonstrations and learning opportunities. Highlights will include a full-day vendor showcase, a networking lunch, a buffet supper and a cocktail party at the Capital City Club. Taking place on Jan. 10, the vendor showcase will feature more than 150 top vendors and principals and industry leaders.
“The vendor showcase is an incredible opportunity to show new product to our best independents across the country,” said Heather Swerk, a sales manager at Chef’n. “We also gain valuable product feedback on how we can improve our assortment.”
Johnson added, “We look forward to bringing back our most important event for 2013. This is our chance to support the independent retailer, say thank you to the entire Gourmet Catalog membership and express our admiration for these incredibly strong entrepreneurs and the vendors who serve them.”