In case you missed it, this year’s National Hardware Show® proved to be one of the best yet.
Going back to the popular Show layout of years past, the 2016 National Hardware Show once again resided in the Central and North halls of the Las Vegas Convention Center, as well as the Silver Lot for Tailgate, Backyard & BBQ. The North American Retail Hardware Association (NRHA) Village relocated back to the central lobby location, making it more convenient for Show-goers to attend programs, and several specialty areas (including New Product Launch; the Lawn, Garden & Outdoor Living Awards display; Featured Product Gallery and Inventors Spotlight, among other highlighted zones) could be found throughout the venue.
Informational programs and award ceremonies were some of the highlights of the Show.
The NRHA Village Stage was abuzz with multiple educational seminars, and one of the first to start the Show was “Succeeding in Spite of Wal-mart: Understanding ‘The Wal-Mart Effect’ and Using it to Your Advantage,” by keynote speaker Charles Fishman, who wrote “The Wal-Mart Effect.” The seminar was attended by a packed audience. An in-depth review on Walmart can be found in the May 2016 issue of Hardware Retailing magazine at http://www.hardwareretailing.com/360-view-walmart/. Additional seminars included discussions on how technology is affecting retail business, from mobile phone use to pay for merchandise and comparison shop, to cyber-security issues that affect both retailers and consumers, as well as how economic recovery is affecting the recovery within the home improvement industry.
In addition to the NRHA Village Stage, the Inventors Spotlight area also ran informative programs, primarily geared toward inventors and distributors looking for the newest products. These included the QVC Product Search Panel, a U.S. Patent Office discussion, the Grommet Product Discovery forum and presentations by Warren Tuttle (“Licensing vs. Going Alone—Options for Taking Products to Market”), and Boardwalk Brands Lindsey Brooks (“Lifting with Lean Product Design”).
Focus is also placed on independent retailers, and not only are many of the Village Stage programs geared toward the retailer, but NRHA also runs two awards ceremonies, The Industry’s Top Guns and Young Retailer of the Year, that recognize the success, leadership, innovative retailing and community participation of those in the hardware and home improvement industry.
There were also several other award ceremonies that took place during the Show, including:
- Introduction of the Packaging and Merchandising Awards (PMAs)
- American Manufacturing Awards, presented by Made in USA and GBQ Partners
- Game Ball Awards, presented by Tailgater Magazine
- 50 Campfires—The Camping Authority Awards
- Lawn, Garden, & Outdoor Living Awards presented by Lawn & Garden Retailer
- Homewares Awards, presented by HomeWorld® Business
- New Product Launch Awards, presented by Amazon
- New Product World Awards, presented by DIY Network
It was the 50th year for the Retailers’ Choice Awards, a fun and entertaining program presented by Hardware Retailing magazine. Independent retailer judges walk the Show floor and select products new and innovative products they find.
This year’s show had nearly 3,000 exhibitors showcasing thousands of products in 15 categories, including Made In USA, Energy Efficient, Eco Friendly and Emergency Preparedness & Disaster Recovery.
Among the products showcased were several award winners, including the following:
Homewares Awards, presented by HomeWorld® Business:
Gold: The Ultimate Grab-It Gadget by Northern Response International
Silver: Pizza Oven Box by BakerStone International
Bronze: Cord Buddy by Cord Buddy, Inc.
Honorable Mention: LoveHandle Smartphone Grips by DMD Products
Lawn, Garden, and Outdoor Living Awards, presented by Lawn & Garden Retailer:
Gold: 5.0 Gallon SureCan by SureCan Incorporated
Silver: Earth Talon Fiberglass Shovel by ERA Group
Bronze: Zero-G Water House by Teknor Apex Company
Honorable Mention: Bird Photo Booth by Lovett Lab Inc.
50 Campfires – The Camping Authority Awards
Essentials Award: QuickFire
Editor’s Top Choice: GoSun Stove
Gameball Awards, presented by Tailgater Magazine
Best Tailgate Concept: Instagate
Best Innovative Product: CampMaid
Best marketing Concept: FireDisc Grills
Best New Product: Elevate Grill
Best Overall Product: Big Kat Buggy
American Manufacturing Awards, presented by Made in America and GBQ Partners
Best Packaging: Herb Growing Kit by Walters Seed Company
Best On-Site Patriotic Marketing: Extension Poles by Mr. LongArm
Best New Product: Dura Tie by Garris Brands LLC
New Product Launch Awards, presented by Amazon
Gold: ScotchBlue Platinum Painters’ Tape by 3M Consumer Business Group
Silver: Clingless Curtain Keeper by Inventor Lady
Bronze: IQ2000 by Generac Power Systems
Honorable Mention: Flood Alert Boom Tube by Flood Avert
New Product World Awards, presented by DIY Network
Aesthetics: Trip Lit by Alkilu Enterprises
Differentiation/Uniqueness: The Tool Hanger by Hansen Global, Inc.
Fills Consumer Need: Dura Tie by Garris Brands, LLC
Overall Value: Speed Cinch by Speed Cinch
Packaging/Merchandising Support: Firemizer by Microtex Products Inc.
Retailers’ Choice Awards, presented by Hardware Retailing magazine
- Big Kat Buggy by Big Kat Buggy
- The Coolest Cooler by Coolest LLC
- GreaseX by ITW Global Brands
- Ice Shoot by EK Ekcessories
- Not a Lock Dummy Lock by EK Ekcessories
- Comfort-Tech Grip Wrap by Sims Vibration Laboratory
- ShooAway by ShooAway USA
- Stake a Statement by My Yard Card®
- Hammerstop Technology Line Hoses by Danco
- BinTRACKS by Hyperlily LLC
- Heat Storm EnergyWise Solutions
- LoveHandle Smart Products by DMD Products
- Erase-A-Hole by Intromark Inc.
- Speed Cinch, Inc (Line of Products)
- UpCart from TriFold, LLC
- Wheel Chock and Tie Down Strap Kit by Erickson Manufacturing
- Afterglow by Echo Valley
- Trigger-start Torch Hose Kit from BernzOmatic
- Spin Chill and Chill Puck by Spin Chill
- Cheers Sunglasses by Cheers Sunglasses LLC
- Worx® Switchdriver™ by Positec
- The Amazing Rake by Potwheelz
- Burnie All Wood Self Burning Grill by Burnie Grill
- The Eagle EA-2000 Compressor by Wood Industries Inc.
- Stump Chunks by StumpChunks LLC
- Step-On-It Dust Pan by Butler Home Products
- Stir Whip™ from Hyde®
- The LED Emergency Bulb by The NCC
- Chateau Spill® by The Grommet Wholesale
- ‘Snot Tape by Snot Co.
- Wheelies™ Tractor Wheel Covers by Good Vibrations
- Bug Protector™ by Protector Products Companies
- Re-Grip by Preval™
- Blazer® Wireless Control Module from Midwest Air Technologies
Celebrity sightings happen frequently at NHS, and this year was no exception. A list of personalities at this year’s show include:
- Nick Federoff, host of “Things Green” on PBS, The Green Things Garden Minute, and Nick Federoff on Gardening, a 2-hour radio gardening show.
- Bob Vila, TV personality and DIY expert, launching new product line with Viatek Consumer Products Group
- Brandy Flores, model, actress and race car driver, and actor Lorenzo Lamas, celebrity guests of Excalibur Cleaning Supplies
- Marc Portney of “All American Makers,” at the QuickFire booth
- Les Stroud, host of “Survivorman,” accompanying T-Rex Tape