Inaugural Racquet & Paddle Sports Conference Jan. 23-25 in Orlando

September 20, 2018

Multi-faceted event will incorporate the TIA’s TOM Conference and be co-located with PGA Merchandise Show.

NORWALK, Conn. (Sept. 20, 2018) – The inaugural Racquet & Paddle Sports Conference will be held Jan. 23-25, 2019, and co-located with the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, Fla. The multi-faceted tennis, racquet and paddle sports industry event will feature a hands-on product demo experience and opening welcome party at the USTA National Campus in Lake Nona; and a curated ONE2ONE buying summit, Tennis Owners & Managers (TOM) Conference and an exhibit pavilion of racquet, paddle and tennis vendors and organizations at the Orange County Convention Center.

The three-day Racquet & Paddle Sports Conference, organized by the Tennis Industry Association (TIA) and Reed Exhibitions, will bring together racquet sports professionals, industry leaders, emerging and bellwether brands all under one roof.

“This conference will be targeted to all facets of the tennis industry, including the racquet and paddle sports businesses,” says TIA Executive Director Jolyn de Boer. “We look forward to working with Reed Exhibitions and tapping into their proven expertise in developing powerful face-to-face business activations. Reed has helped to grow the PGA Show into the ultimate resource for the golf industry. Together, we have a tremendous opportunity to showcase the tennis industry and grow the business of tennis and racquet sports.”

A curated “ONE2ONE” buying summit, which will mutually match invited key buyers with emerging, new and existing tennis, racquet and paddle industry vendors, will be held Jan. 23 at the Orange County Convention Center (OCCC).

“Our ‘ONE2ONE’ events have been enormously successful for many years and consistently achieve high satisfaction and loyalty marks from buyers and vendors alike…it’s a win-win combination,” says Elizabeth Reed, Senior Director of Industry Development for Reed Exhibitions and Event Director for the Racquet & Paddle Sports Conference. “We look forward to hosting this platform for the tennis industry and matching key tennis retailers with manufacturers to showcase new product lines in an efficient, highly productive manner that also includes valuable time for peer networking.”

Following the summit, an evening hands-on product demo experience and opening welcome party will be held, Jan 23, at the state-of-the-art USTA National Campus in Lake Nona. The TIA’s annual Tennis Owners & Managers (TOM) Conference, named “Innovative Tennis Event of the Year” last year by Tennis Industry magazine, will feature an expanded focus and format and will be held daily, Jan. 23-25, at the OCCC. The conference format will include five educational tracks: Innovation & Technology; Facility Operations; Human Resources & Professional Services; Event Management & Hospitality; and Membership, Marketing & Promotions. Continuing education credits are available for members of the Professional Tennis Registry and U.S. Professional Tennis Association.

The fourth edition of the TIA’s Tennis Industry Innovation Challenge, a “Shark Tank”-like competition to find the most innovative tennis products and services, will be held during the TOM Conference, on Jan. 24 at the OCCC.

“The inaugural 2019 Racquet & Paddle Sports Conference will include an exhibit pavilion of curated racquet, paddle and tennis vendors and organizations, which will serve as a preview for the 2020 conference and show, where we plan to include more comprehensive exhibits and additional floor space,” says Reed.

The Racquet & Paddle Sports Conference, while co-located with the PGA Merchandise Show at the OCCC, will be a stand-alone event.

“Racquet and paddle sports are common amenities offered at country clubs, resorts and hotels,” says Reed. “A significant number of PGA Merchandise Show attendees representing golf and resort properties will have an interest in racquet sports offerings. Also, a number of current exhibitors at the PGA Merchandise Show have tennis apparel and equipment lines.”

The PGA Merchandise Show, called the “MAJOR” of Golf Business, draws more than 40,000 influential PGA Professionals, manufacturing executives, VIP retailers, international industry leaders and top-decision makers. More than 1,000 leading golf companies and brands participate in the PGA Show. The event also includes a comprehensive Education Conference, along with the world’s largest business-to-business Golf Demo Day. Nearly 1,000 media professionals from 25 countries annually attend the PGA Merchandise Show.

“Many natural synergies exist between the golf and tennis industries,” de Boer notes. “Having a major Racquet & Paddle Sports Conference co-located with the PGA Merchandise Show will capture these synergies, help us address common challenges, share ideas and best practices and help to drive business forward.”

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