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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Reducing the Cost to Participate in SEMICONS

The global recession and semiconductor industry shutdown has created enormous pressure on SEMICON exhibitors. Virtually every mid-to-large SEMI member has announced layoffs and is experiencing severe financial crisis.

In response to these pressures, SEMI is working hard on aggressive cost cutting and value-enhancements to our shows. Because booth space costs often represent only one dollar in four of the total cost to exhibit, effective show management requires us to work closely (beg, negotiate, hammer, etc.) contractors, facilities, hotels, shipping firms—even exhibit managers—to affect the total cost of participating in SEMI events. For every event in every region, we are looking at across-the-board solutions to reduce exhibiting cost, including making the necessary improvements to our own cost structure to enable stable, if not reduced booth space prices, for 2010 and beyond.

Here are some of the some of the current efforts to reduce costs to exhibitors:

• Renegotiated service contractor and subcontractors contract at SEMICON West resulting in up to 10% savings for many exhibitors
• Moved SEMICON Europa location to Dresden for lower exhibitor costs and higher quality attendance. Service contractor costs have been reduced by as much 50% and hotel rates 30% less
• Developed and introduced low cost turnkey exhibit booth, and executive meeting suite options for West, Europa, China and Singapore
• Conducted exhibitor training sessions on lower cost exhibiting for SEMICON West
• Added new buyers through SOLARCON co-located events in China, Korea and Singapore. Exploring other co-location and partnership options to add audience value and reduce costs
• Went out for bid on international shipping and selected new vendor with lower rates
• Aggressively renegotiating facility contracts for 2010 in West, Singapore, Japan, Taiwan and China

I promise you increased efforts on cost reduction will continue. I firmly believe that the global economic crisis is particularly affecting the trade show industry, shifting the balance of power back to show organizers like SEMI. In a buyers market, we should be able to work with other organizers to pull back labor rates, contractor services, hotel rates, and facilities costs. We plan to actively partnering with other shows and industries to see if something can be collectively done to pull back the total cost to exhibit in every region where we operate.

Great expositions are the product of great collaborations between exhibitors and show managers, and during this time, it is imperative that SEMI wield as much power, influence and ingenuity to help our member exhibitors. As an association, we take our role as representative for exhibitors very seriously and we are working night and day to make SEMICONS the best possible value they can be.

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