ATS moves 2013 Convention and Expo to Orlando, Fla.

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The American Truck Dealers announced that it is moving its 2013 Convention and Expo to Orlando, Fla., in February, in response to survey results of attendees from the past convention. The 2013 ATD convention originally was scheduled for Tampa next April. The move was made following the recommendation by the ATD leadership.

Orlando is the site of the 2013 National Automobile Dealers Association Convention and Expo. The two events will run simultaneously at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando from Feb. 8-11. The Peabody Hotel will serve as the meeting headquarters for both conventions.

“I’m very excited that the ATD and NADA conventions will take place once again in the same city and at the same time,” says ATD Chairman Dick Witcher, president of Minuteman Trucks in Walpole, Mass. “This is a value-added experience for the ATD membership, who can also participate in all of the NADA programs and activities.”

According to the survey, nearly 77 percent of respondents who attended the ATD convention in Las Vegas this past February indicated that they favored holding future ATD conventions in conjunction with NADA. Earlier this year, both conventions were held together for the first time.

“The overwhelming assessment by respondents of the survey was that the 2012 ATD convention was very successful and the way to move forward,” Witcher says. “The ability to hold two conventions at the same time, while maintaining a distinct flavor for ATD members in our traditional format, turned out to be hugely positive.”

All ATD activities – such as the general sessions, workshops, dealer franchise meetings and shopping the expo floor – will be held at the convention center. Witcher says there are several advantages of holding the NADA and ATD conventions at the same time.

“Commercial truck dealers can attend a broader array of workshops and meet with vendors who typically would not exhibit at the ATD convention,” he says. “There are so many common interests of car and truck dealers. We can both benefit from understanding each other’s public policy issues, dealership operations and business philosophies in a better way.”