The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) announced March 20 that the 2020 NAB Show, originally scheduled to be held in April in Las Vegas, will not be rescheduled this year, but instead will be replaced with a new digital offering called NAB Show Express, and an enhanced NAB Show New York in October.
“While we recognize that much of our show community is focused on other issues at the moment, we have heard from many of you over the last week who are eager for an update on our plans,” NAB president and CEO Gordon Smith wrote in a letter to the NAB community. “For that reason, we wanted to convey now that, in light of the current circumstances, it is impossible to hold a rescheduled 2020 NAB Show this year. We will instead proceed with a two-pronged approach to deliver as much value as possible under these circumstances to our exhibitors, partners, and the broadcast industry as a whole.”
Targeted for a launch in April, NAB Show Express will “provide a conduit for our exhibitors to share product information, announcements and demos, as well as deliver educational content from the original selection of programming slated for the live show in Las Vegas,” Smith wrote.
The online community will offer a virtual landing spot for both attendees and exhibitors to come together in a new way, he added.
For NAB Show New York, new programs and new partners will be announced, with exhibitors expressing interest in enhancing their involvement in what is usually a satellite event to NAB Show Las Vegas, Smith said. “NAB Show New York represents the best opportunity for companies to announce and showcase their latest innovations and comes at a perfect time for the industry to gather face-to-face to restart, refocus, and reengage as we move forward together,” he added.
In the week-plus since the announcement that the annual NAB Show was being at least delayed, the governor of Nevada ordered all nonessential business operations in the state closed, including all casino-resorts, and national authorities have urged Americans to telework as much as possible, to avoid the spread of the novel coronavirus.
“We’re also committed to being an active part of the solution to the current crisis in the months ahead,” Smith wrote. “Last week we launched a new public service announcement campaign on radio and television that will provide crucial information to keep communities safe. The PSAs are part of a comprehensive Coronavirus Response Toolkit that we have made available online to help broadcasters accurately cover the pandemic and prepare for the threat it poses to their staff, communities, and businesses,” Smith wrote.
“We’ll be doing more in the weeks to come to harness the power of our industry as a force for good in these difficult times.”
The 2021 NAB Show in Las Vegas is scheduled for April 11-14.