Locksmiths, suppliers and security industry professionals from across the globe flocked to MLA Expo 2013 this month, with the event being announced as one of the biggest in its 30-year history.
Held at The International Centre in Telford from September 13 to September 15, MLA Expo 2013 attracted 77 exhibitors – a significant increase on the 64 exhibitors who attended the last MLA Expo, held in 2011.
Hosted by The Master Locksmiths Association (MLA), the UK’s largest trade exhibition for the locksmithing and security industry saw exhibitors and delegates showcase products and services, discuss industry trends, network and attend training courses on subjects including CCTV, Safe Lock Picking and Lock Related Standards.
The event was opened by Jim Maddan, National Chairman of the Neighbourhood and Home Watch Network, an official partner of The Master Locksmiths Association, and was sponsored by global businesses Abloy, Mul-T-Lock and Yale, together with ASSA ABLOY Security Solutions.
Dr Steffan George, development director for the MLA, said: “I’m delighted to say that MLA Expo 2013 has been one of the biggest and best yet.
“The International Centre proved again to be a superb venue and it was great to see so many people exchanging ideas, making new contacts, sharing knowledge and swapping business cards!
“There was a real ‘buzz’ in the hall and the event got off to a great start on Friday 13, which was particularly busy: we even had to lend one visitor a trolley because they had purchased so many products!
“The training provided at MLA Expo 2013 also proved hugely popular, with three safe-related courses selling out prior to the event.”
Commenting on the MLA Expo 2013, Pat Cook, managing director of Aldridge Security Ltd, said: “MLA Expo is a great opportunity for us to showcase our latest products and services to customers and the industry.
“Aldridge always enjoys exhibiting at the Expo as it’s a well-attended and very well organised show. Not only do we get the chance to see existing and potential customers, but also other suppliers, and it’s all under one roof. The 2013 show was one of the best yet!”
Steve Ross, managing director of Mul-T-Lock, stated: “MLA Expo will always be a highlight in the Mul-T-Lock calendar, to showcase our very latest electromechanical, mechanical and patented product solutions directly to our locksmith customers from across the UK and Ireland.
“This year was exceptionally successful, with existing and new dealers visiting our stand to explore different ways of working together. We’re looking forward to following up our list of exciting enquiries and the opportunities provided by the exhibition.”
Neil Sheane-Smith, commercial manager (security products) at M. Marcus Ltd, said: “We regularly attend MLA Expo and we’ve seen even more footfall and exhibitors at this year’s event. It has been very buoyant.”
Nigel Rose, managing director of Nigel Rose (MS) Ltd, commented: “We were incredibly busy and took more orders than at any previous show.”
Dan Johnson, UK sales for CLD Distribution, added: “This is the first time we’ve exhibited at MLA Expo and we’ve been extremely impressed by it, the event has been a real eye opener. It has been a fantastic place to make new contacts.”
A number of exhibitors were awarded prizes for their contributions to MLA Expo 2013, with Ronis Dom winning the prize for Best Stand, Aldridge Security triumphing in the Most Creative Stand category, and D&E Architectural Hardware Ltd winning the award for Best New Product for its Drumm Geminy Lock System.
Dr Steffan George concluded: “MLA Expo is a much anticipated event in the security industry calendar and the large number of exhibitors who attended this year is testimony to its ever increasing profile.
“It was also pleasing to see such a wide variety of exhibitors at the show with, for instance, website providers, corporate clothing companies and tool manufacturers all present along with lock and security-related firms.
“The feedback from this year’s event has been extremely positive, with a number of exhibitors even asking us to hold MLA Expo on an annual basis.
“I would like to say a big ‘thank you’ to everyone who attended and made it such a huge success.”