For local companies, CES provides useful home-show advantage

John Locher / AP

People look at an exhibit of LG OLED TV screens at CES International, Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019, in Las Vegas.

Between the mega corporations promoting the hottest trends in technology — like self-driving automobiles, 5G communications solutions and do-it-all robots — several Las Vegas small businesses are making contributions to CES this week.

Representatives of central valley-based IQ Tech LV demonstrated a variety of hand-held massage and fitness products at a small booth in the Las Vegas Convention Center’s South Hall on Monday in hopes of striking a big wholesale deal. Company CEO Cheyenne Fisher helped demonstrate the products in a style that resembled a kiosk at the Fremont Street Experience or Las Vegas outlet malls.

Fisher, who founded the company in 2016, said the $10,000 she spent on exhibition booths at the convention center and Sands Expo Hall would be worth the exposure to thousands of people passing by. Having CES in her hometown also allowed Fisher to save on transportation and setup costs, she said.

“It’s so much easier having it in Las Vegas than if we were to have to travel elsewhere,” Fisher said. “Being at CES is about the opportunity.”

The three-day convention, which continues through Thursday, will bring 180,000 attendees and 4,500 exhibitors. More important, it generates $264.2 million for the local economy, according to officials.

The annual electronics show has brought 4.6 million visitors with an estimated $5.4 billion impact on the local economy since the beginning here in 1978.

“The energy felt throughout Las Vegas during CES is incredible,” said Chris Meyer, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority's vice president of sales. “CES and the destination have grown together over the years, and we look forward to continuing that growth and partnership in the years to come."

Officials say the valley remains an ideal destination for CES thanks to the Strip’s tendency to display the latest-and-greatest for its visitors, in any industry. Sarah Brown, a spokeswoman for the show, said CES and Las Vegas is a partnership that’s “made to be” for the future, too.

“CES is about hype and innovation, and no place understands that concept like Las Vegas,” Brown said. “Coming back here is an easy choice for the show, because of Las Vegas’ shared beliefs with technology and our outlook on the future.”

It is held on 2.9 million square feet of convention space of at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Mandalay Bay, Venetian, Westgate and Sands and other Strip venues. This year’s event will draw executive speakers from Mercedes-Benz, Audi, LG, and Verizon, among other household names.