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Chicago secures solar energy conference for 2013

Chicago announced recently it secured Solar Power International, the largest business-to-business solar energy conference and expo in North America, for 2013 at McCormick Place.

This marks a critical new piece of business. With more than 27,000 attendees, the show is expected to generate $38 million in estimated direct expenditures, signaling another milestone for the city’s reformed convention industry.

“Thanks to the many positive changes in our visitor industry, we are not only maintaining current business, but we are attracting new business to Chicago and Illinois,” said Tim Roby, president and CEO of the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau. “In addition to bringing millions in revenues and showcasing our great city to visitors all over the world, this show bolsters Chicago’s growing solar industry.”

SPI is North America’s largest solar event, drawing people from all over the globe who represent all segments of the solar value chain, including manufacturers, integrators and installers, large and small customers, architects and builders, and policymakers.

“We are thrilled to host this important new customer, and we are committed to ensuring its continued success in Chicago,” said Jim Reilly, trustee of the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, which owns and operates McCormick Place. “Chicago’s growing focus on sustainability and green initiatives, coupled with the premier facilities McCormick Place has to offer, make us the ideal host city for the Solar convention.”

“Chicago’s convention facilities were always ideal, but the reforms enacted this past spring were a game changer and a key factor in our decision to choose the city,” said Brian Tully, executive director of Solar Energy Trade Shows, LLC (SETS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) and Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the sponsors of SPI. “Chicago has been a world leader in sustainable practices and is now becoming a leader in renewable energy generation. Chicago is leading the way and helping to power a green, job creating economy. Those benefits are available to our community in such a favorable environment for our exhibitors and attendees.”



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