|submitted by Julie Franks, MDG Agency
SUPERZOO, North America’s premier pet retail trade show, has concluded its highly anticipated 2023 event, leaving a significant and lasting impression on the $100 billion pet industry. From August 16-18, the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas welcomed nearly 18,000 pet professionals — a 10% increase over 2022 — from 84 countries and 50 states. Among them were over 10,000 key decision-makers, representing a 6% increase from the previous year. The sold-out event showcased cutting-edge products, industry-leading education, captivating grooming contests and unparalleled networking opportunities, plus the launch of a new logo that captures the essence of SUPERZOO.
“This year’s SUPERZOO surpassed our highest expectations, reaffirming its status as the definitive event for the pet retail community,” said Mike Karsting, senior vice president for World Pet Association. “The enthusiasm displayed by attendees, exhibitors and industry leaders alike was truly remarkable. We are thrilled to have fostered an environment where connections were forged, ideas were shared and the pet industry’s vibrant future was charted.”
The expansive show floor, covering 330,000 square feet, was a testament to SUPERZOO’s unmatched status as the industry’s most-beloved gathering. With over 1,100 exhibitors, the curated show floor was designed to provide a personalized experience, catering to the individual interests of attendees. This dynamic space facilitated an in-depth exploration of the latest pet industry trends, featuring specialized areas including the New Product Showcase, Emerging Brands, Natural and Health, Specialty and Lifestyle, Farm and Feed, Aquatics, Birds, Reptiles and Small Animals, Groomer’s Marketplace, and the International Pavilion.
SUPERZOO 2023 experienced a valuable transformation empowered by a comprehensive data audit that ensured the presence of qualified retail buyers. This strategic approach yielded an impressive gathering of over 10,000 highly qualified pet industry retailers, buyers and decision-makers, surpassing any other pet trade show in North America by 33%. The 2023 event witnessed a diverse array of retailers, ranging from industry giants like Woof Gang Bakery, Petland, Pet Supplies Plus, Petco, PetSmart, Kahoot’s, Chewy, and Hollywood Feed, to thriving independent businesses. This inclusive representation underscores SUPERZOO’s position as the premier platform for industry convergence, catering to a range of established leaders, emerging retailers and trusted local favorites.
Highlighting the vibrant atmosphere of SUPERZOO 2023, both attendees and exhibitors shared their enthusiastic perspectives:
- “We love coming to SUPERZOO because we get to meet our customers and our buyers, and get a pulse on what’s happening within the industry. We spend a lot of time investing in and talking to our customers and potential buyers so we can continue to innovate our products to meet their needs.” — Paul Semanski, Marketing Lead, N-Gage Brand LLC (exhibitor)
- “There are so many things happening in the pet industry and SUPERZOO focuses on what’s new. I’m here to meet new people — distributors, independent pet retailers, you name it everybody’s here so it is a can’t-miss show.” — Shristi Mishra, co-founder of Yak9 Dog Chews (exhibitor)
- “SUPERZOO is a fantastic platform for brands that might not have widespread recognition to showcase their offerings and highlight what sets them apart. This event has provided valuable insights to me and my team, leading us to discover exceptional products that we’re eager to introduce in our stores.” — Zach Ward,Store Manager, Tomlinson Feed and Pets Inc. (attendee)
SUPERZOO once again welcomed a robust international presence, with participants joining from 84 countries. This global gathering of pet professionals constituted a significant portion of the total attendance, highlighting the event’s growing international influence. Countries such as India, Mexico, and South Korea, among others, were in attendance, reinforcing SUPERZOO’s position as a hub for fostering connections and advancing the global pet industry.
An impressive lineup of over 1,058 debut products took the stage at the New Product Showcase, celebrating the innovative advancements and visionary ideas transforming the pet industry. A distinguished panel of industry experts assessed each entry and awarded first-place winners and runners-up in 10 product categories, as well as one prestigious Judges Award for Best New-to-Market Pet Product.
- 2023 Judges Award for New-to-Market Pet Product: PerchPal (Wyld’s Wingdom Inc.)
- Point of Purchase: USA ID Tags (MyFamily)
- Bird: PerchPal (Wyld’s Wingdom Inc.)
- Small Animal: The Roam, With Patented Paw Protection Technology (Happy Habitats)
- Accessories & Gifts: biOrb AIR 30 Automated Terraium
SUPERZOO’s comprehensive education program offered more than 65 sessions guided by over 30 esteemed industry leaders with content geared to the specific needs of retailers and groomers. Free Show Floor Talks also provided valuable insights into e-commerce strategies, social media marketing and other crucial aspects of running a successful pet business today.
“SUPERZOO’s educational content was helpful in overcoming challenges we are facing today. I learned some good tips on how to manage staffing issues and gained insights on how to plan for the next 6 months,” said Donna Marie Sankar, owner and manager of Global Pet Foods – Canada.
SUPERZOO also recognized awe-inspiring creativity and talent at prestigious grooming contests. With over $35,000 in prizes at stake, 9 competitions awarded excellence in regular breed classes and special categories. The full list of winners can be found here.
“As we celebrate this year’s accomplishments, we must extend our heartfelt appreciation to our valued sponsors, including Purina, North American Pet Products, Scout’s Honor, ADM, Patchworkpet, Health Extension Pet Care, Tailwagger Dog Beer and Tuesday’s Natural Dog Company,” remarked Karsting. “All have played an integral role in making this event a success. Their support, alongside the dedication of countless participants and industry leaders, has ignited a spark that will continue to shape the pet retail community’s future.”
As SUPERZOO concluded with resounding success, the anticipation for the 2024 event has already begun, scheduled for August 14-16, with educational sessions commencing on August 13. Attendees can expect a dynamic and immersive environment that continues to fuel innovation, foster connections and drive the pet industry forward.
SUPERZOO boasts the most buyer participation of any trade show for the pet retail industry in North America. SUPERZOO provides pet retail and industry professionals with leading-edge education and access to the most comprehensive array of market-ready products for retailers to competitively differentiate themselves. For the ninth consecutive year, SUPERZOO has grown in exhibitor space and square footage, and has been listed among Trade Show Executive’s “Gold 100” trade events since 2014. Produced by World Pet Association (WPA), this annual event attracts retailers, product suppliers and service providers. For more information: www.SUPERZOO.org.