ASHRAE President-elect Brenda Zamora and current President Carlos Guillermo Mendoza presided over the opening press conference along with Clay Stevens, president International Exposition Co. and Jude Garcia, president MFV Mexico. The NEWS represented the United States at the press conference along with about 20 newspapers and magazines from Mexico. (Click on the photo for an enlarged view.)

MEXICO CITY - The Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration (AHR) Expo - Mexico boasted of the largest event in its seven-year history, as the attendee count hit 6,061. For only the second time, the country's largest HVACR exhibition was hosted by Mexico City, and this was the first time that it had come to the World Trade Center (WTC) venue, the country's foremost exposition center.

Clay Stevens, president of International Exposition Co., said that the likelihood of returning to the WTC in the future was very good. "This year the show covered 40,540 net square feet of exposition space and attracted 2,386 exhibitor personnel. By prior counts, this may not be our largest showing of exhibitors, but we have more than doubled the total attendance.

"That is the most impressive feature of the AHR Expo - Mexico, to date," said Stevens.

Actually, the number of exhibiting companies may also be a record for the show. Stevens explained that past years involved a partnership with another vendor and that the number of exhibitors reported included companies that were not strictly HVACR, who are no longer eligible to exhibit. This year, 281 HVACR companies exhibited at the show. Regardless, the event is the largest of its kind in Mexico and is showing no signs of slowing down in future years.

The Air-Conditioning, Refrigeration Institute (ARI) and the American Society of Heating Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) are co-sponsors of AHR Expo - Mexico just as they are of the annual parent show in the United States, the AHR Expo. Compared to the AHR Expo, Expo Mexico is about one-tenth the size; yet it rates in the top third of all show events in Mexico.

In addition to the three-day trade show (Oct. 10-12), the event also featured 27 ASHRAE educational sessions. Attendees for the ASHRAE meetings and the trade show came from 12 countries with most being from Mexico and the United States.

"The event began in Mexico in 1997. I believe there are two reasons for the success of this show," said Stevens. "It's all about the exchange of information. Thousands of products are available in the HVACR market and professionals in Mexico need to have access to this information. Also, having face-to-face contact is invaluable for conducting effective business in this industry."

Carlos Guillermo Mendoza, ASHRAE president of the Mexico City chapter, spoke about the activities of the organization and the cooperation between Mexico and the United States for coordinating national standards.

When asked about green building efforts in Mexico, Mendoza said, "The movement hasn't grown as fast in Mexico as we might desire because of the multiple construction disciplines involved and because of the complexity of local building codes."

He acknowledged that the upward trend of green building concepts in the United States is gaining traction from just a few years ago.

"However, I believe that as the savings become more obvious to the building owners in Mexico, that green will grow even more in importance."

Brenda Zamora, president-elect of the Mexico City chapter of ASHRAE, will be taking over for Mendoza in the near future. She will be the first woman in Mexico to hold that position.

Zamora, Mendoza, and Stevens all shared a common goal at the meeting. "Our plan for the future is to come back with more shows. We hope to be one of the forces that helps our industry grow in Mexico," said Stevens.

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Publication date: 11/20/2006