WESTPORT, Conn. — Over 1,700 companies already have reserved more than 414,500 square feet of exhibit space for the 2012 Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Exposition (AHR Expo) in Chicago, Jan. 23-25, 2012. According to the International Exposition Company, which produces and manages the AHR Expo, the 2012 event will be the largest HVACR exposition of all time. The 2012 expo has already surpassed the previous all-time record of 410,415 square feet set at the 2006 expo in Chicago.

Included among the more than 1,700 exhibiting companies from 34 countries are more than 130 first-time exhibitors and over 300 non-U.S. exhibitors. According to the International Exposition Co., the 2012 expo may also be on track to establish new records for total attendees (59,079) and registered visitors (38,534), excluding exhibitor personnel.

“We are very pleased about achieving this new all-time record, especially as this is our company’s 100th anniversary,” said Clay Stevens, president of International Exposition Co. “Historically, the number of attendees tends to increase proportionately with the increase in square footage.” Stevens attributes much of this growth to more companies introducing new energy-efficient equipment, as well as the anticipation that their customers will need to replace outdated equipment that they have been nursing through an uncertain economy.

Stevens said that another reason for the record exhibit space is that AHR Expo covers all segments of the HVACR industry, including the new solar and sustainable technologies that are experiencing strong growth. A comprehensive educational program featuring more than 100 sessions and special show features also attracts a significant number of HVACR professionals from around the world.

“Based on these early indicators, we expect Chicago to be a very strong event,” Stevens added.

For more information, go to www.ahrexpo.com.

Publication date: 11/28/2011