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CEIR: Exhibition industry declined 12.5% in 2009

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Dallas—The exhibition industry declined 12.5% in 2009, according to Center for Exhibition Industry Research Index figures released Monday.

The CEIR Index is based on a combination of net square feet, revenue, professional attendance and number of exhibiting companies. The decline in 2009 was four times larger than the largest previous drop, which was 3.1% in 2008.

“The length, depth and reach of this recession made resistance impossible,” Douglas L. Ducate, president-CEO of CEIR, said in a statement. “The concern today is not for what happened in 2008 and 2009 but what the outlook is for the industry over the next several years and for what organizers can do to strengthen their events.”

The CEIR Index for the fourth quarter of 2009 indicated an industry decline of 8.9% compared with the fourth quarter of 2008. Nonetheless, the fourth quarter showed less steep declines than the previous three quarters of 2009.

The CEIR Index has declined for seven straight quarters.

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