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Chapters to Run Its Own Trade Show
Leah Eichler -- 4/3/00

In the light of the brouhaha that ensued after last year's Canadian Booksellers Assocciation trade show--to which Canada's largest bookstore chain was "uninvited" at the last minute--Chapters has decided to run its own trade show, called CHEX2000, starting this fall.

"We were certainly very disappointed that we were uninvited last year to the CBA. We had an arrangement that was confirmed by the CBA and at a very awkward time--it was very last minute--was withdrawn. In our mind, it was highly unprofessional and unacceptable," Chapters spokesperson Helena Aalto told PW, adding that there are other reasons contributing to the company's forming its own trade show.

CHEX2000 will take place in four venues at four different times in order to accommodate bookstores across the country. CHEX will be in Montreal on September 12, Toronto on September 14, Calgary on September 19 and Vancouver on September 21.

"We need to focus on what is best for our business. A trade show in September, attended by more staff, is definitely much better for a national company.... For publishers as well, they will have more of an opportunity to meet more people in four cities than they would in a Toronto-only show," she added.

Aalto added that the CBA show, held in June, d s not fit Chapters' schedule as well as a September show. "By the time falls rolls around, some of the information you picked up in June is no longer with you," she noted.

CHEX2000 will be open to other booksellers as well as the public.

Chapters has no intention of attending the CBA's trade show this year, to be held in Toronto in June. The CBA recently announced plans to sell the show in hopes of appeasing publishers unhappy with booksellers' attendance. Some publishers have already begun scaling back their presence at CBA in anticipation of Chapters' shows.
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