PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - With the cutting of the ribbon, the 25th edition of the Jackson County Industrial Trade Show opened with a bang. It's a lot of people and a great way to spin up new business partnerships.
"It enhances what I do," said Mike Hendrix, who is a sales representative. "It gives me relationships further, it drills down deeper with the customers that I deal with. Most of them are here or will come through this trade show."
The trade show is also a way to get up close and personal and hand out some business cards, according to business owner Norman Cupit.
"It's a great opportunity for us to just meet and hug necks with the customers we deal with all year long," Cupit said. "Mostly, we deal with them over the phone or email. We never get to lay hands on each other. So this time of year, this always works out great."
If you want to get your name out, this is the place to be. Just ask marketing manager Liz Hoop.
"This gives us the exposure we need over in Jackson County to the industrial area, as well as any other commercial type business," Hoop explained.
Some businesses show up year after year.
"Well, we've had new customers that have come in and we've been able to make more contacts with different customers that we haven't had in the past and have been able to make sales with that," customer service representative Brett Williams said.
For the vendors at the Jackson County industrial trade show, being here means future business.
"It's our first year here and will have a lot of questions. What do you do? What do you sell? So, hopefully, we'll get our product out and everybody sees what we've got and grow our business. We're in a growth mode," business engineer Todd Steelman explained.
Tuesday's event was highlighted by a speech from the executive director of the Mississippi Development Authority, Brent Christensen. He spoke about the recovering state economy, and the importance that Jackson County plays in that recovery.