More on ASR's Virtue Expo

June 30, 2008

The Orange country Business journal reports:

San Juan Capistrano-based Action Sports Retailer has a new baby.

The tradeshow company said it’s launching a smaller show called Virtue aimed at edgy lifestyle brands focused on mixed martial arts, freestyle motocross, tattoo culture, art and music. The show will be held in September at the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego, which will be across the street from the bigger ASR Expo happening at the same time.

Andy Tompkins, ASR’s group show director, said mixed martial arts, which also involves punching and wrestling, is “one of the fastest growing sports in America.” “We’ve had strong interest from both the exhibitor and retail side to offer a trade event for this emerging market,” Tompkins said.

ASR typically draws more than 18,000 people, including 6,600 buyers and 500 media types.

The show has felt the impact of a soft economy, with a few skate shoe brands pulling out citing schedule conflicts and other reasons.

Looks like the addition of the MMA brands came at a very fortuitous time. Having a smaller than usual main event should also lead to increased exposure for the MMA brands at Virtue.

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