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Lehigh Valley Meet the Buyers Expo Making Its Return

By Colin McEvoy on September 3, 2019

More than 200 people attended the 2017 Meet the Buyers Expo at the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks.

More than 200 people attended the 2017 Meet the Buyers Expo at the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks.

The Lehigh Valley Meet the Buyers Expo is making its return, presenting small businesses a unique opportunity to meet private industry professionals and procurement officers face-to-face and network with other companies.

The biennial event will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 23, at the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks at 101 Founders Way in Bethlehem.

A limited amount of tickets are available. Visit the Meet the Buyers Expo website for registration information for attendees and buyers alike.

The event allows attendees to network with large businesses along with federal, state, and local government agencies in a “reverse trade show” format, in which the buyers have tables and attendees from small- and medium-sized businesses network the show floor.

“You won’t find an event like this one in another community, particularly with the scope that the Meet the Buyers Expo has,” said Brett Smith, Director of the Lehigh University Small Business Development Center and chair of the event’s steering committee.

“This provides Lehigh Valley small businesses with a unique opportunity to discuss business opportunities, develop leads, and discuss procurement deals for products and services,” Smith said.

The Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) is among the sponsors of this event, and Melody Bradford, LVEDC Director of Business Outreach Programs, sits on the steering committee for the event.

“It’s an opportunity for the business community of the Lehigh Valley to come together,” Bradford said. “It allows for smaller businesses to meet the procurement officers and the key people at our larger businesses, and for the larger businesses to understand what types of local sourcing opportunities may be available to them in the Lehigh Valley.”

Nearly 50 buyers are expected to participate in the event. Among those already registered are Air Products, B. Braun, Crayola, Lehigh University, Lehigh Valley Health Network, Martin Guitar, Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, PPL, St. Luke’s University Health Network, Wind Creek Bethlehem, and more.

This marks the fourth time the Meet the Buyers Expo has been held, and the first time since 2013. The event has grown each year, with the 2017 expo drawing more than 250 attendees and buyers that reached beyond the borders of Lehigh and Northampton counties.

When attendees reach a buyer table, they will have 3 to 5 minutes to talk with the buyer. Attendees are encouraged to bring business cards and business capabilities statements to the event, as well as prepare an elevator speech and a prioritized list of the buyers they wish to meet.

Sponsorship opportunities for the Meet the Buyers Expo are still available. For more information, contact Brett Smith at [email protected] or 610-758-5878.

This year’s Meet the Buyers Expo was sponsored by LVEDC, KeyBank, Wells Fargo, ViaMedia/SECTV, Lehigh County, Northampton County, WDIY, Working Dog Press, EBC Printing, and Lehigh Valley Business.

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