HOUSTON (January 15, 2016) – Results from the first annual SpaceCom (Space Commerce Conference and Expo) revealed a great desire and need to harness space technology for business applications and innovation across multiple industries. The event also further solidified Houston’s place as a leading destination partner in the creation of new, annual conferences and conventions.

More than 1,700 professionals representing the aerospace, financial, energy, medical, maritime, satellite communications and advanced manufacturing industries attended the three-day event, which took place Nov. 17-19 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston. They wanted to capitalize on an estimated $320 billion global space economy—one that’s growing by the minute. 

Visit Houston/Houston First Corp. and National Trade Productions (NTP) partnered to create SpaceCom.  Trade show industry veteran and NTP Founder and Chairman Bob Harar stated, “We could not have asked for a better launch for SpaceCom. We exceeded expectations in nearly every metric, which is exceptional for a launch event.  NTP has produced many events, but never one with such a unique partnership structure that brought so much to the table. Houston could not have been a better location or partner for SpaceCom.”

Satellite Applications Catapult CEO Stuart Martin commented in his November 18 keynote, “in the last 24 hours, SpaceCom has become the premier event for the commercial space industry.”

Highlights from SpaceCom 2015 include:

-  Attendees representing 37 states and 23 countries, with delegations from the United Kingdom and Italy
-  100+ booths showcasing innovative and collaborative products and services
-  More than 50 media representatives from around the world
-  Taped address from Sen. Ted Cruz and two feeds from astronauts aboard the International Space Station
-  Keynotes from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides, Satellite Applications Catapult CEO Stuart Martin, Royal Dutch Shell CTO Yuri Sebregts, and author Chris Impey
-  Unique exposition floor with an opening reception, Innovation Theater, VIP Meet and Greets, NASA Modular Robotic Vehicle (MRV) and show floor tours
-  First-ever Commercial Spaceport Summit with representatives from 14 international spaceports

SpaceCom was born out of the desire of the Houston community to showcase the current advancements in space technology, as well as seed the new markets that are created at the intersection of space and other industries. In 2012, officials from JSC connected with Visit Houston, which had already successfully partnered in the creation of other shows including Comicpalooza and Medical World Americas. Next, a taskforce including representatives from NASA JSC, Rice University, Houston Airport System, economic development agencies and others was formed to examine the feasibility of such an event. Once the concept proved viable, Visit Houston approached National Trade Productions, a leader in conference and trade show management, to help make it a reality.

“I think what’s unique about SpaceCom is the seamless partnership that was created between a quasi-governmental agency with Visit Houston/Houston First, a full-fledged government agency with NASA and a private sector company like NTP,” said Michael Heckman, Vice President for Partnerships and Event Development at Houston First Corp. “Despite the different perspectives, we were able to come together and execute this event in a way that will build a foundational, first-of-its kind marketplace for the space commerce industry and create a legacy event for the Houston region.”

Plans are set for SpaceCom 2016, which will take place Nov. 15-17 at the George R. Brown Convention Center. Companies can reserve sponsorships and booth space by contacting spacecomsales@ntpshow.com. Registration will open in the spring of 2016. For more information about SpaceCom, visit spacecomexpo.com.

About SpaceCom

SpaceCom (the Space Commerce Conference and Exposition) focuses on the application of space technologies to fuel business innovation across the medical, energy, transportation/maritime, communications and advanced manufacturing industries. The event is produced in collaboration with NASA Johnson Space Center, Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS), Greater Houston Convention and Visitors Bureau (GHCVB), Houston First Corporation, and National Trade Productions. For more information, visit www.spacecomexpo.com.

About Houston First/Visit Houston
Houston First Corporation operates the city's finest convention and arts facilities to position Houston as a world-class destination. In 2014, Houston First and Visit Houston aligned their operations to create a single clear voice representing the city. Houston First owns the Hilton Americas-Houston hotel and manages more than 10 city-owned buildings, plazas and parking facilities. Properties include the George R. Brown Convention Center, Miller Outdoor Theatre, Wortham Center and Jones Hall for the Performing Arts. For more information, visit HoustonFirst.com and VisitHouston.com

A.J. Mistretta