CEF LIVE hailed the ‘biggest and best yet’

CEF LIVE returned to Birmingham’s NEC on June 8 and 9, with stands from more than 50 leading suppliers attracting almost 3,000 visitors over the two days.

This year’s CEF LIVE was a winner on all fronts, significantly raising awareness of the leading electrical distribution chain, its online offering and services, as well as providing a platform for 50-plus manufacturers and suppliers to showcase their latest products.

Hall 9 at the NEC was crammed to the gunwales as visitors engaged with suppliers and listened to the industry leading seminar programme over the two days of the show.

CEF General Manager, Chris Ashworth, told us: “With the skills gap continuing to grow, it has never been more important to promote our industry as the vibrant and dynamic sector it is today.

“Events such as CEF LIVE support those who are new to the trade by helping them gain practical experience with the latest equipment and providing vital insight into changing legislation.

“This year’s event at the NEC was even bigger and better than the last, seeing nearly 3,000 people walk through the doors. The knowledge seminars proved to be hugely successful with hundreds of visitors attending sessions on both days.

“Tony Cable’s and Darren Staniforth’s highly entertaining discussion on the upcoming 18th Edition drew a huge crowd and, judging by the reactions of those in attendance, provided some invaluable insight.

“We’re extremely thankful to everyone who supported CEF LIVE this year, especially the brands, exhibitors, speakers and attendees at the show. By inspiring the next generation of electrical professionals, we are all working together to ensure the longevity and continued success of our industry.”

In fact, it was standing room only for the exclusive preview of the much-anticipated 18th Edition of the IET Wiring Regulations and it was the last opportunity to hear Industry legend and the NICEIC’s Senior Marketing and Events Engineer, Tony Cable, before he retires later this year.

In a new development for the 2017 event, the second day of CEF LIVE focused on young professionals in the electrical contracting sector. The final day hosted a series of activities designed specifically for those entering the trade.

Supportive workshops and fun challenges, hosted by JTL – the electrical industry’s training body – were available for those looking to boost their industry knowledge and skill-set.

Educational presentations also advised young professionals on how they can select the most suitable electrical protective devices.

Both days also included seminars on how to legally deal with electrical waste – a key environmental issue within the industry – as well as demonstrations of best practice when it comes to electrical safety.

Among the big names taking part were DeWALT, Milwaukee, Klein Tools, Dimplex, Electrium, Schneider, Eaton, 3M, Legrand, Prysmian, HellermannTyton, Hamilton, Scolmore Group, Super Rod, Vent-Axia, RXG Redring Xpelair Group and Aico, Nest, Hive and many others.

During the show, visitors also learned about CEF’s online offering, along with the national accounts and projects service.

CEF Senior Managing Director, Thomas H Mackie said: “As a company, we take great pride in not only listening to our customers but also acting on what they say. CEF LIVE allows us an opportunity to spend time with our customers to listen some more and understand how we can support them more effectively in the future.”

One of the innovations at the show was CEF’s Event Dashboard, an interactive App promoting the latest deals, seminars, exhibitors, must see and do’s and prize draws.

The show also supported the Electrical Industries Charity. Visitors could sign up for the charity’s lottery and hear about other opportunities to get involved – such as Raise the Roof, a new concept which provides individual fundraisers with an opportunity to raise funds for a family in need. Funds were also raised for the charity at CEF’s Gala Dinner on June 10th with a F1 Challenge and raffle. CEF is donating every penny raised from the sale of carrier bags across all of its branches towards the Raise the Roof campaign.