Home News & Events Fabtech Show 2016 Highlights

Fabtech Show 2016 Highlights

Jan. 26, 2017

There is no doubt that most of us consider the FABTECH Show to be the “Super-Bowl” for the welding, cutting and fabricating industries. This year’s show in Las Vegas is fondly referred to as the “Super-Bowl” because it is the largest show in North American where one can view live demonstrations and visit with manufacturers offering technology and equipment that serve the metal forming, fabricating, welding and cutting industries. FABTECH 2016 was a 3-day event spanning over 575,000 square feet and the show welcomed over 1500 exhibiting companies. The Show itself received over 31,000 visitors which is not a record, but still much greater attendance than most anticipated considering the overall. A larger attendance usually happens when the show is in Chicago and can exceed 42,000, however no one was complaining regarding this year’s numbers.

Therefore, the FABTECH Show is the platform in which most manufactures like us choose to introduce new products. This year Bug-O Systems introduced six new products again. (Click here to view our product video overview.) The excitement is normally high, however this year’s show seemed to possess an abnormally high level of excitement and optimism for an improved 2017 business environment.

It’s no secret to anyone that the welding, cutting and fabricating industries have been in a bit of a slump due in part to extremely low oil and natural gas prices, as well as commodities in general. At a time when the welding and cutting industries would appear to be softening and oil prices at the time of the show were hovering around $50 a barrel, one might ask, why was the attendance strong and enthusiasm so high? The “word on the show floor” seemed to be glad that the election was behind us and now we can start focusing again on business. Never the less, we will still need to see real changes in oil, natural gas, minerals and commodity prices as well as perhaps some regulation changes before these industries will flourish once again. That said however, just this week President Donald Trump signed the Keystone Pipe Agreement which will construct two pipe lines with the stipulation that both the pipes and the products to build them must be made/fabricated in the USA. Certainly this is good news for the industry and Bug-O as well. Bug-O Systems has been designing, fabricating and manufacturing our products just outside Pittsburgh, PA in Canonsburg, for over 68 years and is still the only such equipment made in America and offers a 3-Year Warranty.
From our perspective, (Bug-O Systems) we saw this new level of excitement at the show as a very good sign in general. Having people within the various industries we serve, with a positive outlook is never a bad thing. Oil prices since the FABTECH Show have moved up nearly 10% and we are now seeing additional indications of growth in other industry segments. Based upon discussions with some of our customers we see transportation and shipyards still offering many opportunities. Additionally, investments from the state and federal levels of government will allow us to recognize investments in municipalities in general which will impact general construction, bridge work, structural and specialty work as well.
Within the Bug-O Booth we noticed that the quality of the attendees this year was also much higher. Many people actually arrived at our booth with drawings and real issues and were soliciting our input to help them solve their welding and cutting productivity concerns. Bug-O products, as most know, allow a company to reduce their costs while improving their overall efficiencies. It still takes a skilled operator to run the Bug-O equipment, but once you take the gun out of the operator’s hand, quality also goes up and depositions rates are also greater. 
In these very tough economic times we are all challenged with ways to improve profitability. Companies today, more than ever are looking for ways to lower their costs of cutting and welding and at the same time increase productivity and quality. Bug-O Systems, as “Power Tools for Welders” also greatly helps with preparing the industry with new and more valuable human resources for the welding and cutting industries by turning out better more effective operators more quickly than traditional manual methods can. This will have a very positive effect as the current aging workforce today moves into retirement and there is a growing demand for more effective and efficient operators. For more information on how Bug-O products can help your company achieve your financial GOALS, please call us at 1-800-245-3186.