vegasWhat happens in Vegas stays in Vegas is the tag line these days. But what happens in Las Vegas is often an economic indication which bodes well for the businesses who use trade shows for marketing. Of note, Las Vegas hosted nearly 22,000 trade shows, meeting or conventions in 2012. the highest numbers since 2008.

Las Vegas welcomed a record 39.7 million visitors in 2012, approximately a half-million more visitors than the previous high of 39.2 million set in 2007. The record visitation generated more than $40 billion in economic impact for the local economy last year.

The 2012 year-end statistics, released today by the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA), point to continued recovery for Las Vegas tourism with increases in all of the key core indicators.

"The record visitation is a testament to the dedication and commitment of our resort partners and every employee who works in the industry," said Rossi Ralenkotter, president/CEO of the LVCVA. "Tourism is the economic leader for Southern Nevada and the entire state, so we are encouraged to see positive signs of continued growth for the industry. With more than $2 billion of reinvestment in the destination, Las Vegas is well positioned for continued growth in 2013 and on the threshold of hosting more than 40 million visitors."

Other year-end highlights:

    • Compared to 2011, visitor volume increased 2.1 percent in 2012 with approximately 800,000 more guests allowing the destination to reach 39.7 million annual visitors.
    • Gradual improvement in the meetings and convention industry with 4.9 million delegates attending a convention, trade show or meeting in 2012, reflecting a 1.6 percent increase over last year. This is the highest convention attendance in four years.
    • Las Vegas hosted 21,615 meetings, tradeshows or conventions in 2012, up 13.6 percent from the 2011 total of 19,029. The 2012 total is the highest number of meetings and conventions held in Las Vegas since 2008. .

Smash Hit Displays has seen a trend over the last year of businesses having their show displays and custom trade show displays being shipped to their upcoming Vegas trade show or convention. Seeing those kinds of numbers are encouraging. As goes Vegas, often goes the trade show industry.