IBM, Lotus Pull Out of Comdex Trade Show

One of the Comdex trade show's biggest exhibitors has decided to walk away from the expo: IBM -- including its Lotus Development Corp. subsidiary -- will not participate in next year's Spring and Fall Comdex trade shows, a Lotus spokesman confirmed today.

One of the Comdex trade show's biggest exhibitors has decided to walk away from the expo: IBM -- including its Lotus Development Corp. subsidiary -- will not participate in next year's Spring and Fall Comdex trade shows, a Lotus spokesman confirmed today.

The decision was made at the end of this year's Fall Comdex in Las Vegas last month, said Paul LaBelle, manager of corporate public relations at Lotus in Cambridge, Massachusetts. "We're taking a close look at where we're investing our resources," said LaBelle, who declined to comment in more detail.

IBM's Personal Systems Group has been evaluating Comdex for the last two years, and customer feedback and research have led it to decide that it is not the best way to reach its customers, said Bill Hughes, vice president of communications.

"We're still looking at major trade shows," said Hughes, saying that the Personal Systems Group would increase its presence at CeBIT in Hannover, Germany, and attend other shows as well.

"Comdex is primarily a product show, and our focus in on our solutions message," said Hughes.

Another major PC maker, Compaq Computer Corp., has declined to participate in Comdex since 1991; a spokesman cited the high cost. At last month's show in Las Vegas, Masayoshi Son, head of Softbank Corp., the Tokyo-based parent of the show, dismissed the lack of big name participants such as Compaq and Netscape Communications Corp., pointing to the regular showing of IBM and Microsoft Corp.

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