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Features - Conferences & Events

Organizers of WasteExpo offer many compelling reasons for recyclers to attend the 2014 event in Atlanta.

April 3, 2014

Solid waste management continues to evolve. As recycling becomes more sophisticated, collection becomes more advanced and organic waste gains attention, companies are looking for ways to stay ahead of the curve.

Gaining a competitive edge can be achieved in many ways at the solid waste and recycling trade show WasteExpo. Event organizers say they anticipate 11,000 participants at this year’s event.

The conference runs from April 28 to May 1 and features educational sessions and special events, while the exhibition is scheduled for April 29 to May 1. The exhibit hall will display product offerings from 550 companies, including dozens of new companies, show organizers say. It all takes place at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.

Recycling Today spoke with Liz Bothwell, marketing director of the Waste Industry Group at Penton, based in New York City, about what else is in store for attendees of WasteExpo 2014. Penton’s Waste Industry Group, which publishes Waste360, has been working with the newly renamed and rebranded National Waste & Recycling Association, Washington, D.C., on programming for the event and other new attractions. (See page 62 for an interview with National Waste & Recycling Association President and CEO Sharon H. Kneiss.)

Recycling Today (RT): What new features will WasteExpo 2014 offer to this year’s attendees?

Liz Bothwell (LB): WasteExpo 2014 is all about giving attendees more. For 46 years, WasteExpo has been the largest solid waste and recycling trade show and conference in North America, and this time around we’re giving attendees even more:

  • More exhibitors – Solution providers are constantly innovating, and our exhibitors are waiting to show attendees their latest and greatest at WasteExpo 2014—to help them do their jobs even better. Plus, many new exhibitors are joining the ranks, so attendees will find everything they need under one roof.
  • More education – This is their once-a-year live opportunity to gain insights from thousands of industry experts and peers all under one roof. 2014 brings more content in the form of Super Sessions, Ask the Experts and Composting & Organics Recycling. Attendees will walk away with the knowledge they need to make money and save money while staying safe and compliant.
  • More connections – Attendees can network with 11,000 of their peers (more participants than any other event), to make helpful connections that can last a lifetime.
  • More bang for their buck – We know it’s not always easy to get out of the office, but we think attendees will agree that it’s worth it for WasteExpo, where everything is in one place. They can get more done in three days at WasteExpo than they can the rest of the year.

RT: We recently learned about Waste360’s renewed partnership with the National Waste & Recycling Association. How will that enhance the offerings at this year’s event?

LB: We’re delighted that we’ve expanded our partnership with the National Waste & Recycling Association. They’ve helped program an all new conference program with fresh content and a deeper focus on interaction and discussion. Plus, we’ve worked together to poll members and alumni to see exactly what was keeping them up at night. From new Ask the Expert sessions to Super Sessions, there’s so much more to this year’s event, and we can’t wait for our alumni and new attendees to experience it.

On the exhibitor side, we’ve partnered with the association to benefit exhibitors by being able to offer our customers the opportunity to reach the entire waste and recycling industry through our two organizations. Together we can be all things waste and recycling to our close-knit industry.


On the money

Penton’s Waste Industry Group, New York City, and Wunderlich Securities, Memphis, Tenn., will host the second annual WasteExpo Investor Summit, April 28, 2014, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta.

The Investor Summit is a collaborative effort between WasteExpo and Wunderlich Securities, a full-service brokerage firm. According to its organizers, the Investor Summit is the only dedicated gathering of corporate executives and institutional investors in the waste industry.

The summit will once again bring together senior management of major solid waste, industrial waste and energy-from-waste (EfW) companies; innovators of new technologies; and institutional investors, giving them a unique platform to speak directly to the financial community about the state of the industry and the performance of its leading businesses, event organizers say.

“The Investor Summit is the first major event on this year’s WasteExpo agenda (April 28 to May 1) and reflects our commitment to expanding the industry dialogue around sustainable materials management,” says Warren N. Bimblick, Penton senior vice president, strategy and business development.

“Last year’s successful launch of the Investor Summit speaks to the industry’s interest in this type of interactive event, and we’re pleased to bring together key figures and thought leaders from both the private and public companies,” Bimblick adds.

Michael E. Hoffman, managing director at Wunderlich Securities and a 27-year veteran of Wall Street with a focus on the solid waste, industrial waste and EfW markets, will lead the event.

“We are excited to be back with the WasteExpo Investor Summit following a terrific inaugural year in New Orleans,” says Hoffman. “As we did last year, we will have a day-long series of interviews with industry leaders in solid waste, hazardous/industrial waste and energy waste. In addition, there will be topical panels focusing on automation and productivity, private equity investing in waste companies and the state of the energy waste industry.”

More information on the second annual WasteExpo Investor Summit is available at


RT: The Investor Summit and Composting & Organics track, which debuted in 2013, are once again on the agenda. What prompted the decision to bring these back this year?

LB: Success is what prompted the decision to bring back both the Composting & Organics track as well as the WasteExpo Investor Summit.

The Composting & Organics track was standing room only last year, so we’ve actually made it two tracks this year, since that’s what our attendees said they wanted. We’ve worked again with Stu Buckner, former head of the U.S. Composting Council, to fulfill our promise to deliver world-class learning. To check out the robust program to see exactly what awaits this growing market, visit www.waste

The WasteExpo Investor Summit also was a successful launch, with hundreds of attendees eager to hear from industry luminaries about the state of the industry, their companies and what lies ahead. Wunderlich Securities, Memphis, Tenn., is once again sponsoring the event, and we look forward to delivering another successful and unique event.

RT: Why should someone in the recycling industry attend WasteExpo?

LB: WasteExpo is the live event for the recycling industry. Nowhere else will recycling professionals find more networking opportunities, business opportunities, real-world education and timely solutions. A main component of our conference program is recycling, and we made a conscious effort to ensure that recycling professionals are being served here. We’ve also teamed up with some local recycling associations to help them bring WasteExpo to their members.


Liz Bothwell is marketing director for Penton’s Waste Industry Group and can be reached at


On the agenda
Individuals who are considering attending WasteExpo, which is scheduled for April 28 to May 1 at the Georgia World Congress Center, Atlanta, can access the agenda for the event at