CES gadet show gives Las Vegas $283 million economic boost

CES gadet show gives Las Vegas $283 million economic boost

source: Las Vegas Sun

January 6, 2020

A wearable device that helps people fall asleep. A full body pod that measures everything from blood pressure to hydration levels. A microcurrent electrical device that could help with allergy-related sinus pain.

Those are just some of the high-tech health products that will be on display this week at the CES 2020 gadget show in Las Vegas.

“Digital health exhibitors are up about 25% this year,” said Karen Chupka, an executive vice president with the Consumer Technology Association, which owns CES. “There are many more products and apps and things like that that really enable consumers to better monitor and take care of their health.”

The annual tech industry show, which will be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center and nearly a dozen other sites, will feature more than 4,500 companies and over 170,000 attendees, according to the CES webpage. It runs Tuesday through Friday.

Jennier Ernst, CEO and co-founder of Tivic Health Systems, a California-based company, said she thinks the reach of digital health — specifically bioelectric medicine — is primed for rapid growth.

Tivic recently rolled out a device called ClearUP, a small electronic stimulator to ease allergy-related sinus pain. The device, which retails for about $150, was credited by Time magazine as being one of the top inventions of 2019.

“This is the same technology that’s being used in brain stimulations and spinal implants, and we’re bringing it as a mass market product,” said Ernst, who is scheduled to speak at the convention’s annual digital health summit. “Our body is an electrochemical system. We’ve been using chemistry for decades, but we’ve pretty much ignored the electrical side of the body.”

This will be the last CES at the Las Vegas Convention Center before a 1.4 million square-foot, $1.5 billion expansion and remodeling project is finished.

“We’re excited about the new space,” Chupka said. “We’re planning tours for some of our exhibitors because they haven’t seen the space yet.”

Born in New York City in the 1960s, CES later split into two seasonal shows — one winter event in Las Vegas and one summer show in Chicago — before moving here exclusively.

“One of the things we love about Las Vegas is the 24-hour atmosphere. When you have a global show like we do, it’s important that your customers from around the world can find a place to eat late at night,” Cupka said. “It’s also one of the few cities with a 150,000 available sleeping rooms, which is important.”

Chupka also pointed to the flexibility of McCarran International Airport to accommodate incoming guests for CES.

“We’re lucky enough that the airlines this year added about 20,000 extra seats just during the week of CES,” she said. “The ability for McCarran to add those extra flights, that’s very beneficial to us. We feel Vegas has always been a great partner for us, but has also worked with us to help us grow over the years.”

Since 1978, CES has drawn about 4.7 million people to Southern Nevada, according to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority. This year’s show is expected to pack an economic impact of over $283 million, the authority said.

While away from the show, attendees and exhibitors will be shopping and eating at local resorts and spending money on Las Vegas’ many entertainment options.

“The impact of CES on the resort industry and this community cannot be understated,” said Virginia Valentine, president of the Nevada Resort Association. “CES is a crucial component of the convention calendar every year.”

Lori Nelson-Kraft, senior vice president for communications and government affairs for the LVCVA, said the authority’s “longstanding partnership with the Consumer Technology Association is invaluable to the Las Vegas destination and benefits our community immensely.