Step into a time capsule with us.
It’s 22 years ago, and the place is Las Vegas. It’s the first-ever Channel Partners show. Five master agents who pioneered the event and continue to attend it are in the room. Some of the names and faces are different, but there are still many important similarities.
Some of those pioneers will share their recollections of this event at the upcoming Founders’ Forum, April 10, at the Channel Partners Conference & Expo in Las Vegas. It’s part of the revenue and supplier portfolio track, sponsored by Nextiva. Intelisys co-founder Rick Dellar, WTG CEO Vince Bradley, MicroCorp CEO Karin Fields, PlanetOne CEO Ted Schuman and TBI president Geoffrey Shepstone will participate.
Quy Nguyen, founder and CEO of Allyance Communications, will moderate the discussion.
We asked several of the panelists to recall memories from the first Channel Partners shows and dish out predictions for future ones.
|Hear from these speakers and 100+ more at the Channel Partners Conference & Expo, April 9-12, 2019, in Las Vegas. Register now!|
We have edited the transcript for clarity.
Channel Partners: Do you remember any moments vividly from the first meet-up?
Vince Bradley: The first show in Chicago was lightly attended, but we all were very excited about what it could become. it was really nice to to connect with just about everyone since not so many were there. One thing I do remember vividly was what the commercial speakers were doing for their companies and how we had to really work that in the beginning or it would have gotten out of control.
Ted Schuman: I’ve been connected to this conference for as long as I can remember — back when it was called Virgo Publishing’s “The Agent Show,” for the history buffs in our channel. So here’s my vivid memory, which was without a doubt a humbling and memorable moment in my career that we can all laugh at now, and many laughed at then.
I was emceeing the show, and back then the conference had no more than 200 attendees. Well, I had just gotten done moderating a panel and was on my way to the restroom, not realizing my mic was still hot. On my way to the men’s room, the publisher of Virgo stopped me. She said, “Ted, he’s up there pitching!” — speaking about one of the providers currently on stage. I replied with a little fire in my voice, “I told that ass**** if he pitched I’d shut him down.” Needless to say my colorful comments to her came down as the voice of God (via my mic) and were heard loud and clear by everyone in the room — including the relentless pitcher on stage. Not knowing what to expect, we walked back into the room and it erupted with laughter and applause; clearly everyone was thinking what I was saying.
That was back in Tampa, right when the show really began to take off. Once the master agents descended onto the conference, the show quickly …