The National Cable & Telecommunications Association, the trade group representing major cable operators and programmers, announced that it will no longer hold an annual convention.
NCTA had hosted a trade show for the past 65 years. With the decision by NCTA’s board to end the confab, the INTX event scheduled for April 2017 in Washington, D.C., will not take place as previously announced. Prior to 2015, the show was known as the Cable Show, and before that it was called the National Show.
Once a must-attend event for cable TV bizzers, the NCTA’s annual show has declined in relevance in recent years — in no small part because of consolidation in the industry. With Comcast, AT&T/DirecTV, Charter Communications and Dish Network representing the bulk of U.S. pay-TV subscribers, programmers and other vendors have less need for in-person trade shows to negotiate deals.
An NCTA spokesman declined to say whether there will be layoffs associated with the shutdown of the trade show.
Last week, NCTA announced that it was rebranding itself as NCTA — the Internet & Television Association, a change meant to reflect the rise of digital video in the business, and a name that corresponded with the name of INTX (the “Internet and Television Expo”).
“We believe large trade show floors, dotted with exhibit booths and stilted schedules have become an anachronism,” NCTA president and CEO Michael Powell said in a statement. “Contemporary venues emphasize conversation, dialog, and more intimate opportunities to explore and interact with technology. Ending INTX gives us a clean slate and we are excited to explore presenting our industry in new and different ways.”
Powell said that the trade org was exploring “new and better ways to tell our story, to gather our community, to advance our growth and present our vision of the future.”