ANME Winter Expo Kicks Off in Las Vegas

Army Navy Military Expo Showcases Backbone of Tactical and Surplus Industry

anme_logoThe Army Navy Military Expo (ANME) kicked off Sunday at the Rio All Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, just days before the official start of that other big show in town catering to similar crowds.  The ANME is a business-to-business trade show that offers goods from the army, navy, tactical & law enforcement, camping & outdoors industries.  GunLink staff had a chance to stop by the show on opening day to walk the aisles and visit with a number of the exhibitors.

As one exhibitor explained to us, the show was born about half a decade ago following a change of direction in another show that many of the vendors had previously focused on and has been growing ever since.  For business owners and buyers in the surplus and tactical industries, the ANME offers much more personal opportunities to interact with their suppliers than some larger shows.  The show also offers a venue for SMBs and start-ups for whom getting on an exhibitor waiting list and hoping to get in might not work.

ANME SponsorsThere is some overlap between SHOT and ANME exhibitors and attendees – we saw some familiar faces both in the booths as well as walking the aisles, including a James Yeager sighting – but another vendor explained to us that there is often a marked difference what attendees are looking for.  Rather than focusing on the latest firearms and high-tech gadgets, attendees here are looking for genuine military surplus goods as well as outdoor and survival staples and basic tactical products – something that can be challenging in a world where the finite supply of vintage surplus goods is ever shrinking.

ANME ShowThese challenges, as well as other aspects of the surplus market, are addressed in this month’s issue of the trade publication Surplus Today by Dr. Frank Arian – the operator of the world’s only combination doctor’s office/military surplus store and son of the late Jack Arian, who grew a number of surplus stores after serving in WWII.  In addition to Dr. Arian’s state of the industry piece, the January issue of Surplus Today also contains the ANME show guide which includes information on the nearly 150 exhibitors showing their wares.  Those exhibitors run the gamut from well known gear makers like Rothco, Tru-Spec, Voodoo, and Kelty to affordable armor manufacturers BulletSafe to suppliers of surplus gear whose names you might not know, like Action Military Surplus and Militaria Inc.

This week will see many business owners and purchasing managers tasked with finding outdoor, law enforcement and tactical gear to stock in their stores descend on Las Vegas.  Those people may do well to check out the 2015 Winter ANME while they are in town.  For those who can’t make it, there is also a Summer ANME in Las Vegas this August.

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