Letter from the Chair

I wanted to take a moment and thank everyone who participated in our recently held SPE Decorating & Assembly Division Topical Conference (TopCon) that was co-located with the In-Mold Decorating Association and its IMDA Symposium – either through attending and/or exhibiting. The conference took place in early June in an exciting location – Franklin, Tennessee, just outside of Nashville. Although our overall attendee numbers were down a little bit from our previous TopCons, we had a very engaged group that created a great deal of networking throughout the two-day event.

I have said this before, but it is worth reiterating: Webinars, podcasts and other forms of digital communication cannot replace person-to-person interaction and networking. So many great ideas come from others who are involved with similar types of work or businesses. The programming and presentations are important, but the combination of this along with the opportunity for one-on-one conversations with the tabletop exhibitors and other attendees is what sets a conference apart from any other type of event or online program.

Looking ahead, we have already finalized next year’s TopCon and IMDA Symposium. It will take place June 17-18, 2020, at the Ann Arbor Marriott Ypsilanti at Eagle Crest, in Ypsilanti, Michigan – just outside Detroit. We are very excited about this and hope that many of you will join us for the event.

Other upcoming events will include ANTEC® that will run March 30-April 2, 2020, in San Antonio, Texas. Our division will be working on sponsoring at least one session for ANTEC on the latest technologies in plastics decorating and assembly. Be sure to mark your calendar for both our TopCon and ANTEC in 2020.

If you have any questions on SPE and our Decorating & Assembly Division, do not hesitate to contact me at jeff@petersonpublications.com. I am honored to be the current chairman and would be glad to help anyone with any questions. Thank you for all your support.

Jeff Peterson
President, Peterson Publications, Inc.
Chair, SPE Decorating & Assembly Division


TopCon and IMDA Symposium Success in Franklin

topconOnce again, the jointly conducted SPE Decorating & Assembly Division Topical Conference and the In-Mold Decorating Association (IMDA) Symposium was a great success. The combined event brought in more than 120 attendees and 28 tabletop exhibits to the Supplier Trade Fair.

“This year’s TopCon was a great event,” remarked SPE Chairman Jeff Peterson. “We’ve built a truly irreplaceable community devoted to sharing knowledge and tackling challenges that have arisen in the industry. This is an event that is not to be missed.”

The event boasted a wealth of opportunities for attendees to gather, share and collaborate on common and new issues affecting the industry. General session paper presentations were given on topics covering all fields of plastics decorating, assembly and in-mold decorating/labeling.

This year also saw the return of the popular interactive workshops where smaller groups were able to interact with their fellow attendees in a more intimate setting. Participants were able to choose two workshops to attend each day, thereby allowing them to engage with a variety of topics. Subjects for workshops ranged from curing technologies for plastics applications to discussions of surface treatments for decorating and joining.

“The interactive workshops are one of the best parts of TopCon,” said Peterson. “The variety of topics and number of sessions we’re able to offer attendees is just one of the things that makes TopCon such a unique, worthwhile event. We had a great event this year and look forward to many more.”

More information will be available on the Plastics Decorating website (www.plasticsdecorating.com) regarding next year’s TopCon and Symposium in early 2020.