Belkin Pulls out of Macworld Expo

For the second time this week, a major vendor has pulled out of Macworld Conference & Expo being held next month. Peripheral-maker Belkin confirmed its plans to forgo taking booth space in the exhibit hall to Macworld on Friday.

"We are not exhibiting at Macworld, but we will be holding meetings with our channel partners," Belkin spokeswoman Melody Chalaban, told Macworld.

Chalaban said the economy hasn't affected Belkin directly, but it has affected its retail partners. Because of the current economic climate and feedback the company heard from its partners, they decided to make a change right away.

"We felt we should redistribute our funds and resources to help them," said Chalaban.

Show organizers said there will be plenty of exhibitors at Macworld Expo this year, despite the loss of Belkin.

"Macworld is going to have close to have 500 exhibitors this year and its going to be a great show," said IDG World Expo Vice President and General Manager Paul Kent. "While we're sorry Belkin isn't going to parpaticipate, attendees will have close to 500 exhibitors they can visit and see great Mac products."

The loss of Belkin and Adobe earlier this week doesn't worry industry analysts that follow Apple and the Mac market.

"I don't think it says anything bad about the Mac market," said Ross Rubin, director of analysis at NPD Group. "Apple's market share has been growing and clearly with the iPhone and its success, there a lot of new companies in the marketplace to promote."

Macworld isn't the only tradeshow that will be without Belkin in the new year. Chalaban also confirmed that the company would not be exhibiting at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

"We understand the benefits of Macworld and we certainly aren't discounting them," said Chalaban. The company will reexamine whether or not to exhibit at Macworld 2010 next year, she said.

Adobe on Tuesday said it would not be exhibiting at this year's Macworld. While Adobe won't have a booth on the show floor at the annual Mac trade show, a spokesman said it would still have a presence at the week-long event.

Various Adobe product teams will be involved in Macworld tracks, including a full day of CS4 demo sessions with Adobe evangelists on Wednesday, January 7.

Even with the loss of two major vendors, NPD still sees Macworld as an important event moving forward.

"It certainly remains a touchstone event within the industry, and remains a key forum where Apple, in particular, makes major announcements," said Rubin.

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