LAS VEGAS  The baking industry’s growth relies on the nexus of ideas between cross-functional, multi-level teams from all partners in the baking industry. Every three years, the American Bakers Association (ABA) and Baking Equipment Manufacturers & Allieds (BEMA) provide that venue with IBIE, complete with a global equipment and supplier expo. To maintain IBIE’s positive momentum in non-IBIE years, BEMA and ABA have partnered again for a new business-forward event called Nexus. The first Nexus is Sept. 25-28, 2023, in Dallas. 

Initially announced at BEMA Convention 2022, the event aims to advance the business needs of the industry by facilitating education and collaboration for a wide range of baking sector employees. The conference’s three pillars will guide Nexus’ program strategy: Spark Sessions, IBIEducate and Industry Collaborations.

“Nexus is where I bring my new employees, my future leaders,” said Kerwin Brown, president and chief executive officer, BEMA, during the announcement earlier this year. “Nexus is where I come to learn about the industry, about trends, about things to grow my business. Nexus is where I collaborate with other suppliers, and Nexus is where I go to show my latest and greatest innovations to the baking industry. Those are the things you’re going to be saying after next September.”

In Spark Sessions’ private meeting spaces, bakers and suppliers will gather for in-depth discussions on specific business challenges. Based on attendee input, the topics could include equipment needs, ingredient and engineering innovation, and the status of current or future projects. BEMA and ABA expect Spark Sessions to include attendees from a broad range of professional levels and areas of expertise, from the C-suite to manager, from research and development to procurement and human resources.

A key relationship-building strategy at Nexus is establishing a common understanding of relevant industry subjects through educational programming. An extension of the baking industry’s largest educational forum, IBIEducate will provide Nexus attendees with hands-on learning workshops, industry trends presentations and business needs discussions. Educational sessions will include breakout groups that encourage active participation.

The Industry Collab pillar of Nexus creates the space for the industry to work together. BEMA and ABA plan to conduct various member meetings during Nexus in addition to networking events where industry members can interact in less formal settings.

The Industry Collab pillar will also empower the next generation of baking industry professionals. Nexus will provide an entry point for those attendees to learn from others, share their experiences and develop their professional skills.

Anchored by BEMA and ABA’s experience and connections in all facets of wholesale bakery manufacturing, Nexus will bring attendees of all levels, skillsets and company types together in one place with a common goal. With the 2023 event in Dallas, participants can also look forward to an easily accessible downtown location. 

“The future of the baking industry is bright, and BEMA and ABA are excited to shine a light toward that future at Nexus,” said Robb MacKie, president and CEO, ABA.

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