Citing the reception promised by the city and the new national focus on Gulf conservation, AFFTA’s Jim Klug announced that next year’s IFTD show will take place in New Orleans in mid-August 2011. In an exclusive interview with MidCurrent, Klug — an industry veteran who has worked on both the sales and marketing and product development side of the business for more than 25 years — said that it was time to shake off the perception of AFFTA as a group that follows the same strategy year after year.
“The last thing AFFTA members want to hear from us is that it’s business as usual,” Klug said. “We have a chance to leap forward now, and it may not come around again. New Orleans gives us a fresh venue, but more importantly I think it will reflect a changed mindset. We want to engage with the industry on multiple levels and put much more emphasis into delivering our message. That means putting our minds to work on creative ways to grow the sport and reaching new participants in ways that haven’t been tried before. New Orleans also happens to be a great fly fishing destination — one of the best in the world. Involving local guides and outfitters before and after the show is one way to say that we can do much more for fly fishing than simply filling a convention center.”[Interestingly, just after the announcement, Simms — who sat out of this year’s show — said they would be going to New Orleans. So it seems AFFTA may have a chance to build some momentum here.]
See the last part of our interview with Klug in the video below.