Virginia company wins high marks from grumpy ‘American Idol’ judge
- May 1, 2008
Pat Goeke, president of Nomadic Display in Springfield, is a fan of “American Idol” but not just for the singing. The national talent search competition is one of her company’s longstanding customers. “Idol” first purchased several “pop-up” displays back in 2002 for use as stage backdrops during the initial auditions that take judges and producers from city to city in search of talented competitors.
The pop-up display system, made of aluminum tubing, is the product that got Nomadic Display started back in 1975. It was considered revolutionary then and remains extremely popular with trade show vendors. “It’s great for anyone who is traveling and setting up displays because it’s easy to ship and easy to set up,” Goeke explains. “It’s something that you can pop up in a couple of minutes, and then you just put your graphics on and you’re good to go.”
Simon Cowell, the famous-ly grumpy judge who also is an “American Idol” producer, likes the product so much that he has purchased additional units for two other televised talent shows, “America’s Got Talent” and “The X Factor,” which airs in England.
Nomadic Display, which has 275 employees, owns manufacturing and sales facilities in the U.S., Ireland, England and Germany and relies on a global distribution network of more than 200 companies. It makes a large range of trade show and display products, but the pop-up remains its bread and butter offering. “We’ve really integrated that concept into a lot of the other products that we make,” says Goeke.
The company, whose customers also include AT&T, American Express and Coca-Cola, has enjoyed a consistent 10 percent growth rate for years. Goeke is projecting a 15 percent jump in revenues in 2008. “The trade show business is expanding around the world, so we’re expanding, too,” she says. That’s the kind of performance that prompts applause.