Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Written by John Packard

Last night for me in Maine. It’s been a wonderful long weekend to escape some of the heat of Florida for a few days. I will be traveling most of the day tomorrow and I will be back in my office on Tuesday for the balance of the week before leaving for Minnesota.

We will be sending out a very detailed look at our 2018 SMU Steel Summit Conference agenda and what we are expecting out of our speakers/panelists. We will begin the conference on Monday afternoon, Aug. 27, at 1:30 PM. The conference will be held in its entirety in the Georgia International Convention Center as there is remodeling work being done to the meeting facilities at the Marriott Gateway hotel next to the GICC. This means our two networking/cocktail parties will be held in the convention center from 4 PM to 5:30 PM on Monday (sponsored by SDI) and Tuesday (sponsored by Heidtman). There will be plenty of time to go to the networking events and then make it to your dinner reservation in downtown or Midtown Atlanta.

If you have not yet booked your hotel, I highly recommend that you book the Atlanta Airport Marriott Hotel (not the Marriott Gateway Hotel). We will be providing a shuttle to and from the convention center from this hotel, which is located about one mile from the convention center. I believe the SMU rate is $159 per night.  The Gateway hotel room blocks are sold out.  If you are having any hotel issues, please contact Jill Waldman at

steel 201I was speaking to one of our members on Friday about our training workshops. It happened that this head of purchasing had attended one of our Steel 101 workshops. As we discussed what we have coming up for steel training workshops, he realized he would benefit from our Steel 201: Introduction to Advanced High Strength & Other New Steels workshop (as would most buyers or salespeople who have any automotive or critical part exposure). The workshop will be held on Sept. 11 & 12, 2018, in Middletown, Ohio.

This is the first Steel 201 workshop for SMU. We are working with AK Steel and are excited at what we will be offering to our attendees. The workshop will be conducted at the AK Steel Research and Innovation Center (RIC) instead of a hotel conference room. We will get to tour the Research and Innovation Center on Tuesday and then tour the AK Steel Middletown fully integrated steel mill on Wednesday, Sept. 12. You can learn more about the workshop agenda, instructors, etc., on our website or by contact me at or by phone at 800-432-3475.

We will be sending out the mid-July survey on Monday at 8 AM ET. If you receive an invitation to participate, please take a few minutes to answer the first question at the end of the invitation, which will then take you to the rest of the survey.

As always, your business is truly appreciated by all of us here at Steel Market Update.

John Packard, President & CEO

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