On Oct. 2, A.R.E. (Association for Retail Environments) and POPAI (Point of Purchase Advertising International) merged to form a combined new association that will be rebranded in the coming months. The new association will provide expanded services, including research, education and networking to approximately 2,000 member companies on six continents. This page provides more details about the merger and will be updated as new information becomes available.

Learn about your new benefits in this one-hour webinar.

New Association Member Benefits

The New Association combines the best of both A.R.E. and POPAI to bring our members the ultimate organization by providing news, insights, research, education, industry recognition and networking events.

New for A.R.E. members

For more information on any of the benefits mentioned below visit

There are many ways to be involved and one of the ways is serving on a committee

  • Strategic in Focus (inc. Board of Directors, Strategic Planning, Nominating Committee, Producer Leadership Council)
  • Education & Canadian
  • Research
  • Tradeshow & Events
  • Women’s League

Global Opportunities
Stay connected with the International Retail Industry

  • Education & Research
  • Events
  • Recognition

Education Programs
Keep up with key industry topics and trends

  • POPAI University – POPAI University events provide members and non-members the opportunity to learn and become certified professionals.
  • Marketing at Retail Certification (MaRC) – certification and continuing education program for the in-store marketing industry

Network and compete with industry colleagues

  • OMA Award Competition & Celebration
  • East Coast Creative POP-UP Show
  • West Coast POP Show
  • Night of Honors awards recognition for industry achievements

Awards & Recognition
Showcase and recognize top global performers in the industry

  • Industry Hall of Fame
  • Creative Awards & Showcases
  • Outstanding Merchandising Achievement Award Contest (OMA)
  • Global Awards

POPAI offers an assortment of research including

  • 2012 Shopper Engagement Study & 2014 Mass Merchant Study
  • 2013 Size of Industry Study
  • 2015 Compliance Initiative Study

Journal of Shopper Research
Quality academic and commercial research that provides new knowledge and understanding of shopper behavior with the potential to improve business practices

Industry Insights
Stay tuned in to the happenings of the organization

  • Quarterly research newsletters
  • Industry presentations
  • Quarterly research webinars

Creative Gallery
The Creative Gallery provides members examples of the best of the best in POP displays

Marketing Opportunities
POPAI offers a variety of brand building opportunities for members

New for POPAI Members

Please note: Benefits that require database merges and/or password access are not immediately available.

For more information on any of the benefits mentioned below visit

There are many ways to be involved and one of the ways is serving on a Committee

  • Retailer Engagement
  • Designer Platform
  • Next Gen
  • Membership Engagement
  • Technology

Industry Partnerships
Members receive discounts, access or reports from top industry resources

  • LS:N Global
  • Institute for Trend Research
  • Chain Store Guide
  • Crittenden
  • WindowsWear PRO
  • Material Connexion

Industry Insights
Keep on top of important business, economic and industry trends

  • Crittenden Retail Tenants report
  • Economic Advisor
  • Trend Report
  • Retail Environments Insights Center website and weekly Insights e-newsletter
  • LinkedIn Network
  • Industry Performance Report – proprietary report
  • Employee Compensation and Benefits Report – proprietary report

Retail Environments Magazine
Member products, projects and news are featured in magazine. Ad discounts are available for members.

Supplier Connect
An online and print sourcing list for retailers, designers and industry professionals at large. Members receive free listing and have access to reasonably priced upgrades. *Available to POPAI Members starting 2016

A.R.E. Connect
Participate in the private member-to-member online community *Available to POPAI Members starting 2016

Sponsor or attend one of the many events produced or sponsored by A.R.E.

  • Shoptalk
  • Industry Summit
  • Retail Design Collective
  • Design Awards
  • GlobalShop

As non-profit 501 (c )3 educational Foundation administered by A.R.E., PAVE is the educational foundation for the retail environments industry.

The 2016 Marketing Planner A.R.E. offers a variety of brand building opportunities for members.

Frequently Asked Questions: A.R.E. & POPAI merger

What will the new association be called?

The combined association will be rebranded with a new name in the coming months. In the meantime, the new association will use a temporary logo featuring both current association names: A.R.E./POPAI.

How many members will the combined association have?

A.R.E. currently has 740 member companies, primarily in the U.S. and Canada, and POPAI has more than 1,400 worldwide, with almost 200 in North America. Our combined membership will now be upwards of 2,100 member companies.

Who is leading the new association?

A new combined board of directors has been named with members representing both organizations. The new board will meet in November during the first joint Industry Summit at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation in Florida. Serving as officers are: Chairman Bob Rosean, TJ Hale; Vice Chairman Bob Zanotti, Process Retail Group; Treasurer Joel Katterhagen, Synsor; and Immediate Past Chairman David Abramson, Rapid Displays.

How will the new association staff be organized?

POPAI is based in Chicago and A.R.E. is based in Hollywood, Fla. We will continue to operate from both locations, with our official headquarters in Chicago. A.R.E.’s executive director Todd Dittman has been acting executive director over both associations since the approved member merger vote in July.

What changes can members of A.R.E. and POPAI expect to see?

The new association will combine the services and products from both associations resulting in expanded services, including research, education and networking, to approximately 2,100 member companies on six continents.

What benefits will members receive?

Initially, members from both associations can immediately begin to take advantage of resources, educational offerings and partner discounts that the other provides. Over time, as databases are merged, all members will be able to access private services currently limited to membership in the respective association, such as listings in A.R.E.’s Supplier Connect and access to the Creative Gallery at POPAI.

Why did the two associations merge?

The architects of the merger from both associations saw it as an opportunity to gain value-added benefits for members of each organization as well as provide greater services to the retail environments industry as a whole. As retail continues to undergo immense change, we see a blurring of services offered by POP producers, branding, marketing, design, retail design suppliers, and visual merchandising. This is an opportunity to join together to provide end-to-end services, education, and events to help retailers connect with shoppers every step of the way.

How are the two associations different?

A.R.E. is the leading North American association for suppliers to the retail environments industry. Celebrating its 60th year, A.R.E. began as the National Association of Store Fixture Manufacturers (NASFM) and was rebranded A.R.E. when it merged with the National Association of Display Industries (NADI) in 2008. Members include retail design firms and suppliers of store fixtures, visual merchandising products, materials, equipment and services.

POPAI, with more than 1,400 member companies in 60 countries and 18 global chapters, is the largest global association for the retail industry. Founded in 1936, POPAI will soon celebrate its 80th anniversary. Members represent fortune 500 brand manufacturers and retailers as well as marketing at retail producer companies and advertising agencies.



A.R.E./POPAI: The New Association Board


Bob Rosean, TJ Hale Co., Chairman

Bob Zanotti, Process Retail Group, Vice Chairman

Joel Katterhagen, Synsor, Treasurer

David Abramson, Rapid Displays, Immediate Past Chairman

Board Members
Nicki Albrecht VIDpro Inc.
Bruce Barteldt Little
Bill Benson Extrude-A-Trim Inc.
Harry Cunningham Vera Bradley
Louis Dorado Walgreens
Lisa Fekete Modern Woodcrafts
Jerrold Fox Bish Creative Display
Robert Frackelton Reeve Store Equipment
Denis Gibney Frito-Lay
Brad Green The Integer Group
Tony Mancini Global Visual Group
Pierre-Alain Weill WeillRobert PLV