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NRF's 101st Annual Convention draws record 25,500 attendees

The National Retail Federation said attendance to its recent annual Big Show convention broke all previous records, attracting 25,500 attendees from around the globe.

By comparison, its same event last year drew 22,500 guests.

Held at New York City's Jacob Javits Convention Center, NRF's 2012 Annual Convention and Expo - which this year marked its 101st anniversary - took place January 15 through 18.

NRF President and ceo Matthew Shay explained that this year's event's success was due "in large part to our committed retail members, who attend the convention every year; the leading retail service providers, who ensure an amazing experience on the Expo floor and at our sessions; and our amazing team, many of whom work year-round to ensure that the thousands of attendees we welcome at Retail's Big Show have a great experience."

Also key was President Bill Clinton, who welcomed "a packed main hall," NRF noted, with more than 4,000 attendants to hear him speak on the topic, "Embracing Our Common Humanity."

Macy's chairman, president and ceo Terry Lundgren and Whole Foods co-ceo Walter Robb, the latter of whom was named the winner of NRF's Innovator of the Year award, also drew large crowds for their respective presentations on a variety of topics, including the economy, consumer spending, sustainability and mobile retailing.

NRF added that its convention "wasn't the only thing setting records this year," as its "Retail's BIG Blog" had a total of 47,000 page views during the four-day event -- up from 37,000 last year. NRF's mobile app was also "immensely popular."

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