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WATCH: AAPEX…SEMA… What’s The Difference?

For one thing, both shows are strictly trade only, which means members of the general public do not attend.


AAPEX…. SEMA… What’s the difference? Counter Intelligence is next, sponsored by NGK.

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Hi guys, it’s Mark Phillips. If you’re just getting into the automotive aftermarket, you may be wondering… what’s the difference between AAPEX and SEMA? Well, I’m glad you asked!

The AAPEX show is co-owned by the Auto Care Association and the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association, the light vehicle aftermarket division of the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association. SEMA, on the other hand, is organized by the Specialty Equipment Market Association. AAPEX, which runs Tuesday, Oct. 31 through Thursday, Nov. 2, at the Sands Expo in Las Vegas, Nevada, features more than 2,200 exhibitors, 5,000 booths, 40 AAPEXedu sessions and approximately 44,000 targeted buyers. AAPEX attendees include auto parts retailers, auto parts warehouse distributors, jobbers, technicians, service chains, automotive dealers, paint and body personnel, and automotive aftermarket industry leaders and innovators.


SEMA runs from Tuesday, October 31 to Friday, Nov. 3, this year and is held at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The 2,400-plus exhibitors are primarily manufacturers of automotive accessories that enhance the performance, styling, comfort, convenience and safety of cars, trucks and SUVs. It’s known as the show featuring more performance-related products. SEMA is just a little louder than AAPEX. If happen to go to both shows, you might see some companies at both, with products more suited for either show.

Both shows are strictly trade only, which means members of the general public do not attend. This is all business, after all. But it’s also a whole lot of fun. So the next time someone asks, “What’s the difference between AAPEX and SEMA?” Now you know! I’m Mark Phillips and thanks for watching.



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