Winning QB Peyton Manning Urges Business Audience to Stay Competitive

Football superstar shares advice at largest promotional products  trade show of summer

CHICAGO, IL – July 16, 2015 – Fresh off scoring another career-defining ESPY Award, Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning hit the stage running on Thursday, pitching business tips as fast as he throws footballs to a rapt audience at ASI Show® Chicago.

“Excellence doesn’t happen by chance,” said the 6-foot-5 Super Bowl champion, the brother of football superstar Eli Manning and son of the legendary Archie Manning. “In today’s business world, you may need to change your strategy, but you can’t change your vision. You have to be ready to compete and never get too comfortable.”

Manning, who surpassed Brett Favre with career touchdown No. 509 last season, was named Best Record-breaking Performance of the past year by ESPY voters Wednesday night. Thursday, he flew to Chicago for the ASI Show at McCormick Place, attended by 655 exhibitors and nearly 4,425 distributors from 44 states and 10 countries, including 499 women- and minority-owned companies and 135 Chicago-based companies. All told, 26 companies also chose ASI’s show to host their sales meetings.

Continuing last year’s winning streak, attendance at ASI’s 2015 Chicago show was up nearly 3% over 2014.

Mixing personal sports stories, jokes about his career as a product pitchman and tips on becoming a better leader, the 14-time Pro-Bowler and five-time league MVP encouraged attendees to be game-changers at their companies by cultivating trust and through meticulous daily preparation.

“Don’t be stymied by change, be stimulated by it,” he said. “Be a master observer and look for things that aren’t evident to your competitors. That’s what I try to do when I call an audible. And invest in a coach that can help you continue to grow. I still want to be coached myself. When you stop wanting to be mentored, I think you’re in big trouble.”

Manning’s 40 minutes on stage included an interview by Timothy M. Andrews, president of ASI Show and president and chief executive officer of ASI. The presentation scored big-time with the audience of nearly 750 small-business owners, entrepreneurs and CEOs in the $21.5 billion promotional products industry, gathered for a three-day trade show, Tuesday, July 14-Thursday, July 16, hosted by the Advertising Specialty Institute® (ASI).

“The keynote was fabulous,” said Mike Foley, of Foley Enterprises (asi/195776). “You can tell he’s a great leader and, more importantly, a good person. Sports and business have a lot of similarities, and his speech solidified to us that you really have to pay attention to detail.”

“As we close out a very successful 2015 show season in the great city of Chicago, we’re already looking forward to 2016 and major improvements we’ve planned for California and New York City by introducing the new Engage hybrid format,” said Rita Ugianskis-Fishman, vice president and general manager of ASI Show. “In today’s business climate, it’s important to respond to a variety of business needs and offering suppliers and distributors more intimate gatherings is a wonderful option I’m sure everyone will benefit from.”

“The city of the big shoulders certainly embraced the promotional products industry throughout our show,” said Andrews. “We love Chicago and remain committed to another big three-day event here next July.”

Suppliers like Ryan Halvorsen of Quinn Flags (asi/80228) were happy with the chance to show off their latest products and pitch new campaign ideas to distributors.

ASI Show Chicago has been very good – very busy,” said Halvorsen. “We had a lot of good quality leads, asking a lot of specific questions about projects. Shows like this are great for building our brand.”

Distributors spent their time browsing booths throughout the 102,000-square-foot exhibit space steps from Lake Michigan. “We have about 30 people here this year and it’s always a great show,” said Dan Granick of Creative Promotional Products (asi/170669). “It gives us a chance to bring the entire group together to experience new products and technologies so we can share them with our clients for the winter season.”

On Wednesday, at a glittering black-tie event at the Grand Ballroom on historic Navy Pier, ASI announced winners of the 2015 Counselor® Awards, including The Magnet Group CEO Bill Korowitz as Person of the Year and Michael Nick from global supplier Senator as International Person of the Year.
The awards, chosen by editors of ASI’s award-winning Counselor magazine, recognize outstanding individuals and companies in seven categories.

ASI also celebrated Counselor’s Top 40 Distributor and Top 40 Supplier rankings – the largest companies in the industry based upon 2014 revenue. On the supplier side, alphabroder (asi/34063) was No. 1, with more than $800 million in North American ad specialty sales. For distributors, Staples Promotional Products (asi/120601) remains the largest firm in the industry.

Click here for video interviews from the Counselor awards and go to for more info.

Registration for the 2016 ASI shows (Orlando, Jan. 4-6 Dallas, Feb. 9-11 and Chicago next July 12-14) and the high profile keynote presentations will be available early August at

For information on exhibiting or sponsorship opportunities, contact Karen DiTomasso, vice president of sales, at [email protected].

Go to for complete coverage of the show, including blogs and videos from ASI’s on-site editorial team.

About ASI Show
The ASI Show Family of Events – ASI Show, fASIlitate, ASI Roadshow & Engage – fosters business-building relationships among ASI member distributors and suppliers, and includes options to meet the needs of the entire membership base. ASI Shows, the flagship series, are large-scale convention center trade shows held in Orlando, Dallas and Chicago. fASIlitate is a hosted buyer event that brings together the industry’s elite – top suppliers and million-dollar distributors – for three days of scheduled one-on-one meetings in resort venues across the country. The ASI Roadshow visits 40 top cities across the U.S. and Canada and gives distributors an opportunity to escort their top clients. Engage is a hybrid event combining the best of all event formats to offer two days of enhanced engagement among a select group of high-quality distributors and suppliers, and a third day allowing for regional attendance and end-buyer participation. Visit for more information about our full event portfolio.