Two pre-conference sessions have been added to the programming for the first time at the 2017 VIBE Conference, a premiere beverage conference for chain beverage executives and supplier partners, at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina February 27 to March 1.

On February 27, Paul Saper, co-founder and chief executive officer of Sponsiv Digital Inc., will discuss “Drinking & Driving: Eliminating the Problem” from 2:45 to 3:40 p.m., with panelists Barry Givens, co-founder and chief executive officer of Monsieur; Brian Hughes, general manager of Uber; and David Kreitzer, general manager of Precision Kiosk Technologies.

“All of us in the industry have a responsibility to ensure restaurant patrons get home safely,” says Saper. “For most restaurants, that means continuous employee training, but now there is technology in place to help us become more proactive in limiting excessive consumption as well as facilitate getting customers home safely.”

Following this session, Patrick Kirk, vice president of bar & beverage of Applebee’s, will moderate ‘Best Practices as Viewed by Beer Industry National Account Suppliers’ from 3:45 to 4:45 p.m., featuring panelists Joe Abegg, director of casual dining—national accounts of MillerCoors; Josh Halpern, vice president of national retail sales—on premise & military of Anheuser-Busch; Alex Prieto, vice president of national accounts—on premise of Constellation Crown; and Scott Hempstead, director of national accounts—on premise of Boston Beer.

In addition to the Monday pre-conference workshops, the conference will host a keynote session, three general sessions, four workshop series, two award ceremonies and a number of networking opportunities.

Program highlights include:

Annual custom research study on the latest on premise adult beverage consumer prepared by Next Level Marketing.

Presentation on technologies and apps to drive new customers to your bar.

Special wine, beer, and spirits tastings.

Panel discussion with beverage industry experts on what it takes to continuously drive beverage revenue during key day parts, especially Happy Hour and Late Night.

Presentation on creating an unusual and extraordinary beer list that encourages street-level buzz.

And a discussion with NABCA staff on doing business in control states.

The 2017 VIBE Conference will honor the leading chain, hotel, casino and cruise line beverage programs at the VIBE Vista Awards and the Suppliers Awards presentation. Following the ceremony, VIBE Vista Awards winners will share their winning programs with attendees in a Q&A panel.

Beverage professionals interested in attending the 2017 VIBE Conference can register online. Early bird registration will save attendees $300 compared to on-site registration rates.

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