WESLACO, Texas – The largest ever gathering in Las Vegas of representatives from Rio Grande Valley economic development corporations will occur in the coming days.

Fifteen different Valley entities will be attending the Innovating Commerce Serving Communities (previously known as the International Council of Shopping Centers) “ICSC Here, We Go, 2021” trade show at the Las Vegas Convention Center from Dec. 5 thru 7.

On Sunday, all 15 will attend a reception at the Bellagio hosted by the Rio Grande Valley Partnership. 

“Multiple RGV economic developers and investors are attending the International Council of Shopping Centers “ICSC” conference in Las Vegas to highlight the retail, hospitality and investment strength in the Rio Grande Valley,” explained Sergio Contreras, president of the RGVP.

Sergio Contreras

“Our RGV EDCs will connect with the change-makers at ICSC who are transforming the places and spaces where we shop, dine, work, play and gather in our communities.”

Discussing the RGVP’s reception at the Bellagio, Contreras said: “In collaboration with the regions economic influencers, the RGV Partnership is a hosting a reception to gather prior to the start of the conference.ICSC is expected to host over 1,000 retailers, 10,000 attendees and 400 exhibitors.”

The 15 Valley cities and EDCs attending the ICSC event are: Starr County Industrial Foundation, Rio Grande City EDC, Mission EDC, the City of McAllen, Pharr EDC, San Juan EDC, Alamo EDC, Weslaco EDC, Harlingen EDC, Greater Brownsville Incentives Corporation, Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation, San Benito EDC, Elsa EDC, Edinburg EDC, and Palmview Municipal Development District.

Contreras said the retail industry should be looking at the Valley because it is growing fast.

“Thanks to the business friendly environment that we have in Texas, the RGV continues to see explosive growth at every turn – with multiple residential and retail developments in each of our local municipalities.In fact, RGV retail taxable sales in 2018 were at $12.7 billion. They are projected to be close to $15.2 billion in 2021. RGV bank deposits in 2018 were at $14.3 billion and at $17.5 billion in 2020. We expect the 2021 bank deposits to be higher.”

Contreras added: “The RGV Partnership board of directors and its members, thank all economic developers, entrepreneurs and investors that help drive the economy of the RGV.”

Founded in 1957 and headquartered in New York, ICSC says it is the global trade association of what it calls the “marketplaces industry.” According to the ICSC website, the purpose of the group is to promote and elevate the marketplaces and spaces “where people shop, dine, work, play and gather as foundational and vital ingredients of communities and economies.”

The group says it offers this value proposition: “ICSC produces experiences that create connections and catalyze deals; aggressively advocates to shape public policy; develops high impact marketing and public relations that influence opinions; provides an enduring platform for professional success; and creates forward-thinking content with actionable insights — all of which drive industry innovation and growth.”

Editor’s Click here to watch a video ICSC produced.

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