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EXHIBITOR Magazine's Corporate Profile Series: Xibeo
Xibeo is the exhibit house for corporations that value trust, integrity, and close oversight of their projects. "For us, it's all about knowing we've made a difference for our clients," says Theron Whitney, vice president and co-owner. The firm provides exhibits for both purchase and rental, sourcing solutions from a wide spectrum of possible material and fabrication options. Far from cookie-cutter, those solutions are recommended based on what will best suit their clients' unique requirements and help them meet their objectives.
Located in a 20,000-square-foot facility, Xibeo is large enough to provide whatever clients need but also small enough that every project receives hands-on and eyes-on management from one of the company's two principals, Whitney and his partner, Lauren Jayne, president and co-owner. The company's extensive menu of offerings includes award-winning, creative design services, custom exhibit rentals, fabrication services, trade show marketing support, turnkey services, on-site storage, and more. "With us, clients get more than just a sales rep. They get an entire company behind them," Jayne says.
Jayne and Whitney worked together at other companies before launching Xibeo in 2001. Whitney's specialty is sales and sales management, which he combines with a passion for customer service. Jayne's expertise is project management and operations. "Solving problems and streamlining processes are what's fun for me," she says. Together, the two run a well-rounded, high-performing, customer-centric company.
When it comes to custom rentals, Xibeo is a trendsetter, as it has been providing them since before custom-designed exhibit rentals became popular. The company has amassed a huge inventory of custom modular and rental properties that it uses to create unique solutions for clients. "We fabricate whatever components we don't have in inventory. But after 18 years in business, we already have almost everything we need at our fingertips," Whitney says.
Xibeo's custom rental offerings extend far beyond what clients receive in other companies' rental kits. For instance, Xibeo created a custom rental exhibit for Novation that showcased the company's synthesizers
in a ‘90s-style interactive arcade. Light, sound, touch, and color combined via interactive engagements that positioned Novation as a brand that's committed to innovation and creativity. The environment featured four arcade games, each of which integrated Novation products into an interactive experience. A dance game inspired by Dance-Dance Revolution merged 64 wall-mounted Novation Launchpad XL MkIIs with a dance floor comprising 64 additional Launchpads. Other experiences included a keyboard and mock cockpit that made attendees feel like they were sitting at the helm of a spaceship, and a cabinet game reminiscent of Pac-Man.
Another Xibeo specialty is double-deck exhibits. The company's vast experience enables its designers and fabricators to create innovative elements that wrap and hide the deck structure to give it a completely custom look, even when the deck is a rental. Xibeo applies this expertise to decks of all shapes and sizes - even round and oval structures. For example, the company designed an exhibit for Natural Balance Pet Foods Inc. that hid a storage area and deck behind a product display, graphics, reception area, and in-booth coffee bar.
Jayne and Whitney place a high value on relationships with both their clients and their employees. The duo's philosophy is, "Just be a good kid," which includes being honest, treating people with respect, and making sure everyone feels valued and appreciated. For clients, this means employees step in whenever they're needed. Whitney shares the example of a client who arranged his own direct shipping between shows in New York and San Antonio. When the exhibit got stuck in New York over the weekend and wouldn't make it to the second show on time, Xibeo saved the day. On a Saturday, the Xibeo team went to the storage facility of an exhibit house located in the show's host city, eyeballed its inventory, designed a rental solution from miscellaneous elements, and made it happen - literally overnight. The resulting exhibit was strong enough that the client opted to stick with the rental rather than swapping out his original exhibit when it arrived on the first day of the show. "We essentially pulled a 20-by-20-foot exhibit out of a hat," Whitney says.
For the Xibeo team, Jayne and Whitney exercise the "good kid" philosophy every day. They keep the Xibeo pantry and refrigerator stocked with milk, cereal, bread, and lunch meat so employees can make their own breakfasts and lunches. They bring in dinner when people have to work late - and have been known to fire up the company barbecue almost monthly. "This is more than a job to us, and we want our team members to feel the same way," Jayne says.
What Jayne and Whitney don't believe in is upselling. Xibeo gives its customers what they need, and the team isn't afraid to advise clients when something they've requested isn't going to provide a value in line with its cost. The result is a company and culture that Jayne and Whitney take pride in. In Jayne's words, "It's a joy to see what we've all accomplished together."
In addition to the work Xibeo performs for corporate clients, the company has very quietly amassed a fairly large clientele of exhibit houses, advertising agencies, and marketing agencies. These firms use Xibeo to supplement their own in-house capabilities or, in
the case of ad and marketing agencies, to offer services that are beyond their internal offerings." This is a white-label service, so we keep our contributions invisible," says Lauren Jayne, president and co-owner of Xibeo.
Those services include design, exhibit rental, and fabrication, as well as turnkey show services, graphic production, turnkey services, and management. According to one of these clients, "Partnering with Xibeo enables our firm to seamlessly provide clients with creative, high-quality exhibits. We get the margins we need, and our clients don't even realize that we have outsourced the work."
CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS: 701 N. Del Norte Blvd. #100, Oxnard, CA 93030
RFP CONTACT: Theron Whitney, vice president and co-owner
PHONE: 805-604-4409 EXT. 203
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