Top 10 Exhibit Companies in Chicago for Booth Designs & Rentals - aplusexpo

Top 10 Exhibit Companies in Chicago for Booth Designs & Rentals


Welcome to the ultimate guide on exhibit companies in Chicago! Whether you’re gearing up for a trade show or planning an exhibition, the Windy City is bustling with top-tier exhibit companies ready to transform your booth vision into a stunning reality. In this blog, we’ll delve into the crème de la crème of exhibit companies in Chicago, each bringing something unique to the table. Buckle up as we take you through a journey of creativity, innovation, and exceptional service in the realm of booth designs and rentals.

Company NameHeadquartersCustomers ServedRecommendation Level
Aplus ExpoLas Vegas (focus in Chicago)Over 10,000☆☆☆☆☆
Skyline ExhibitsChicago, IllinoisOver 5,000☆☆☆☆
BlueHive ExhibitsWorcester, MassachusettsOver 3,000☆☆☆
Optima GraphicsFenton, MissouriOver 7,000☆☆☆☆
MC²Chestnut Ridge, New YorkOver 8,000☆☆☆☆
NimlokDes Plaines, IllinoisOver 10,000☆☆☆☆☆
Absolute ExhibitsTustin, CaliforniaOver 4,500☆☆☆
2020 ExhibitsHouston, TexasOver 6,000☆☆☆
ProExhibitsFremont, CaliforniaOver 8,000☆☆☆☆
DerseMilwaukee, WisconsinOver 10,000☆☆☆☆☆

Aplus Expo

Aplus Expo

Aplus Expo:
Making Exhibition Easier

Founding Year: 2008

Headquarters: Las Vegas (with a key focus in Chicago)

Customers Served: Over 10,000

Service Strengths: Customized trade show booth designs and rentals, one-stop solutions

Distinguished in the realm of Chicago trade show exhibit rentals, Aplus Expo excels in devising tailored, interactive displays, recognizing the importance of transforming a trade show booth into an immersive experience. Catering to over 10,000 clients, their expertise lies in the seamless fusion of state-of-the-art technology and innovative design elements.

Aplus Expo is adept at providing solutions ranging from interactive high-tech kiosks to custom exhibits of striking visual appeal. Their dedicated team of designers and fabricators collaborates intensively, ensuring that every project, regardless of its scale, is executed with meticulous attention to detail. Aplus Expo is committed to delivering an integrated experience from the initial concept stage to the dismantling process, solidifying their reputation as a premier choice for trade show booth rentals in Chicago. They provide all kinds of sizes and styles of trade show booths, including 20×20, 10×20, and 10×10 trade show booths, as well as more special requirements, to fulfill various marketing needs.

Skyline Exhibits Chicago

Skyline Exhibits Chicago

Founding Year: 1980

Headquarters: Chicago, Illinois Customers

Served: Over 5,000

Service Strengths: Innovative designs, sustainable materials

Skyline Exhibits has been a reliable choice in the exhibition industry since 1980. They hold more than 100 patents for trade show exhibit design and deliver high-impact exhibits around the world to more than 3,500 brands each year. Moreover, their focus on innovative and sustainable booth designs consisting of eco-friendly materials has set them apart. It’s estimated that they recycled 175+ tons of materials in 2022. 

At Skyline Exhibits, “create custom exhibits, without the custom price tag” is their principle. They create a range of impressive displays, from portable trade show displays to large-scale custom trade show booths. In every project, Skyline’s commitment to quality and sustainability makes it one of the best choices for those looking for trade show booth design companies in Chicago.

BlueHive Exhibits

BlueHive Exhibits

Founding Year: 2005

Headquarters: Worcester, Massachusetts

Customers Served: Over 3,000

Service Strengths: Integrated marketing solutions, custom fabrication

Established with its central operations in Massachusetts and having marked its significance within the Chicago exhibition sector, BlueHive Exhibits has ascended to notable industry distinction since its inception in 2005. Their ascendancy is attributed to their comprehensive marketing solutions that extend beyond mere exhibit designs. They excel in crafting exhibitions that not only possess aesthetic appeal but also effectively encapsulate and convey the essence of the client’s branding narrative.

To date, BlueHive has rendered services to more than 3,000 clients. Their expertise in bespoke fabrication ensures the realization of exhibits that are not only distinct but also embody artistic ingenuity. For entities in pursuit of distinguished trade show exhibit design firms in Chicago, BlueHive differentiates itself with its all-encompassing strategy. Their philosophy recognizes that an exhibit is a strategic amplification of a brand’s identity, and they dedicate unwavering attention to detail to ensure every facet, from concept design to the articulation of the marketing message, is in harmony with the client’s broader marketing ambitions.

Nimlok Chicago

Nimlok Chicago

Founding Year: 1970

Headquarters: Des Plaines, Illinois

Customers Served: Over 10,000

Service Strengths: Customizable rental options, extensive inventory

Nimlok Chicago is good at offering customizable rental options for trade show booths. Founded in 1970 and headquartered in Des Plaines, Illinois, they have served over 10,000 customers. Their extensive inventory of trade show displays for rent allows clients to choose from a variety of styles and sizes.

Nimlok’s forte lies in its ability to tailor each exhibit to the specific needs of its clients, making it a prime candidate for those searching for trade show booth rentals in Chicago. Their team of experts guides clients through the design process, ensuring each exhibit is not just a booth, but a brand ambassador.

Optima Graphics

Optima Graphics

Founding Year: 1991

Headquarters: Fenton, Missouri

Customers Served: Over 7,000

Service Strengths: High-quality graphics, rapid turnaround

Optima Graphics, though headquartered in Missouri, is a significant player in the Chicago exhibit scene. They have been the go-to for companies needing high-quality graphics with a rapid turnaround since 1991. Serving more than 7,000 clients, they specialize in delivering eye-catching graphics for trade show exhibits and displays.

Their proficiency in printing and fabrication makes them a key resource for those seeking exhibit companies in Chicago. Optima’s commitment to quality and speed has made them a favorite, especially for businesses looking for last-minute additions to their trade show displays. Their ability to deliver under tight deadlines without compromising on quality is what sets them apart.



Founding Year: 1999

Headquarters: Chestnut Ridge, New York

Customers Served: Over 8,000

Service Strengths: Full-service solutions, innovative technology

MC², an esteemed agency heralded for its expertise in brand experience, boasts a legacy spanning nearly four decades in the realm of exhibit and tradeshow innovation. Renowned for its proficiency in sculpting captivating narratives and strategic storytelling, the agency predominantly focuses on transforming brand tales into enchanting, immersive experiences for tradeshows, exhibits, and assorted events. Acclaimed for their visionary and influential designs, MC² is a maestro in fostering brand trust and identity enhancement. Their global footprint, which includes pivotal operations in Düsseldorf, the Rhineland, and broader Europe, synergizes with their robust network in the United States, particularly in the bustling corporate and event spheres of Chicago.

In the heart of Chicago, a nexus for vibrant trade shows and high-profile conferences, MC² distinguishes itself through its unparalleled adaptability and unwavering dedication to client satisfaction. The agency is lauded for its agility in accommodating eleventh-hour adjustments, adeptly meeting nuanced client demands. Their repertoire extends across a spectrum of events, including trade fairs, roadshows, and stage presentations, positioning them as the preferred choice for Chicago’s business community in crafting impactful, lasting brand experiences. MC²’s allegiance to strategic storytelling and design excellence marks them as a significant force in the Chicago exhibition arena, whether catering to local functions or global stages.

Absolute Exhibits

Absolute Exhibits

Founding Year: 2000

Headquarters: Tustin, California

Customers Served: Over 4,500

Service Strengths: Turnkey solutions, global reach

Absolute Exhibits, founded in 2000, is renowned for its extensive expertise in providing comprehensive turnkey solutions for trade show exhibits, distinguishing itself in the global market. Headquartered in Tustin, California, the firm boasts a significant operational footprint in Chicago, catering to a diverse clientele that exceeds 4,500. Their acclaim stems from their adeptness in offering end-to-end solutions encompassing every aspect of exhibit creation, from initial concept development to the intricate logistics of execution.

This agency’s global reach and profound industry acumen position it as an exceptional choice for both local and international exhibitors aiming to establish a commanding presence in the Chicago market. Absolute Exhibits excels in the meticulous handling of all components of exhibit design and implementation, including the complexities of shipping, installation, and dismantling, thus delivering an effortless and efficient experience to its clients.

2020 Exhibits

2020 Exhibits

Founding Year: 1987

Headquarters: Houston, Texas

Customers Served: Over 6,000

Service Strengths: Custom exhibit designs, interactive technology

2020 Exhibits is a stalwart in the realm of exhibit design and technology since its inception in 1987, commands a significant presence in both Houston, Texas, and Chicago. The company, catering to an impressive roster of over 6,000 clients, excels in the art of fabricating custom exhibits that intertwine visual allure with interactive sophistication. Their prowess lies in seamlessly integrating avant-garde technology into their designs, thereby positioning themselves as a premier choice for those seeking innovative trade show booth design services in Chicago. The team at 2020 Exhibits is adept at sculpting experiences that not only draw in visitors but actively engage them, creating a deep and lasting impact in brand interaction.



Founding Year: 1987

Headquarters: Fremont, California

Customers Served: Over 8,000

Service Strengths: Innovative designs, end-to-end project management

ProExhibits, founded in 1987 and headquartered in Fremont, California, with a significant operational presence in Chicago, has established itself as a trailblazer in the exhibition industry. The company has catered to an extensive portfolio of over 8,000 clients, distinguishing itself through the creation of innovative design concepts and the provision of comprehensive project management services for trade show exhibits.

ProExhibits excels in overseeing the entire lifecycle of exhibit production, from the genesis of original design concepts to the meticulous execution of final installations. This all-encompassing approach positions them as a formidable entity among trade show exhibit companies in Chicago. The firm’s unwavering dedication to crafting unique and captivating exhibits has solidified its status as a paragon of excellence within the sector.



Founding Year: 1948

Headquarters: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Customers Served: Over 12,000

Service Strengths: Long-standing experience, strategic marketing integration

Derse is an esteemed entity with its foundational roots in Milwaukee and a substantial presence in Chicago, has been a paragon in the exhibit industry since its inception in 1948. Catering to an extensive clientele exceeding 12,000, Derse’s enduring presence in the market underscores their profound expertise and steadfast reliability. Their prowess extends beyond mere construction of exhibits; they are adept in the integration of strategic marketing principles within their designs. This acumen makes Derse an exemplary choice for those in pursuit of a seasoned trade show exhibit design company in Chicago. Their unique capability to interlace marketing strategies with exhibit design ensures that each project not only showcases but also effectively communicates the client’s brand ethos, thereby creating a more impactful and resonant experience.

Chicago’s Unique Venue Options for Exhibitors

As North America’s third-largest metropolis, Chicago unfolds a vast array of exhibition venues, each replete with distinctive features. The city’s premier attraction, McCormick Place, renowned as the largest convention center in the continent, boasts voluminous spaces tailored for substantial trade shows and exhibitions. This iconic establishment, equipped with cutting-edge facilities, is a magnet for large-scale, global events, attracting a plethora of exhibitors and visitors worldwide.

In stark contrast to McCormick Place’s magnificence, Chicago also offers a selection of more intimate venues, ideally suited for smaller, specialized events. These locales, spanning from historical edifices to contemporary boutique spaces, offer a unique and bespoke ambiance, facilitating exhibitors in crafting more concentrated and captivating experiences for their attendees.

McCormick Place

Moreover, the city’s versatile open-air spaces, such as the idyllic Grant Park and Navy Pier, provide unparalleled opportunities for outdoor exhibits and events, marrying the architectural splendor of the city with the quaint charm of its lakeside location. These settings are especially popular in the warmer seasons, fostering an engaging experience that merges the city’s allure with the lively atmosphere of alfresco gatherings.

For trade show booth rental entities in Chicago, this diversity in venues represents an expansive canvas to exhibit their innovative designs and technological mastery. Their ability to adapt to varying spaces and audience magnitudes compels these companies to continuously innovate and enhance both the aesthetic and functional aspects of their exhibits, ensuring each display is not only visually arresting but also efficaciously communicates the essence of the brand.

To conclude, the eclectic assortment of exhibition venues in Chicago, ranging from the gargantuan McCormick Place to more quaint, character-rich locations, provides a dynamic and versatile platform for exhibitors to manifest their visions. This diversity caters adeptly to the logistical requirements of assorted event types and concurrently augments the overall experience for both exhibitors and participants.

Chicago’s Top Annual Trade Shows

Known as a bustling hub for commerce and innovation, Chicago annually plays host to an array of prestigious trade shows like the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) and the Pack Expo. These events, including the Chicago Auto Show and the National Restaurant Association Show, cater to diverse sectors, reflecting the city’s multifaceted economic fabric. These platforms not only unveil groundbreaking technologies but also facilitate international business connections and provide insights into evolving industry trends. The city’s strategic location, world-class facilities, and rich cultural tapestry create an ideal environment for showcasing products, engaging potential clients, and expanding market reach.

For exhibit companies in Chicago, these annual gatherings represent significant opportunities to showcase their design and execution prowess. Tailoring their services to meet the specific demands of varied industries, these firms demonstrate their capability to create compelling, innovative exhibits that resonate with a global audience. This ability is a testament to the expertise and creativity inherent in Chicago’s exhibition industry, highlighting the city as a hub for cutting-edge design and impactful brand presentations.

In summary, Chicago’s top annual trade shows are not merely economic events but dynamic forums that spotlight the city’s role as a global stage for commerce, technology, and culture. These gatherings underscore Chicago’s status as a critical nexus for international business connections, driving innovation and reinforcing its position as a key player in the global exhibition and trade show arena.


The selection of an exemplary exhibit company in Chicago, while challenging, becomes a more navigable endeavor with the aid of this detailed guide. Each entity among the top 10 firms enumerated herein possesses its own distinctive blend of strengths and specialized knowledge. This diversity ensures that your requirements for booth design and rental are addressed with a high degree of professionalism and creative acumen. It is imperative to recognize that the cornerstone of a triumphant exhibit lies in the foundation of a synergistic partnership. Rest assured, these Chicago-based companies are poised to deliver unparalleled excellence, transforming your trade show or exhibition vision into a tangible and impactful reality.

As a leader in bespoke and eclectic trade show booth designs, Aplus offers comprehensive, turnkey solutions and seamless value-added services. We invite you to contact Aplus for your exhibition needs in Chicago.

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