NürnbergMesse: Innovation Campaign Provides Boost
The NürnbergMesse Annual Results Press Conference sent a positive signal: the company closed out 2017 as the highest-revenue odd-numbered year in its history, with sales of EUR 205.5 million – according to CEO Peter Ottmann, “well above our expectations. The main reason is that our employees are so innovative. We owe them a great debt of thanks.” He added, “we’ll also be getting a valuable boost in 2018 from our innovation campaign. All by themselves, 17 new events in Nuremberg and around the world give an impressive demonstration of the NürnbergMesse Group’s ability to innovate.” Ottmann foresees a new sales record for NürnbergMesse in 2018.
- 2017 consolidated balance sheet: highest-revenue odd-numbered year in NürnbergMesse history, well above expectations
- 2018 events year: indications of a new sales record
- Innovation theme: new trade fairs and conferences, growth through internationalisation and intensified digitalisation
Before going into the excellent key figures for events and finances, Ottmann devoted his opening remarks at the corporate press conference to his seriously ill fellow CEO, Dr Roland Fleck. “Our first thoughts today of course are with him and his family, and we all wish him a thorough recovery. But until that time we’ll keep working hard to make sure he can be proud of us.”
Ottmann and Dr Fleck are also especially proud of the staff’s achievements in fiscal 2017, the highest-revenue odd-numbered year in the company’s history. At 177 events (2015: 161) of the NürnbergMesse Group, 27,829 exhibitors (2015: 27,147) met 1,191,907 visitors (2015: 1,227,541) on 826,579 m² (2015: 875,000 m²) of total net space – figures that might lead one to miss the fact that 2017 initially portended a considerably less positive showing. That’s because every twelve years, NürnbergMesse faces the “cyclic phenomenon” in which a large number of major international trade fairs in Nuremberg all have scheduled hiatuses in the same year. As Ottmann reported, of course the company’s economic and business performance plans allowed for that factor – yet as it turned out, a considerable economic tailwind came into play: “Innovative trade fairs and conferences are our core business. But what’s crucial is whether and how the market accepts them. Here we got support from the persistence of a positive economic environment, the on-going internationalisation of NürnbergMesse, and the continuous improvement in the quality of our events and infrastructure in our home location.” All in all, in 2017 alone NürnbergMesse invested more than EUR 42 million – a large share of which went into building the new Hall 3C. That structure is currently rising on the southern edge of the exhibition center. Meeting the highest standards of quality and energy efficiency, it will start trade fair operations for the first time in November 2018.
The many faces of innovation
Based on the key event figures from the first half, as Ottmann confirmed at the Annual Results Press Conference, 2018 is likely to be another year of superlatives. “If all goes as planned, we may well raise the bar even further from the sales record we set in 2016. We’re all working hard toward that goal. And looking at the future development of NürnbergMesse, decisions of considerable import have been made in the past few months.” He was referring, for example, to the fact that SPS IPC Drives, Europe’s leading exhibition for electrical automation, will be staying in Nuremberg for the long term – the relevant contracts with mesago Messe Frankfurt were signed just recently. Additionally, together with UBM, one of the world’s largest organisers of trade fairs, NürnbergMesse will be launching a joint venture for MedtecLIVE, the new forward-looking platform for medical technology, which will be held in Nuremberg for the first time from 21 to 23 May 2019. And the “Silk Road – Trading on New Routes” conference (Nuremberg, 25 July 2018), held in collaboration with the Bavarian Ministry of the Economy and the Nuremberg Chamber of Industry and Commerce, will spotlight a topic that is of major relevance to European companies in particular.
Internationalisation picks up further momentum
Ottmann furthermore continues to set a high priority on NürnbergMesse’s internationalisation strategy. “Even though protectionist trends are currently coming into fashion, flourishing trade between people and between nations is still far more attractive to us than punitive tariffs and trade barriers.” Which is why, he explained, NürnbergMesse is also vigorously expanding its international portfolio. The 2018 acquisition of the three Indian woodworking trade fairs INDIAWOOD, DELHIWOOD and MUMBAIWOOD was the biggest acquisition in the history of NürnbergMesse to date. Additionally, the Franconian exhibition company joined up with partners to form the Indian joint venture ExpoNova that acquired the HPCI show, the subcontinent’s biggest trade fair for all aspects of home and personal care products. In China, in cooperation with the Hanns Seidel Foundation, NürnbergMesse is integrating the topic of “educational export” into its current trade fairs. “‘Made in Germany’ stands for top quality worldwide. And it’s something that our international trade fairs and conferences especially profit from – no matter whether in Nuremberg, Shanghai, Mumbai or São Paulo. And incidentally, we’re turning out to be more successful at that in the current 2018 fiscal year than ever before.”