German fairs abroad: “Made in Germany” United

The “German Pavilions” of the German economics ministry help not only exhibiting SMEs. They also boost the prestige and pulling power of trade fairs.

German Pavilion at SMM India in Mumbai. (Photo: Hamburg Messe und Congress)
German Pavilion at SMM India in Mumbai. (Photo: Hamburg Messe und Congress)

In 2013 Messe Frankfurt is organising 20 German group stands at trade fairs abroad– among others at Automechanika Dubai from 11 to 13 June. There the German Pavilion with a space of 2,200 square metres and over 70 exhibitors will again make a strong showing. “Dubai has long been the region’s most important trade hub for car parts and accessories,” observes Detlef Braun. “At the same time, it is a popular meeting place for trade visitors from other markets,” the Managing Director of Messe Frankfurt refers to the Middle East, Africa, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan , Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. State assistance plays a major role for participation in the German Pavilion. “And funding is not the sole decisive factor,” deliberates Braun. “Practical assistance is particularly important for SMEs who are keen to export.” 

Advice and services are crucial especially for those exhibiting at a trade fair abroad for the first time. “This includes help with organising, logistics and travel bookings, administrative issues, overcoming language barriers and on-site support,” says Detlef Braun. For larger companies pavilions are an ideal way to enter a growth market: “Once they have gained a foothold, they often book a stand of their own at the next fair via local partners.” The managing director sees the German Pavilions as a valuable addition to the event due to their uniform presentation and pooling of offerings. “Also, they get local small and medium-sized companies interested in exhibiting,” points out Braun
(www.messefrankfurt.com).  

“Practical assistance is particularly important for SMEs who are keen to export,” points out Detlef Braun. (Photo: Messe Frankfurt)
“Practical assistance is particularly important for SMEs who are keen to export,” points out Detlef Braun. (Photo: Messe Frankfurt)

And Dubai is also a prime location for other organisers. “We have been organising the largest German Pavilion for some years at ArabLab, an international laboratory and instrumentation trade show,” reports Dirk Lauterbach of NürnbergMesse. “There we tend to over 110 German companies   on a floor space of over 1,500 square metres.” The stand owes its popularity to Dubai’s role as a trade hub of the region, confirms Lauterbach, who is Director International Pavilions. Trade-friendly customs, import and export regulations boost Dubai’s hub function as well as immigration regulations without too much red tape. In total, NürnbergMesse has notched up 41 orders to organise shows this year – both own and third-party events. The rationale behind this is quite simple: “German industry associations analyse the target countries and their exhibition markets and then pinpoint and opt for a specific event,” explains Dirk Lauterbach. “Hence they make an important preselection for companies that are willing to exhibit.”  

 
 
 
 

The all-inclusive package of the German Pavilions “guarantees exhibitors a high-quality trade show presence,” says NürnbergMesse. “In addition the “made in Germany” umbrella brand arouses interest in many visitors.” Small and medium-sized companies benefit from joining forces with prolific market leaders from Germany and their pulling power. And organisers benefit, too: “Being accepted in the German Trade Fairs Abroad programme is an important mark of distinction for a trade fair,” Dirk Lauterbach points out the prestige factor. “The many advantages of the pavilions also help establish a trade fair abroad, of course.” Especially at recent events German pavilions have been proven to attract exhibitors from other countries, as well – be it official national participations or a stronger presence of international companies (www.nuernbergmesse.de). 

German Pavilion at Analitica Latin America in Sao Paulo – organised by NürnbergMesse. (Photo: NürnbergMesse)
German Pavilion at Analitica Latin America in Sao Paulo – organised by NürnbergMesse. (Photo: NürnbergMesse)

Deutsche Messe , Hanover, witnessed a particularly strong national showing at the IT trade show CeBIT Bilisim Eurasia in Istanbul. The same goes for PTC Asia, the power transmission and fluid technology show, and Domotex Asia/ChinaFloor for floor coverings in Shanghai. The subsidiary Hannover Fairs International organises both own events of Deutsche Messe and external shows. “We look after all the communication with the host, negotiate the terms and conditions, positioning and stand concept,” explains Andreas Luttmann, General Manager of Hannover Fairs International. “Exhibitors not only receive support with stand construction but also with getting their exhibits to the venue.” Exhibits are often transported on a joint consignment basis by internationally experienced transport companies. In addition, there is a contact for exhibitors in Hannover – who is on site to look after their needs during the shows.  

“Another factor that should not be underestimated is the close communication between co-exhibitors,” says Andreas Luttmann. (Photo: Deutsche Messe)
“Another factor that should not be underestimated is the close communication between co-exhibitors,” says Andreas Luttmann. (Photo: Deutsche Messe)

Particularly small and medium-sized companies appreciate the pavilion concept: “They often do not have the resources to organise a stand of their own at a fair abroad,” says Andreas Luttmann. Deutsche Messe also takes charge of visitor canvassing. Further fringe activities such as the embassy reception as an evening event help the participating companies, and hence the event as a whole. “Moreover, the pavilion is a central meeting place for political delegations and journalists,” says Luttmann. Another factor that should not be underestimated is the close communication between co-exhibitors, which can spawn business partnerships (www.messe.de).  

Hamburg Messe und Congress (HMC) only just staged SMM India in Mumbai for the third time in early April. Supported by the German ministry of economics and technology, ten companies took part in the group pavilion. “ The exhibition space of the German Pavilion at SMM India was slightly larger than at the 2011 event,” reports CEO Bernd Aufderheide. “The “made in Germany” presence is always one of the most attractive areas and draws many visitors.” Four companies exhibited at the German Pavilion again this year and can therefore be deemed “repeat offenders”. In general, the concept of HMC is to present national exhibitors in groups. “We are happy that companies are increasingly taking the opportunity to join forces in national pavilions at SMM India,” says Aufderheide. In 2013 Germany and four other countries took part in national pavilions at the maritime fair: Denmark, China, Finland and Argentina (www.hamburg-messe.de). 

 
 

Author: Peter Borstel

This article was published in TFI issue 2/2013

 
 

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