What do you need for a successful fair presence in India?

It is not really advisable to take a German exhibition stand to India without making adjustments. However, you should not be overcautious when entering a new market. Six tips will make life easier for you.

Photo: Rudra Kanta Dutta
Photo: Rudra Kanta Dutta

Rudra Kanta Dutta
Director Holtmann India Desk

Present yourself adequately

Your stand size should reflect the importance of your company. If your company is a market leader in Europe, a 20 square metre stand will not suffice for an adequate presence in India. Exhibitors benefit from favourable rates in India –stand rents there are 20 to 30 per cent lower than in Europe.

Adjust design and materials

Stand designs in India are rather similar to those in Germany. Straight, clean lines dominate. In India it is also advisable to add a few surprising elements, if you want to stand out from the competition. But you need to be careful when choosing materials. Plywood, which is almost an inevitable choice for many stands in Europe, looks cheap and old-fashioned to Indian visitors.

Clarify locational issues

More and more centres for international fairs in India are now very well equipped, air-conditioned and easy to reach. However, the exhibitor needs to be aware of specific constraints in hall design – which may have an impact on your stand. It is normally not possible to suspend ceiling danglers, as most halls have no fixation points. If you fail to take account of such details, you may face expensive last-minute design adjustments.

India Gate in New Delhi. (Photo: TFI)
India Gate in New Delhi. (Photo: TFI)

Plan your time effectively 

At German fairs exhibitors normally have five days or more for setting up their stands, while in India the set-up period is only two to three days. This requires a well-organised project management and more staff on site. Indian companies often plan their trade fair appearances at much shorter notice. Stand builders often work round the clock in shifts using pre-fabricated elements to work as swiftly as required. Hence, it makes sense for German companies to ask for regular updates on the project status.

Take advantage of local contacts

It is important to have a network of local partners with experience and testimonials from European exhibitors. This will ensure that exhibitors have the right personnel and that construction elements and stand furnishings are delivered on time.

Have it built on site

In general, there is no need to ship your stand. It is normally much cheaper to have it built on site. Only your exhibits need to be shipped or flown to India. In exceptional cases this is also advisable for particularly elaborate models or stand design components that need to be absolutely uniform world-wide.

The Langenhagen-based fair specialist Holtmann has launched an India Desk for German companies who want to exhibit in India. It also supports Indian exhibitors and implements their stands in Germany – such as the Indian pavilion at Hannover Messe 2015. 


This article was published in TFI issue 5/2015


Share in Facebook, Twitter or Google+:

Twitter aktivieren
Google+ aktivieren

TFI - Trade Fairs International - The International Trade Fair Magazine.

© 2006 - 2023 by TFI-Verlagsgesellschaft mbH. All rights reserved. TFI-Verlagsgesellschaft mbH shall accept no responsibility for the contents of external links and other contents.



  • How can networking be made to work at online events?

    How can networking be made to work at online events?

    Networking typically happens at real, in-person events. But it’s also possible to do it online; it just works a little differently. There are various options available to organisers.

  • How can exhibitors stand out at trade fairs?

    How can exhibitors stand out at trade fairs?

    New products and a well-conceived stand design are not the only drivers for a successful presence. Many other factors are also important, but trade fair planners often lose sight of them.

  • How can industry decision-makers be reached online?

    How can industry decision-makers be reached online?

    Trade fairs and trade fair companies need to constantly further develop, become more agile and flexible and offer services all year round. New, digital offerings are very important here. With its TrustedTargeting technology, Messe München offers its customers access to leading business-to-business decision-makers on the Internet.