The special exhibition Decoration Unlimited was very green under the new motto "Mystic Vibes".
The special exhibition Decoration Unlimited was very green under the new motto "Mystic Vibes".

Frankfurt Trade Fair

Three trade fairs, one stop

For the international consumer goods industry, a visit to the trade fair alliance consisting of Ambiente, Christmasworld and Creativeworld is practically a must - and one that it is obviously happy to make.

"Celebrating Business Together" was the motto of this year's trade fair alliance of the global consumer goods industry, consisting of Ambiente, Christmasworld and Creativeworld. With an increase of ten per cent, 4 928 exhibitors presented their new products on more than 360 000 m² gross exhibition space. Around 140 000 visitors came to Frankfurt at the end of January - despite the Deutsche Bahn strike that lasted several days. A year ago, Messe Frankfurt reported 154 000 visitors.

The organisers see this major event for the consumer goods industry as a one-stop store for the sector with more than 170 participating countries and regions. The aim is to provide market participants with orientation, inspiration and solutions to current challenges as the most international networking and ordering platform.

The extent to which the industry accepts this offer to explore trends and inspiration can be seen, for example, in the increased internationality: three out of four trade visitors came from abroad. With a five per cent increase in international visitors compared to the previous year to a current 71 per cent, the mega trade fair topped the previous year's result.

Three trade fairs full of trends: special areas have bundled a look into the future for visitors.
Three trade fairs full of trends: special areas have bundled a look into the future for visitors. (Source: Dähne Verlag, Strnad)

The "trade fair trio in a class of its own" strengthens the industry in uncertain times, said Detlef Braun, Member of the Executive Board of Messe Frankfurt, taking stock after five days of the fair. He emphasised the importance of personal encounters and the inspiration that trade fairs provide.

The entire spectrum of the specialist retail trade was represented in Frankfurt. In addition, the three trade fairs attracted major buyers, including Dehner, Globus, Hornbach and Obi, for example. The fact that the trade regards Ambiente, Christmasworld and Creativeworld as a successful platform is also confirmed by Messe Frankfurt's visitor survey. In terms of satisfaction with the range of exhibits, this year's fairs also surpassed last year's: 94 per cent were satisfied with the quality and range of exhibitors compared to 93 per cent last year.

For BHB Managing Director Peter Wüst, it sounds like this: the fully booked trade fair alliance is "a stroke of luck for visitors: their stay at the trade fair will be more complex and, thanks to an extensive information programme on the topics of sustainability, lifestyle, design, new work, future retail and digital expansion of trade, even more attractive. At the same time, the trade fair network remains a real trend barometer for everyone involved with consumer goods." With regard to Christmasworld, Wüst explains: "DIY stores and garden centers are relevant sales points for customers for all topics relating to lifestyle, workstyle, Christmas and creative living in general. What's more, the sales period before Christmas is becoming increasingly important for the industry, and so is Christmasworld - which is another reason why a visit to the Frankfurt exhibition halls is practically a must for the industry."

Very satisfied voices were also heard on the exhibitor side. For Frank-Christian Hornig, Sales & Marketing Director Keter DACH, for example, Ambiente was "a complete success. Seeing business partners and colleagues from all over the world again after such a long break was simply great." The response to the trade fair innovations was overwhelming, "and the feedback on what our customers got to see in our 'secret innovation chamber' was unanimous: Curver showed the most innovations this year - on the stand and behind the scenes."

At the same time, Hornig observes that buyers have to manage many more product groups and suppliers than in the past. "As a result, they are increasingly tending towards full-range suppliers, i.e. suppliers with a particularly wide range of products. That is of course an advantage for us. The flip side of the coin is that people mainly buy what has always done well. New products have a harder time being listed, or they have to be really convincing all round."

The trade fair trio recorded an increase in exhibitors of 10 per cent.
The trade fair trio recorded an increase in exhibitors of 10 per cent. (Source: Messe Frankfurt Exhibition GmbH, Jens Liebchen)

In addition to exhibition halls full of inspiration, visitors were once again offered a sophisticated supporting programme. Here are two examples.

The Decoration Unlimited special exhibition was once again a must-see. Under the new motto "Mystic Vibes", the designer duo 2dezign showed how companies can set the scene at the point of sale. This year's colour theme of green was intended to evoke associations with freshness and fertility, security and harmony - always in relation to Christmas decorations thanks to selected exhibitor products. The promised wow effect certainly materialised.

A future-oriented focus of the supporting programme was on digital transformation. In the Digital Retail area presented by nmedia, leading online retail players such as EK Retail, Kaufland and nmedia provided practical information on new digital services for bricks-and-mortar retail and online business. In this context, the special presentation Digital Mobil Handel in cooperation with the Mittelstand-Digital Zentrum Handel marked another premiere. Visitors were able to try out on site how the shopping experience can be enriched and personalised with the help of technological solutions.

Ambiente, Christmasworld and Creativeworld will continue to take place at the same time at the Frankfurt exhibition grounds in future. However, they will be moved to the beginning of February to ensure that the dates of the fairs are aligned. In addition, the order of days for Creativeworld will be changed. All three leading trade fairs will now start on Friday, i.e. on 7 February next year. Ambiente and Christmasworld will end on 11 February 2025, Creativeworld one day earlier.

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