(Germany) – imm cologne and LivingKitchen will return to a live event.
On 18 January 2021, imm cologne and LivingKitchen will open. With 70% of the hall space already been booked, the event team behind the show believe it is important to offer the industry a secure platform on which it can maintain its position on the international market and address the subject of home living. “We want to blaze a bold trail into the new normal together with the industry,” says Matthias Pollmann, Koelnmesse’s Vice President Trade Fair Management.
“Given the present circumstances, this really is a very good registration figure,” continues Pollmann. “Compared with previous months, we are also currently seeing increased interest overall in holding live trade fairs. The motivating realisation is gaining ground that real-life interactions between people are essential when it comes to establishing and building business relationships.”
Exhibitors can expect a trade fair with high safety standards for all participants and a strong public appeal through the media and digital alternatives to reach those visitors who cannot take part in person. “Unfortunately, however, there is still uncertainty in the industry due to the repeated emergence of hotspots in Europe. That is why I am absolutely convinced that we need to start living the ‘new normal’ now. We can’t wait for a return of the old days. Instead, we have to be bold and shape the future together,” comments Pollmann.
To ensure the safety of exhibitors and visitors, Koelnmesse has worked in cooperation with the public authorities to develop #B-SAFE4business, a concept that makes provisions for all measures relating to hygiene, medical care and organisation. On top of that, Koelnmesse has drawn up a hygiene and infection control concept, which complies with the current provisions of North Rhine-Westphalia’s Corona Protection Ordinance and the requirements of the relevant health authority. Measures include discharging used air from the exhibition halls to the outside and drawing in entirely new fresh air so that aerosols cannot spread via our ventilation system.
“From my perspective, a successful restart does not necessarily call for a showcase consisting exclusively of innovations. What is crucial is being present at the fair with your products. In the interiors sector, where touch and feel and the ability to experience the products in person are particularly important, the cancellation of many industry trade fairs has stimulated a renewed need among trade visitors to attend the fair,” says Pollmann, describing the industry’s sentiment.
According to Pollmann, “Because its international business is largely focused on European buyers, the German furniture industry in particular can anticipate a high level of attendance from its export customers at imm cologne 2021.”
“It is not only the traditionally high proportion of prospective European customers that is fuelling our hopes for a satisfactory number of trade visitors,” says Claire Steinbrück. “Following the cancellation of ORGATEC, we also expect that architects in particular who had planned to visit that trade fair will now come to imm cologne instead.”
At the same time, the imm cologne team is also developing a hybrid event format for those participants unable to attend in person. “We will focus on extending our digital reach and will learn from the digital formats we are offering this autumn for gamescom and DMEXCO,” comments Pollmann. “Of course, it is in the nature of the interior design sector that its products are more difficult to present digitally than games are, for instance. Nevertheless, we are seeing some good concepts for streaming certain imm cologne events as well as top-class congress talks and discussions. Exhibitors will also be able to present their products digitally and thereby increase their reach. To supplement our digital matchmaking options, we are not only expanding the business opportunities available to our exhibitors but also reaching a broad spectrum of visitors.”