Autopromotec: 2013 show the largest ever

Autopromotec 2013’s organisers lauded the latest Bologna show, which took place in May and described it as “the largest and most international ever”. This is supported by a record-breaking number of exhibitors and the largest exhibition space ever – that is 1,512 exhibitors from 52 countries covering a total exhibition area of 156,000 square metres (20,000 of which outdoors). Visitor numbers were also huge – 102,536 attended in total, of which 83,594 from Italy and 18,942 from abroad.

Once again Autopromotec 2013 highlighted the strong international character that, over the last few years, has distinguished it. 39 per cent of the exhibitors come from all over the world (a total of 584 companies), with Germany, China, United States, France and Spain the most represented countries. This figure is even more significant if one considers that there was something like a 7.5 per cent of foreign exhibitors compared to the previous 2011 edition and that there is every reason to believe that this year the record in terms of number of foreign visitors will also be broken.

Exhibitor numbers were clearly good. And, as the organisers are quick to point out, the show remains strongly international. And as far as tyres and wheels are concerned, it is the largest show of its kind excluding Reifen. However, while it is difficult to be empirical about such things there was a definitely a feeling of space as one walked around the show. This could be a result of the credit crunch and the market sensitivity to speeding when cash flow is tight. But the organisers pointed out that they have been relatively successful in battling against this. It could be because of the large amount of space the show occupies across all business areas. It could be because of the extremely long show, which runs the best part of a week and across a weekend. Or it could simply mean that there were proportionally less people in attendance in the tyre and wheel zones.

That said, many of the companies that have previously exhibited at the show were in attendance at the 2013 event albeit incognito without the accompanying stand. And herein lies another possible explanation – the Italian and café business culture. Many of the incognito recent exhibitors, along with other buyers and sales people could be found networking in the mezzanine coffee areas between flooers, which further spread out exhibitors. This combined with a laid back Italian approach made be what this writer experienced on his maiden Autopromotec outing.

And this is not to say that there isn’t much of interest. On the contrary, as the organizing company says, “Autopromotec 2013 increasingly reflected the connotation of trade fairs within a trade fair”. And, based on the successful 2011 edition, this year’s AutopromotecEDU grew to 26 events that cover all areas of relevant interest for the aftermarket and supply chain world. There is no doubt that this part was particularly well attended, as our detailed coverage later in this section describes. Additional confirmation of the importance that this event is that AutopromotecEDU 2013 also occupied a large area of Hall 30, where two big rooms hosted the conferences for five straight days.

Looking forward, the Autopromotec 2013, were clearly conscious – it being the show’s 25th edition – of the event’s long term image. With this in mind it ran a Graphic Design Contest to create the new corporate image for Autopromotec 2015.

The contest, organised in collaboration with Youtool, a company that proposes graphic design as a competitive process. 10 projects by 10 different artists were selected by the Autopromotec staff at the end of the workshop stage of proceedings.

Overall Duccio Campagnoli, president of BolognaFiere, commented: “Autopromotec 2013 was a great success. In  the future, the partnership between BolognaFiere and Autopromotec will continue to provide a crucial  support to the ‘made in Italy’ and the Italian automotive market. In particular, BolognaFiere will continue to  act as an international platform and meeting hub for Asian, European and American market players, as  shown by the higher number of foreign operators attending Autopromotec 2013”.

The next edition of Autopromotec will take place at Bologna’s exhibition centre from May 20 to 24, 2015.

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