The uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic, extensive restrictions and hygiene regulations for holding trade fairs in Baden-Württemberg, and limitations on international travel have led to a situation where SurfaceTechnology GERMANY and parts2clean, which were scheduled for 27‒29 October, will not be held this year. The decision was made by the organizer in close coordination with the trade fair advisory boards.
"We fought hard for both trade fairs, but in the end there's no alternative to cancellation," says Olaf Daebler, Global Director SurfaceTechnology GERMANY and parts2clean in the team of Deutsche Messe AG. "Under the given circumstances, it would not have been possible to successfully stage the two trade fairs in Stuttgart in October. Companies need reliable planning, which called for a prompt decision. We will now invest all of our energy in restarting parts2clean in October 2021 and SurfaceTechnology GERMANY in June 2022. Once the current situation has been overcome, both events will be needed more than ever."
In numerous conversations with companies and associations, an increasingly distinct picture has emerged in recent weeks: Due to the economic crisis in which some companies are struggling to survive, there are currently other topics on the agenda than attending a trade fair. However, the question of health and protection against infection is still very important. Whether for business or private reasons ‒ much of the population is minimizing travel and contact. Especially international travel is more difficult. Furthermore, hygiene concepts and political guidelines for holding trade fairs would have significantly affected the usual appearance of the events. For trade fairs in Baden-Württemberg, for example, plans permit one person per 10 square meters in each exhibition hall.
A visitor survey last week finally tipped the scales for the cancellations. According to this survey, around 60 percent of the previous visitors of SurfaceTechnology GERMANY have either excluded or at least questioned a visit under the current circumstances. For parts2clean, this figure is even higher at 65 percent. The reason for this is very clearly the corona pandemic. The effects of the pandemic on staging trade fairs, fear of a possible infection, and limited travel opportunities are the main reasons for visitor skepticism.
SurfaceTechnology GERMANY, the international trade fair for surface technology, was originally scheduled for June 2020 and had therefore already been postponed to this autumn. The surface technology industry will now meet again at SurfaceTechnology GERMANY from 21 to 23 June 2022 in Stuttgart. Next year, the SurfaceTechnology AREA will also be part of HANNOVER MESSE in April 2021.
The leading international trade fair for parts and surface cleaning, parts2clean is an annual trade fair. Its next date is 5 to 7 October 2021.
For exhibitors of both trade fairs and visitors who had already purchased a ticket, the cancellation will result in questions and a need for further information. For all participants the most important details will soon be available on the trade fair websites. For everything else, the team will be ready to help.
Statements on the cancellation of SurfaceTechnology GERMANY and parts2clean:
Christoph Matheis, Chief Executive Officer, Central Association for Surface Technology (ZVO):
"Deutsche Messe AG's decision to cancel Surface Technology GERMANY 2020 is the right one considering the present fragile corona situation with numerous requirements regarding hygiene, distance regulations and the bad economic conditions at the moment. Ultimately, the top priority for all of us is to take responsibility for the health and safety of exhibitors, visitors and employees. The need for personal interaction will return and will probably be greater than ever before. That is why we are pinning our hopes on a slowdown of the pandemic and an economic upturn in the second half of 2021 latest, so that we will then be able to organize a successful Surface Technology GERMANY 2022 with strength and optimism. The German Surface Technology Association and its numerous exhibitors will participate."
Dr. Thomas Schräder, Managing Director, Air-Handling Technology Association within the German Mechanical Engineering Industry Association (VDMA):
"The cancellation of Surface Technology Germany 2020 is a pity, but in view of the current situation it is the right and responsible decision by Deutsche Messe AG to avert economic risks for all parties involved. The decision is thus a logical consequence of the postponement of almost all trade shows of relevance to the mechanical engineering industry in autumn 2020. For companies, the key issue in the coming months is to be able to survive the period until a sustained economic recovery. SurfaceTechnology GERMANY 2022 is expected to be held at a time of economic upswing and then return to its usual strong position as the marketplace for surface technology."
Arndt Striso, Technical Sales, Dr.-Ing. Max Schlötter GmbH & Co. KG:
"Since its introduction in 2006, Surface Technology GERMANY has been a regular event in the exhibition calendar of Dr.-Ing. Max Schlötter GmbH & Co. KG. After the original date of the fair had been postponed, we also believed in the fact that Surface Technology GERMANY 2020 would be held in October. We did not expect that Deutsche Messe AG would have to cancel this year's fair, which is so important for the surface coating industry. However, we fully support the decision, as we believe that the trade fair could have taken place only under very limited conditions regarding hygiene and distance regulations. We also think that many companies and customers are currently occupied with existential problems and therefore do not find the time to attend trade fairs. The expected lower number of visitors would not really have justified the financial and material expenditure of this fair. This is another reason why we support the decision and are looking forward to a SurfaceTechnology GERMANY 2022 in Stuttgart in two years, which can then certainly be held under better conditions than this year."
Ulrike Kunz, Head of the Technical Centre, SurTec Deutschland GmbH:
"SurTec has been participating in the parts2clean trade fair from the very beginning. The trade fair was and is a very important event for us and our industry, due to the unique character of its offerings. I am not aware of any other trade fair that covers the field of industrial parts cleaning in such a complete way. I therefore find it extremely unfortunate that the event cannot take place this year due to the exceptional circumstances caused by Covid 19. However, the decision is quite understandable, because a trade fair thrives on direct dialogue, on people meeting in person, and this would not have been possible to a sufficient extent this year. We are now facing the future, and are already looking forward to next year's parts2clean. You can manage a lot via Internet and digitally, but a trade fair ‒ and this trade fair in particular ‒ will never be replace by this."
Professor Dr. Lothar Schulze, Chairman of the Industrial Parts Cleaning Association (FiT):
"It is a pity that parts2clean has to be cancelled this year. The FiT, with its service offerings covering advanced training, qualification and consulting, is very well prepared for trade fair enquiries from cleaning system operators. However, since the given general conditions do not allow convenient discussions on problem solving, the decision made is reasonable and acceptable. Therefore, we look forward to next year's parts2clean with great confidence. With our initiative ‘QSREIN 4.0: Opportunities for Cleaning Technology' we will demonstrate the current innovative and customized process solutions for component cleaning in the future."
Florian Weber, Vice President Sales, Weber Ultrasonics AG:
"The effects of the corona pandemic are occupying us all more strongly and longer than expected. Unfortunately, it is not possible to offer visitors an exciting and successful trade fair experience as usual under the current official regulations. For exhibitors, planning and preparation under such uncertain conditions is almost impossible. We are very much aware of our responsibility towards our co-exhibitors, visitors and staff members, and will therefore concentrate on parts2clean 2021. We want to use time until then to develop a resilient trade fair concept and exciting new formats."