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Shining brighter than ever

With 78,000 visitors from more than 120 countries the GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST 2015 shows in Düsseldorf in June were on a similar level in terms of attendance to that of previous events, however it was the atmosphere that was notably different. There was a particular feeling of high spirits and positivity with some impressive exhibition stands and a real buzz around the halls.
The organisers report that the 2,214 exhibiting companies undertook numerous business transactions with customers from around the world. Of particular note was the great demand in the Asian region for European metallurgy and foundry technology specifically with respect to the current requirements of the industry in that region regarding the saving of energy and resources. Two thirds of the visitors were directly involved in investment decisions in the top and middle management of their companies. On top of the international visitor ranking were experts from India, Italy, Turkey, France and China. Indeed the international attendance now accounts for 56 per cent of visitors and 51 per cent of exhibitors.

A positive vibe
Messe Düsseldorf managing director Joachim Schäfer said: “The Bright World of Metals shines brighter than ever. The atmosphere in the fair halls was excellent every day. The trade visitors really appreciated that complete machines and systems are presented here in Düsseldorf. Accordingly, the sales talks run extremely positive.” Global market leaders and participating companies specialising in niche technologies evaluated their fair participation as ‘very satisfactory’. Trade visitors evaluated top marks for GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST - up to 98 per cent regarded their trade fair visit as ‘good.’ 

Visitor profile
Spokesmen from exhibiting companies reported that they met their target groups at the fairs. At GIFA these were experts in iron, steel and non-ferrous metal castings as well as in engineering. At METEC the major visitor group traditionally came from iron and steel production together with plant engineering and construction, apparatus engineering and tool making. This is also valid for THERMPROCESS. Experts in automotive and gear manufacturing as well as inthe ancillary industry came to NEWCAST but also visitors from engineering, apparatus engineering and tool making played a decisive role. 
The ecoMetals campaign was held for the second time in 2015 and judging by its success the topic of energy efficiency and resource saving was obviously in the focus of visitors’ interest. Director Friedrich-Georg Kehrer said: “For the customer’s industries the recent technologies for the saving of resources and energy efficiency play a considerable role in placing investments. Companies distinguishing themselves in these aspects were in great demand as a visitor’s target on the four fairs.” Consequently, the ecoMetals trails were well booked leading interested trade visitors to those exhibitors participating in the campaign. Companies presented their innovative technologies and could get in direct contact with potential customers from around the world. 

Exhibitor assessment
Exhibitor assessment was also very positive. Dieter Rosenthal, member of the management board of the SMS group said: “We are pleased to see that GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST managed to reach their visitor target again and were able to increase their significance in the metal industry successfully. The combination of four different trade fairs is an excellent platform particularly for companies like the SMS Group, as we met customers from all over the world and from many different sectors at the same place and time. This personal dialogue between experts is of elementary importance to us as plant manufacturers.”
Dr Ioannis Ioannidis, CEO and president of Frech, points out that GIFA 2015 took place in a period of optimistic economic conditions: “We had an extremely high number of international customers with concrete plans to invest. Additionally several business deals have been confirmed. The demand for innovative products as well as the atmosphere was promising. We are looking forward to the next GIFA show in Düsseldorf in four year’s time.” 
Erich Brunner, director of DISA and Wheelabrator had a very successful GIFA in 2015: “There were large crowds of existing and potential customers from all over the world. The innovative solutions we exhibited, such as complete blasting machine programs to satisfy all the standard and special requirements of both large and small foundries as well as a global and locally based service network, attracted a particularly large amount of attention.” 
Thomas Angerbauer, market segment manager foundry from KUKA Robots GmbH, reports: “The number of visitors and the interest shown in the products and solutions from KUKA Roboter and KUKA Industries at GIFA 2015 definitely exceeded our expectations.” His colleague Steffen Günther, vice president casting solutions, KUKA Industries GmbH, adds: “Countless meetings with our customers on the stand have helped us to understand their requirements even better and to identify the market trends. Automation of diecasting was the main focus.”
MAGMA managing director Dr Marc C Schneider says that GIFA 2015 was a very successful event for his company: “The atmosphere was unusually positive and the visitors to our stand showed very keen interest in the technical trends in the industry and in the optimisation of their processes. Both we and our MAGMA colleagues from all over the world were delighted by the international visitors and plenty of new contacts.” Dr Jörg C Sturm from the MAGMA management confirms: “GIFA is the leading trade fair for an entire industry…numerous innovations were presented for the first time at the trade fair, which makes GIFA an indispensable event, quite apart from the personal contacts to customers that are possible there.” 
Till Schreiter, director of ABP Induction, found participation in GIFA/THERMPROCESS very worthwhile again: “As expected, the trade fair was a tremendous success again. It pays off here that the event only takes place every four years, so that customers are very interested and focus intensively on the exhibits, in contrast to rival trade fairs which are not as attractive.” 

World foundry industry comes together
During the event the World Foundry Organization (WFO) held its executive board meeting, general membership meeting and some specific-topic commission meetings along with the open invitation WFO Technical Forum. The latter event was organised in a drop-in session format and was so successful that on occasions there was standing room only.
GIFA provided the ideal meeting place for global organisations such as the WFO along with European associations and national bodies who were able to come together under one roof.

FOUNDRY TRADE JOURNAL – representing your needs
It is our job to report the news, not feature in it, but we at Foundry Trade Journal would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who visited our stand in Hall 15. We can only echo what has already been claimed by many exhibitors, which is that, in our experience, this was the most successful GIFA for some years. We thank all our subscribers, advertisers and contributors for making the show particularly memorable.