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Messe Frankfurt plays host to 95,000 exhibitors and sets new sales record

7 Feb 2018

Messe Frankfurt has continued to build on its commercial successes in financial year 2017, reinforcing its market position among leading international trade fair companies. Thanks to its outstanding business activities worldwide, the company will set a new record this year with some 95,000 exhibitors. Messe Frankfurt sales will exceed the €660 million mark for the first time.

Messe Frankfurt is growing sustainably with constant investments in events and products, in digitisation and in optimising the design and capacity utilisation of its exhibition grounds. On presenting the Group’s preliminary key figures for 2017, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Wolfgang Marzin stressed: “We also make a point of investing counter-cyclically when we deem this to be the right strategic approach”.

With some 95,000 exhibitors and 4.3 million visitors – more than ever before – the Group is setting new records, which is also a testament to the resounding success of the 148 innovation platforms held around the world under the Messe Frankfurt umbrella. Company sales are growing to an estimated €661 million, in spite of a cyclically weak event year. This means that Messe Frankfurt has improved upon the two previous record years. With more than €271 million, the proportion of sales generated outside Germany is now at 41 percent. As a result, consolidated annual net income for the Group will once again be extremely healthy at around €40 million.

Detlef Braun, Member of the Executive Board of Messe Frankfurt, summarises the operating business as follows: “We are active in regions that are of central relevance for our customers and are also expanding our portfolio in challenging markets”. The company is pushing ahead with its activities in Russia in spite of difficult conditions there. As one of the main organisers in Russia, Messe Frankfurt’s events are among the country’s leading trade fairs. Messe Frankfurt is also behind one of the leading trade fair companies in South America. Our Argentine subsidiary is also making a name for itself by organising and running major international congresses, such as the WTO Congress with 5,000 participants. Messe Frankfurt has just been awarded the contract to serve as event partner for the 2018 G20 Summit in Argentina, which is to be attended by the heads of state and government, finance ministers and central bank governors from the world’s twenty largest economies.

With its event formats, Messe Frankfurt is well positioned to accommodate the ongoing trend towards digitisation within the sectors. Accordingly, the interactive concept Hypermotion that was launched in November has proved to be a resounding success as a knowledge-based platform for digital transformation across all modes of transport. With Formnext as the gravitational centre of the international additive manufacturing and modern production technology sector, Messe Frankfurt’s portfolio boasts an international platform that is growing together with its dynamic market and which, with its third event, has clearly defined itself as a leading trade fair. Since this year, RosMould in Moscow has been part of the brand family portfolio, joining the well established Asiamold.

Primed for the future with sustainable investments
Uwe Behm, Member of the Messe Frankfurt Executive Board, stresses the relevance of digitisation within the Group: “Messe Frankfurt invests continually in its exhibition grounds and infrastructure as well as to a great extent in expanding its IT systems and digital offerings around the world”. Digital traffic management has also been further optimised. As well as this, the enormous momentum of technical advancement will give rise to a whole host of new possibilities. By investing in its Frankfurt base, Messe Frankfurt is also boosting its attractiveness as a partner for guest events. With more than 230 guest events, capacity utilisation at the exhibition grounds was once again very healthy indeed. The congress business at our Frankfurt base is reporting impressive growth. In spite of – and perhaps also due to – the relentless digital networking, it is clearly evident at both trade fairs and congresses that the demand for real interaction among participants is as strong as ever.

As a global player with local responsibility, Messe Frankfurt has strong roots in the region. “Frankfurt has always been the centre of our Group and will remain so”, says Wolfgang Marzin, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), underpinning the strategic plans for the company’s Frankfurt base.
Messe Frankfurt is looking ahead to the forthcoming financial year with confidence and optimism. Heimtextil, the first event scheduled to take place in January, is booked out.

A video of this press conference and photographic material are available in our online newsroom at