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drupa 2012 Stats Reveal Sharp Attendance Decline, Strong Order Activity

May 16, 2012
DUSSELDORF, GERMANY—May 16, 2012—The numbers are in and 314,500 attendees from more than 130 countries came to drupa 2012, which is 75,500 less (19 percent) than for the 2008 installment.

“This drop does not come as a surprise for us and the sector as a whole,” noted Werner Matthias Dornscheidt, president and CEO of Messe Düsseldorf. “In Germany alone, the printing industry lost some 3,900 operations with over 61,000 employees between 2000 and 2011. In the United States, over the same period, more than 7,700 printing operations closed.

“Against this backdrop, it is not surprising that fewer visitors came to drupa 2012. However, and this is the key point, customers now no longer come to drupa as large delegations or on group corporate trips; it is much more top managers who travel to Düsseldorf. drupa is clearly the decision-makers’ trade fair and the trade fair for business,” Dornscheidt added.

drupa 2012 is sending out key impulses for the worldwide print and media industry, the most important being that print has potential and the sector is investing heavily in its future. This trend was already visible at the event’s half-way point and exhibitors reported the conclusion of numerous deals all over the world.

This willingness to invest continued unabated in the second half of the trade fair. Add to this the fact that experts specifically highlight the wealth of innovations and market-oriented solutions for the entire print spectrum.

“drupa was a resounding success for the sector. The trade fair sent out key impulses. Numerous business ideas and innovations were showcased here that all led to high investment. What the 1,850 exhibitors presented here over the past two weeks will strengthen the development potential of the print and media industry long term,” says Bernhard Schreier, president of drupa 2012 and board chairman at Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG, summing up the drupa 2012 result. “Here in Düsseldorf, business was done and points were set for the future of the sector.”

Attendees come to drupa with specific investment intentions. Nearly 50 percent of all visitors place specific orders, most of which are signed at the trade fair itself. This comes as no surprise as, after all, the proportion of top managers amongst visitors has grown significantly since 2008 (50.8 percent in 2012 compared with 44.4 percent in 2008).

With more than 190,000 foreign visitors, the international focus of drupa continues at a very high level. What is striking here is the high number of trade visitors from India, which— now reaching some 15,000—ranks as the second largest visitor nation after Germany (123,000 visitors). Following behind these two in the country ranking are: Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Great Britain, the United States, Switzerland and Italy.


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