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Press Release

December 12, 2018

After a very successful year Messe Berlin gears up for the future in a competitive market

- Best performance: Group turnover forecast at 347 million euros
- New events strengthen Berlin as a platform for discussing digitalisation
- Massive investment secures the future of Berlin as a venue for trade fairs and congresses

For Messe Berlin, events in 2018 are on course to achieve the group’s best performance to date and double-digit growth in turnover. Messe Berlin currently expects group turnover to reach 347 million euros in 2018, which is 12 per higher compared with 2016 (308 mio. euros) and the highest figure to date in the company’s history.

According to the latest calculations, between January and December over 120 in-house and guest events attracted more than 2.5 million visitors. Around 40,000 companies and institutions from over 180 countries were represented at the various events. Messe Berlin’s work generates business in the local region. Based on calculations by Investitionsbank Berlin, this past year spending by out-of-town visitors and exhibitors boosted the Berlin economy by 1.7 billion euros. 

”Conference and trade fair business in Berlin continues to grow and is contributing to the Berlin economy in growing measure“, said Dr. Christian Göke, CEO of Messe Berlin. ”Ahead of us lies a decade of investment in order to maintain our success in an increasingly competitive market. The focus is on expansion of our portfolio, the continuing digitalisation of our business, and modernisation of the infrastructure on our exhibition grounds. Our success in 2018 will provide an impetus for the tasks ahead.”


New events on the topic of digitalisation 

In 2018 Messe Berlin further increased its standing as an organiser of events on the subject of digitalisation. According to Dr. Göke, ”trade fairs and congresses on IT and digitalisation are alive and well. IFA has been the world’s trade show on digitalisation in the consumer electronics and home appliances sector for many years, and DMEA has established itself successfully as Europe’s leading trade fair on digitalisation in the medical sector. In 2018 we continued along this path by launching new events.” 

In November the debut took place of the Smart Country Convention, a trade fair and congress on digitalisation of local government and public services. Under the patronage of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, co-organised with the industry association Bitkom, and with Denmark as its partner country, the first edition of this event set standards and played host to 500 speakers and numerous partners representing local government, politics and science. 

Also in November, the second edition of droidcon ‘made by Messe Berlin’ took place in San Francisco. In June, Messe Berlin had previously organised droidcon at the City Cube Berlin. The event is the world’s leading independent series of conferences for Android developers.


Investing in infrastructure 

In August the first stage of the Messe Berlin master plan came to fruition with the topping-out ceremony of hub27 Berlin, a multi-purpose hall for trade fairs and congresses with an attendance capacity of 11,500. The total cost of hub27 Berlin is 75 million euros. What is currently Messe Berlin’s biggest construction project is within its budget and time limit and is due to be completed in April 2019. Beginning in 2019, Messe Berlin will modernise existing halls and buildings over the next 15 years.

Leading trade fairs firmly established on the global market 

In 2018 the leading international trade fairs IFA, ITB Berlin, FRUIT LOGISTICA and the International Green Week Berlin continued to build on their standing as global leaders in their respective sectors. For those involved in these industries, events in Berlin are simply not to be missed. 

Supporting events abroad also secured and increased the standing of our leading trade fairs. They included CHINA FRUIT LOGISTICA, which took place in May in Shanghai. With the launch of this event Messe Berlin has continued to evolve into an even more international brand, a development which began over ten years ago. 


Berlin attracts more congresses than ever 

In 2018 business in guest events and congresses maintained its previous high levels. A total of 64 guest events covering a cumulative display area of more than 1,000,000 square metres took place and attracted more than 475,000 visitors. The CityCube Berlin, the main event venue, operated at full capacity. Trade fair highlights included the printing industry event FESPA as well as the Critical Communications World. In 2018, large-scale national and international congresses were held at Messe Berlin again. Among this year’s events was the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD), which attracted over 15,000 participants. There were positive developments in the corporate event sector too. In 2018, for the first time, the annual general meeting of the VW AG took place in Berlin. ”Overall, we can say that year by year Berlin is becoming more and more attractive for congresses“, said Dr. Göke.


About Messe Berlin

Based on turnover and growth, Messe Berlin is one of the world's ten leading trade fair companies. Each year it develops, markets and hosts hundreds of live events in Berlin and around the world. Its wide-ranging portfolio includes IFA, InnoTrans, ITB, FRUIT LOGISTICA and the International Green Week, all leading global trade fairs, as well as major conferences and iconic events such as the street celebrations (Fanmeile) at the Brandenburg Gate. Messe Berlin has around 90 foreign representatives who market events in over 170 countries. Each year some 30,000 members of the media from all parts of the world obtain accreditation for events on the exhibition grounds in Berlin where the company has its headquarters. Thus, Messe Berlin acts as a driving force of the metropolis that is Berlin. Its aim is to be an outstanding host for visitors to every event at Messe Berlin, to give individuals an optimum boost for their business and to ensure fair conditions for everyone. This approach is reflected in the company slogan: ‘Messe Berlin – Hosting the World’.