The fair concept “Motion instead of standstill” of the two demonstration fairs ‘recycling aktiv’ and TiefbauLive, which were systematically coupled and took place from 5 to 7 September 2013, proved to be a great success (Fig. 1). Despite difficult general data and the year of the bauma, the number of exhibitors and visitors at this lively event on the exhibition area near the Baden-Airpark again increased considerably, whereby the two fairs were organized jointly for the second time (Fig. 2).
At the end of both fairs with 10 130 visitors, the expectations of Dr. Friedhelm Rese, the active partner of Geoplan GmbH and responsible for the overall organization of both fairs, were completely fulfilled. As a result, compared to the previous event, this double fair achieved an increase of 10 %. “It turned out that our concept was right, i.e. to shift the event to the period from Thursday to Saturday – previously the fair took place from Wednesday to Friday - because the majority of owners and decision-makers at minor companies only have time to visit a fair on Saturdays. This was the result of a visitor survey at the previous event and we reacted accordingly.”
According to Dr. Rese there was hardly any difference between the proportion of specialist visitors on Saturday and the other days of the week. However, only a final exhibitor survey will provide an exact result. According to an estimation of the organizers it is already obvious that the special fairs had a share of expert visitors of clearly more than 90 %. Udo Kiesewalter, the Managing Director of VDBUM Service GmbH, the organizer of TiefbauLive, agreed with the positive result. “Despite a full calendar of fairs and, in particular, the bauma in spring, we again achieved success with this young fair. This proves that our concept with the focus on actions in step with actual practice is exactly right. Here, we are designing the fair model of the future (Fig. 3). Even if some of the exhibitors would have liked to have a few more visitors, all of them confirmed unanimously that the quality of the specialist visitors was absolutely top. The participation of trainees from the training centres of our German construction head associations also proved to be an excellent idea with their work at the show site of road and canal construction. It is almost impossible to promote the attractiveness of building professions in a better way.”
Finally, something new certainly surprised the fair organizers and the exhibitors as well. After mixed feelings due to the unexpectedly restrained visitor frequency on Friday, the event did not come to an end after the obligatory horn honking of the building machinery and equipment at 15.30 on Saturday, which usually indicates the end of the fair. The people simply continued to test and demonstrate, in particular at the major demonstration stands, where the visitors themselves were allowed to test various machines under instruction by the staff (Fig. 4). Even the most experienced exhibitors had seldom seen this before. However, they were really taken with this rare case.
Altogether 230 exhibitors representing 281 brands prove how well this concept is accepted by the manufacturers, dealers and service providers. About 70 % of the exhibition site were demonstration areas (Fig. 5). While, as expected, the “Mobile scrap and metal yard” of the ‘recycling aktiv’ was the real magnet for the visitors, the “Show site of road construction and civil engineering” was the real draw of the TiefbauLive. Furthermore, both fairs were given a fresh impetus by the expert-ideal partnerships with the corresponding associations of the participating industries.
In 2015 the next double fair, consisting of ‘recycling aktiv’ and TiefbauLive, will take place themed “Two fairs – one location – one date”.