⦁    EMECA Members’ activity at record level
⦁    Sustainable transition, measuring and reporting main focus
⦁    Bella Center Copenhagen new member

The EMECA members met at Messe Stuttgart premises for their spring General Assembly 2024. “EMECA members represent leading trade fair venues and exhibition organisers in Europe. The performance of the industry has not only fully rebounded from the pandemic years, but is reaching new record levels, with sustainability aspects being an increasingly high priority”, states Roland Bleinroth, EMECA President. 

The members’ overview showed that 2024 will be a very good if not even a record year for the EMECA members’ venues and exhibition business. Now, both trade fairs focussing on national or European participants and the leading international exhibitions report high attendance levels. Unfortunately, long delays in visa applications to attend exhibitions in Europe from several countries remain a problem. Additionally, all members reported an impressive number of new shows equally in Europe and abroad, own and guest exhibitions. The focus countries or regions for the shows abroad are the USA, Latin America, China and India. 

Despite the positive development with regard to turn-over values, the situation continues more difficult on the profitability side. Major challenges remain, such as the geopolitical and economic uncertainty in this year of elections worldwide, costs increases including labour costs, talent attraction and staff retention.

All EMECA members prioritise and accelerate the transition towards net zero carbon emissions by investing into their infrastructure with a particular focus on sustainable energy performance of the buildings, as well as adapting to circular practices. The global industry initiative Net Zero Carbon Events, of which EMECA is a gold sponsor, offers great resources best practices and concrete projects to move fast. Lately, a large amount of legislation aiming at reducing and eliminating carbon emissions has been adopted by the European Union and at national level. The European Exhibition Industry Alliance (EEIA), EMECA and UFI’s joint monitoring and advocacy effort in Brussels, assists in monitoring and mastering this ambitious transition phase, particularly the multiple measuring and reporting obligations.  Sustainability, especially for travel and transport, was also one of the focus topics during the recent EU Dialogue event in Brussels, co-organised under the Belgian EU Presidency by visit.brussels, JMIC, EEIA and City DNA.

Guest speaker Dr. Rapp, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Economy, Employment and Tourism of the Baden Württemberg region, gave a welcome speech to the EMECA members, highlighting the impact of the exhibitions on the region and their contributions to innovation and competitiveness, and trade.
Bettina Fetzer, Vice President Communications & Marketing Mercedes‐Benz AG provided valuable insights on the latest brand marketing strategy, aiming not only at the classical formats like exhibitions but targeting more and more GenZ with influencer events and celebrities to coin the brand’s image. 

The EMECA General Assembly welcomed Bella Center Copenhagen, Denmark as a new member 2024. “We are delighted to welcome Bella Center to the EMECA family. It is fantastic to have a new member from Denmark, the first Nordic country represented in EMECA. Bella Center has successfully restarted only a few years ago and is the leader of the Danish market,” says Roland Bleinroth.

Photos enclosed:
1 - EMECA General Assembly


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Ms Barbara Weizsäcker, EMECA General Secretary
Tel. +32 25357250