Just a few more weeks and the time will have come around again. 3,100 companies from the plastics and rubber industry in 60 different countries are currently preparing for the most important event in their sector: the plastics trade fair (K 2013) in Düsseldorf, that takes place every three years and will be open to the trade public from 16. to 23. October 2013. The trade fair company, industry representatives and exhibitors recently took a look ahead to the big event in October at the K Preview.
Ulrich Reifenhäuser, Chairman of the Exhibitors’ Council of the plastics trade fair K 2013
Ulrich Reifenhäuser, Chairman of the Exhibitors’ Council of the plastics trade fair K 2013, points out that while some economic regions around the world – Japan, for example – are registering substantial growth, while there are signs of a slight improvement in the economic situation in the USA and while China has confirmed its growth forecast of seven per cent for 2013 in spite of a slowdown, the economy is continuing to develop poorly in Europe as a whole. He adds that the situation is inconsistent and difficult for the plastics and rubber industry to assess at the moment. The industry is nevertheless confident about the future: “We are working on the assumption of a stable year with small decreases or increases”. The company CEO is convinced that business will be stimulated significantly by K, the most important trade fair in the world for the plastics and rubber industry.
Werner Matthias Dornscheidt, Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf
DThe basic mood is therefore cautiously positive, but with a definite trend all the same. Werner M. Dornscheidt, Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf, summarises his impressions as follows: “The plastics and rubber industry in this K year is dynamic, innovative and confident”. The host of the plastics trade fair is satisfied – and rightly so, as the figures demonstrate; after all, every single square metre of space in the exhibition halls has been booked:
The international plastics and rubber community is meeting in Düsseldorf in the autumn with net exhibition space of about 25 football fields (170,000 square metres). The Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf is excited: “Nowhere else in the world can such a wide range of raw material, processing and application engineering technology be experienced as at K”.
Machine manufacturers have booked most of the space
Suppliers of machines and equipment (Halls 1-4, 9-17) have reserved about two thirds of the exhibition space (119,000 square metres, 5,000 more than at K 2010) and therefore represent the largest group of exhibitors – a tradition at K, as Ulrich Reifenhäuser adds, who is himself an exhibitor of such products as extruders. A comprehensive selection of all the latest manufacturing and processing technologies in the world is being presented. The main emphases are on benefits for the customer as well as energy, resource and material efficiency. The organisers and industry representatives are convinced that the live presentations – including complex production units that are assembled and put into operation in the Messe Düsseldorf halls – are unique anywhere in the world.
The manufacturers of raw materials, semi-finished products and technical parts will be presenting optimised standard plastics, bioplastics, special plastics and reinforced plastics as well as newly developed structural materials and functional polymers in Halls 5-8a; the focus of the second-largest group of exhibitors, who have booked about 38,000 square metres this year (an increase of 3,500 square metres over K 2010) – about a fifth of the space that is available – is on energy-efficient and environmentally sound product solutions. The rubber industry is in turn giving an insight into current developments in the area of “rubber and thermoplastic elas-tomers” at the rubber industry display in Hall 6.
In this context: Messe Düsseldorf has for the first time produced a “Rubber & TPE Pocket Guide” for everyone interested in elastomer technology. This guide gives trade visitors a specific overview of the exhibitors.
The plastics and rubber community in Düsseldorf
According to Werner M. Dornscheidt, about 3,100 exhibitors from 60 different countries have registered for the trade fair. Most of them come from Europe, led by Germany with 1,018 exhibitors and about 66,000 square metres of exhibition space. Italy (400 exhibitors / 26,726 m²) follows in second place, with China (342 exhibitors / 9,606 m²) in third place. The 76 exhibitors from Austria – ten fewer than in 2010 – have booked somewhat more space (8,120 m²) than three years ago (8,070 m²). A look at the figures that are available reveals plenty of other inter-esting information, although the focus should not always be on the figures alone.
Impressions from the K 2010
A total of 100 exhibitors from Switzerland are presenting their product portfolio on about 6,400 m² at K 2013, whereas there were only 86 and 6,100 m² at K 2010. 143 exhibitors are coming from India this year (K 2010: 122) and they have reserved 5,324 m², about 100 more than three years ago. The Netherlands have increased their contingent this year from 44 exhibitors at K 2010 to 57 and from 4,200 m² of exhibition space to 4,700 m². The number of US exhibitors has remained almost exactly the same at 110, but they have booked about 1,000 m² more space (5,360 m²). There are 96 exhibitors from Turkey (who have reserved about 4,000 m²) this year compared with 70 (2,800 m²) at K 2010. Saudi Arabia has doubled the number of its exhibitors from three to six, while the exhibition area they have booked has at the same time increased five times over, from 100 to 500 m². There has been a similar development with the two exhibitors from New Zealand, who are probably the ones who will have to travel furthest to get to the fair. And what should be mentioned last but not least: exhibitors from Latvia, Lichtenstein, Nigeria, Tunisia, Ukraine, Belarus and Cyprus are taking part in K for the first time (compared with K 2010, at least).
K 2013: a reflection of the global economy
The Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf thinks that the K 2013 statistics reflect the changes in the world market: “While the net exhibition space booked by the five largest Asian countries at the trade fair (China, Taiwan, India, Japan and South Korea) amounted to 18,800 square metres in 2010, it is a good third larger this year at 25,000 square metres”. Another striking development is, in his opinion, the fact that such countries as Greece, Spain and Italy – which have been hit hard by the financial crisis – will have the same or even a larger presence than three years ago. The same is true of the USA. Although the number of exhibitors from this country has only increased to an insignificant extent, the exhibition space they have booked has grown from 4,300 square metres in 2010 to 5,300 square metres (2013).
Special features at K 2013
Dornscheidt draws particular attention to two premieres at K 2013: “University and research institutes are presenting subjects of particular future significance at K 2013 in the context of the Science Campus in Hall 7.” One of the aims of this initiative is to intensify the dialogue between science and industry. The special show “Plastics move the world!” is in turn designed to provide an important insight into and overview of the global functions of and applications for plastics in industry, science, medicine and society. What else is there to report and announce? Here is a brief summary:
• Exhibits relevant to the most important area of innovation of printed electronics will be on display at many booths. Both printing technology and plastics for functionalised surfaces such as RFID solutions, flexible displays and OLEDs will be presented to specialist visitors from the processing and consumer industries. A special brochure will help visitors to find all exhibitors that are active in the printed electronics segment.
• A new Innovation Compass, which shows a direct way to the highlights of all exhibitors, will help visitors navigate the abundance of new developments. It is comprised of a search matrix for innovations that introduce important improvements or even groundbreaking changes. The Innovation Compass, available about six weeks prior to the trade fair on www.k-online.de, will allow visitors to prepare their personalised visit to the exhibition area in Düsseldorf.
• Although K 2013 in Düsseldorf has not started yet, on www.k-online.de it is already well under way. In the run-up to the trade show, all visitors can access general information on K 2013 and exhibiting companies, find out which countries are represented and read all about the innovations on show in October. The preliminary list of exhibitors – updated daily – is only one feature of this diversified online service.
• News from the industry, new developments in different plastics-related research areas and links to specialist media and science institutes provide users with a leading information edge. If required, K news can be sent to users as an electronic newsletter. With its personalised services including the personal notebook MyOrganizer, MyCalendar for online appointments and MyCatalogue for compiling a personal exhibition catalogue, the K portal offers many useful features for preparing your visit to the K trade show.
• The exhibitors of K 2013 now also present their product range and company information in a central exhibitor database. This feature is an ideal tool for visitors strategically searching for companies, product groups or product information. If that is not enough, visitors can resort to the K Matchmaking feature. This online tool is designed for those with specific questions for exhibitors or searching for products that meet special requirements.
• The internet platform now offers a new ticket service, allowing users to buy their K 2013 ticket online. With www.k-online.de, the trade show ticket is only one click away and the eTicket is less expensive. Purchased online, a day ticket will cost EUR 49 the official price for tickets purchased at the counter in Düsseldorf is EUR 65. The online three-day-ticket will cost EUR 108 instead of EUR 135 for tickets acquired at the counter. Another benefit of the online ticket is the fact that it doubles as a free ticket for local public transport in the Düsseldorf area.
• The new K-App provides users with all important information on mobile devices.
About 200,000 specialists from all over the world are expected to visit K 2013 in Düsseldorf. The trade show starts on Wednesday, 16 October and ends on Wednesday, 23 October, and will be open daily from 10 a.m. until 6.30 p.m. If you want, just come by and see for yourself what K 2013 has to offer. And if you are interested, you already have the opportunity now and in due course to obtain all the information you need about K 2013 via the Internet www.k-online.de
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