As NürnbergMesse CEO Peter Ottmann sees it, the season of New Year’s resolutions is exactly the right moment to announce “a bang-up year” at the company’s annual press conference. Starting late in 2024, at an investment of some EUR 200 million, the Franconian trade show organiser will be opening NCC Süd, “a further architectural and functional highlight of the Exhibition Center”. The Supervisory Board approved construction at its latest meeting. Which means that following the 2021 runs of the Spielwarenmesse and HOGA, the present Hall 3 will give way to excavators and a construction site. Ottmann’s fellow CEO Dr Roland Fleck notes that the company has good reason to take a “fundamentally optimistic” view of the coming fiscal year: exhibitors’ advance bookings are looking very good and the company continues to grow dynamically, both nationally and internationally. The sales target for 2020 is about EUR 350 million; 2019 was the most successful odd-numbered year in company history, closing out at more than EUR 280 million.
Although the final figures from abroad must still be consolidated, it’s already clear to both CEOs that 2019 was a very successful year. According to the preliminary analysis, exhibitor numbers at the international and national trade shows in Nuremberg were up 5 per cent last year, exhibitor booth space was up 4 per cent, and visitors were up 3 per cent – growth rates that were once again well above the “sideways drift of the German trade show market”, Ottmann said. All in all, he reported, exhibitor booth space at NürnbergMesse’s trade shows has grown 22 per cent over the past five years. The result is that the Exhibition Center that represents the company’s home base needs further expansion. The joint CEOs’ target: starting in 2024, Nuremberg is to offer the highest-performance exhibition venue in Europe in terms of both compact layout and ability to handle parallel operations.
Kick-off for the new NCC Süd
According to Dr Fleck, the new NCC Süd will be the fourth Convention Center at the site, and will form the heart of the future “The New Süd” complex, which will be flanked by the neighbouring Exhibition Halls 3A and 3C. “The New Süd” will provide around 32,000 m2 of gross exhibition space in all – helping to meet customers’ urgent need for closely interlinked trade fairs and conventions. As has already been the case for the successful Halls 3A and 3C, NCC Süd will also aim for certification from the German Sustainable Building Council, the DGNB – because sustainability has been a very high priority at NürnbergMesse for years. The interior of the building will be “bright, friendly and modern”, and the company intends NCC Süd to spark a “desire to visit trade shows and conventions in Nuremberg”, Fleck believes. The new NCC Süd is the striking capstone of a complex totalling some 400 metres in length – designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, as the two CEOs remark with a twinkle, resorting to their best German-infused English. For the period from 2014 (completion of Hall 3A) to 2024 (completion of NCC Süd), the total investment for “The New Süd” is expected to be some EUR 300 million.
Total investment for 2020-2027: EUR 500 million for real estate and infrastructure
Today’s announcement by NürnbergMesse’s joint CEOs about the new NCC Süd also represents the largest single investment in the NürnbergMesse Group’s forward-looking program for real estate, infrastructure and innovation, first announced back in 2017. Expenditures on real estate and infrastructure for the remaining 2020-2027 period alone are expected to come to EUR 500 million. “One thing we’re certain of: our forward-looking program will help keep Nuremberg a successful player in the Champions League of the world’s largest exhibition companies.”
“Fundamentally optimistic outlook” for 2020
NürnbergMesse is looking optimistically into its new fiscal year, Ottmann declares. That upbeat view is founded on such factors as exhibitors’ advance bookings, active interest in trending topics like organic foods, cybersecurity and preventive fire protection, and the expansion of the company’s product families of international trade shows. Additionally, he points out, NürnbergMesse offers extraordinary capabilities in digitalisation with its own portfolio: events like it-sa, embedded world and MedtecLIVE are outstanding examples of how digitalisation can be successfully implemented at international trade shows. “We thus foresee excellent chances that our successful track record will continue once again in 2020. All in all, NürnbergMesse is aiming for a new sales record of about EUR 350 million in 2020”, Fleck adds.
About NürnbergMesse Group
NürnbergMesse Group is one of the 15 largest trade fair companies in the world. It comprises NürnbergMesse GmbH and its 15 subsidiaries and affiliates. The company employs more than 1,000 people at eleven locations in Germany, Brazil, China, India, Italy, Greece, Austria and the USA. NürnbergMesse Group also has a network of international representatives operating in more than 100 countries. Its portfolio includes around 120 German and international trade fairs and congresses. Every year, up to 35,000 exhibitors (international contingent: 44%) and up to 1.5 million visitors (26% from outside Germany) take part in the Group’s own, partner and guest events.