Hannover Messe 2020, one of Europe’s leading trade fairs for industrial technology which was originally scheduled to run from April 20–24, but was postponed to July 13–17 due to coronavirus (COVID-19), has now been cancelled. This is the first time in Hannover Messe’s seventy-three-year history that the event will not take place.
The trade fair is expected to return on April 12–16, 2021. Event organiser Deutsche Messe AG said in an official statement, “Comprehensive travel restrictions, bans on group gatherings and a prohibition decree in the Hannover region make it impossible to stage Hannover Messe.”
“At the same time, the corona crisis is affecting the economy, and the manufacturing industry – Hannover Messe’s core clientele – is already struggling with serious consequences of the pandemic,” the statement continued. “Demand and sales in German industry are declining, resulting in supply bottlenecks, production stops and reduced working hours for employees.”
Dr Jochen Köckler, Chairman of the Board of Management at Deutsche Messe, stated, “Given the dynamic development around COVID-19 and the extensive restrictions on public and economic life, Hannover Messe cannot take place this year. Our exhibitors, partners and our entire team did everything they could to make it happen, but today we have to accept that in 2020 it will not be possible to host the world’s most important industrial event.”
Köckler explained that despite the event’s cancellation, various web-based services will enable Hannover Messe exhibitors and visitors to exchange information about upcoming economic policy challenges and technological solutions. Livestreams will allow interactive expert interviews, panel discussions and best-case presentations to be viewed globally, and the online exhibitor and product search are also reportedly being enhanced, with the addition of features such as a function that enables visitors and exhibitors to contact each other directly.
“The need for orientation and exchange is particularly important in times of crisis. That is why we are currently working intensely on a digital information and networking platform for Hannover Messe that we will open to our customers shortly,” he added.
“We firmly believe that nothing can replace direct, person-to-person contact and we are already looking forward to the time after corona. But especially in times of crisis, we must be flexible and act pragmatically. As organisers of the world’s most important industrial trade fair, we want to offer orientation and sustain economic life during the crisis. We are doing that with our new digital offering.”