German organisers call off New York IT trade fair

3rd August 2004, Comments 0 comments

3 August 2004 , HANOVER - The German organisers of a major US computer fair said Tuesday they were calling next year's show off, just six weeks after the rival fair, Comdex in Las Vegas, was also cancelled. The collapse of Comdex, scheduled for November 2004, and of CeBIT America, scheduled for June 2005 in New York City, indicates a reluctance of the computer industry to invest in trade fairs. The decision means the main CeBIT, held every March in the German city of Hanover, will be the world's main showp

3 August 2004

HANOVER - The German organisers of a major US computer fair said Tuesday they were calling next year's show off, just six weeks after the rival fair, Comdex in Las Vegas, was also cancelled.

The collapse of Comdex, scheduled for November 2004, and of CeBIT America, scheduled for June 2005 in New York City, indicates a reluctance of the computer industry to invest in trade fairs.

The decision means the main CeBIT, held every March in the German city of Hanover, will be the world's main showplace for the latest innovations in digital technology. CeBIT attracts many Asian vendors and brings together industry buyers from around the globe.

Both CeBIT fairs are organized by the German company Deutsche Messe of Hanover, which announced CeBIT America 2005 was being "postponed".

MediaLive International on 23 June had announced Comdex Las Vegas 2004 was being postponed.

The move appeared to reflect a lack of bookings for stand space. The first two CeBIT America shows, in 2003 and this year, attracted fewer visitors than hoped, according to two Hanover newspapers, the Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung and the Neue Presse.

Joachim Schaefer, chief executive of Hannover Fairs USA, said: "Our responsibility towards both exhibitors and visitors forces this decision on us. It reflects the market situation in the United States."

He said his company would instead be organising conferences in different US cities "according to demand".

Computer fairs in the United States have been smaller-scale affairs than in Germany.

Comdex was tiny compared to CeBIT, but attracted equal or more media coverage because it was usually attended by the brightest figures from Silicon Valley and the heads of Microsoft and other leading companies.

Fairs in Germany are big business, with the major ones blocking all available hotel space while they are under way.

The interest of the German public in fairs even leads exhibitors at the Hanover Fair, the Frankfurt Book Fair or the Nuremberg Toy Fair to complain that it is hard to spot the valuable trade buyers when so many of the simply curious are milling around stands.

But Deutsche Messe continues to operate at a loss. Last year it wrote a EUR 4.4 million loss and it has admitted that that figure is likely to exceed EUR 10 million this year.

DPA

Subject: German news



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