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MUNICH – 97 per cent of companies want to continue participating in physical trade fairs according to two major surveys. Messe Frankfurt, a leading events organiser and the world’s largest textile trade fair business, polled 59,000 companies in autumn 2020 and spring 2021.

Companies responding expressed clear approval of the additional digital benefits offered by hybrid trade fair formats during the pandemic in particular. However, the overwhelming finding of the surveys was that people want in-person trade fairs.

Wolfgang Marzin, president and chief executive officer of Messe Frankfurt, shared his interpretation of the findings: “This is a clear vote of confidence for in-person events. Only 3 per cent of respondents wanted to see events move entirely online. In fact, 67 per cent of our customers would like events to take place solely in person, with another 30 percent expressing a preference for hybrid formats. In total, 97 per cent of our customers remain convinced that in-person events are an essential component of trade fairs.”

Marzin added: “We first conducted this survey back in 2020, and not only were our customers eager to share their views, but there was also a sharp rise in confidence been the first and second surveys. Many of our customers saw their financial situations improve markedly during this time. There has also been an increasing readiness to take part in trade fairs nationally and internationally, both today and in future. Both of these factors have made us very optimistic here at Messe Frankfurt. Our customers are still here.”

59,000 companies took part in the survey which included a mixture of quantitative and qualitative research. Mirko Schubert, vice president international sales management at Messe Frankfurt: “The fact that more than 70 per cent of customers surveyed provided us with qualified feedback is a sensational result that breaks all of our records.”


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