Around the world in fifty days and three trade shows

15 May 2018

Regular readers of my monthly comment will have noticed a theme emerging in recent issues—specifically, the various trade shows that I’ve been attending.

I will admit that I have partly been mentioning my planned travels as a memo to myself, so that I end up going to the correct country each time.

Folllowing Logimat in Stuttgart, Germany in March, I attended Modex in Atlanta, USA at the start of April and at the time of writing, am still digesting a small cheese sandwich given to me courtesy of Eurowings on my flight back from CeMat in Hannover, Germany.

It’s been a very busy but very engaging few weeks. America is always an interesting place to visit, particularly as a Brit—seeing the subtle cultural differences in the States is a reliable source of education and slight awkwardness. Constant uncertainty regarding when and when not to tip, and if so how much; the mildly startling experience of a stranger wishing you a good morning while sharing a short ride in a lift, or ‘elevator’; and seeing the unpromising-sounding ‘grits’ on breakfast menus.

As it turned out, ‘grits’ are very tasty and the US lifting market seems to be in good shape, judging by what I was told by various industry members at the show.

There were some interesting innovations on display—you can see some of these on pages 19 and 20 with our photographic highlights round-up. There’ll be more in-depth coverage and thoughts on the market in our June issue.

One highlight of Modex which isn’t in the photo round-up is the CMAA Overhead Crane Safety Conference, which I was pleased to attend. It provided a very valuable source of information for me and, I’m sure, for all the attendees—both refreshing the memories of some of the more experienced operators in the room, and teaching new perspectives, experiences and lessons to the newer members of the industry.

I’m aiming to bring summaries of some of the key points of the conference to Hoist magazine in the near future.

After returning from Atlanta, via a moderately-successful attempt at sleeping on an overnight trans-Atlantic flight, there was one week back in the office before I travelled to Hannover for CeMat/Messe Hannover.

I can only imagine what it must be like for the residents of Hannover—a city with a population of around half a million—each year as industry representatives in their thousands descend on the relatively modest transport and accommodation infrastructure.

Nevertheless, the show itself was well worth attending, with plenty of companies in our industry exhibiting. There were new developments and lots of good conversations— I’ll be covering all the news in the next couple of issues.

CeMat seems to mark, for this sector at least, the beginning of a small break in trade shows until the late summer and early autumn, which will give me a welcome opportunity to unpack my suitcase.