An international affair

22 August 2014

CeMAT 2014 in Germany attracted more than 50,000 visitors from across the globe. We look at why it was a success and speak to some of the key exhibitors at this year’s event.

The material-handling sector is a fast-moving, innovative industry. Customers are always on the look out for new technology, applications and services that will enable them to car ry out their important roles more effi ciently and effectively than before.

It should come as no surprise then that shows such as CeMAT have had to frequently meet rising expectations from the visitors and exhibitors that make up this fascinating industry. No longer can a trade event simply be a way for companies to showcase their latest products in isolation. A successful trade event in 2014 needs to offer education, networking opportunities, technology showcases and much more.

Increasing numbers

Even if you're only looking at the basic numbers, CeMAT 2014 in Hannover, Germany, succeeded. According to the organiser's post-show report, 1,025 exhibitors showcased more than 4,000 innovations across the event's many zones.

"Staged under the slogan of 'Smart - Integrated - Effi cient', this year's CeMAT demonstrated that high-tech logistics is essential for virtually any business which wants to remain viable and competitive, explained Dr. Andreas Gruchow, member of the managing board at Deutsche Messe in charge of CeMAT.

He added: CeMAT's status as the world's fl agship intralogistics fair was impressively underscored by live displays of complete logistics solutions and products in our halls and on the open-air site.

"Exhibitors came to Hannover with high expectations for generating international leads, and those expectations were met. CeMAT represents a booming industrial sector and this year yielded 1.7 million business leads. That is a signifi cant increase compared to 2011. Our exhibitors are very satisfi ed and have closed deals Diverse attendance

As I've previously touched upon in this magazine, what was particularly impressive was the diverse nature of the 53,000 visitors that attended the May event. Attracting people from 65 nations in total, 33 percent of these attended from abroad, while Europe took a 70 percent share.

This was followed by Asia with 13 percent, the Americas with 9 percent, Africa with 5 percent and Australia with 3 percent. Finally, the top 15 visitor nations were the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Poland, the Czech Republic, Italy, Austria, France, the United States, Belgium, Spain, Switzerland, Sweden, Russia, South Africa, and China. According to the organisers, there was also a strong increase in attendance from the United Kingdom, Poland, the United States and Russia.

"Impressive attendance figures for Russia and Brazil clearly demonstrate that our CeMAT events abroad, in this case CeMAT Russia and CeMAT South America, had a positive influence on attendance here at CeMAT in Hannover," added Gruchow.

Split into various zones, namely the Move & Lift, Store & Load, Pick & Pack, Logistics IT and Manage & Service display categories, Eighty percent of visitors in attendance were classed as decision-makers that had a purchasing authority, arriving at CeMAT with "concrete projects and investment plans".

Elsewhere, according to the organisers, visitors from abroad represented approximately twice the investment potential of their German counterparts.

Exhibitor focus

For Christian Kugler, key account manager at radio systems manufacturer HBCradiomatic GmbH, CeMAT proved to be a worthwhile event, despite perhaps not meeting the companies expectations.

"Generally, the 2014 issue of CeMAT hasn't been as busy as the events before. This was an impression we could share in our conversations with other exhibitors from various industry branches," he explains. "Still, we were happy to generate some very interesting leads through the week in Hannover."

According to Kugler, the company's main focus at CeMAT 2014 was the presentation of a "comprehensive package of innovations" at its booth.

He says: "For instance, we have shown our new technos 2 and spectrum E joystick transmitters that come with outstanding and fairly revolutionary features. Furthermore, we have presented some brand new smart options that are particularly helpful when servicing cranes and machinery.

"For example, our innovative radiomatic report concept supports the easy and efficient management of access rights to machinery, as well as the collection of valuable operational data of radio control systems. The customer always has a variety of useful information at hand, which can be used for the planning of service work, among others."

Another focus for HBC-radiomatic was its 2.4 GHz technology which "scores big" as a reliable and efficient fully-automated frequency management that can be used with virtually all HBC products.

"Visitors at our booth were interested in new products and features to optimize operator safety, comfort and efficiency. Here, we could pull a lot of attention with our technos 2, spectrum E, radiomatic report and radiomatic photon as all of them are targeting safety, comfort and efficiency," he explains.

Electric chain hoist expertise

Elsewhere, Matthias Hühn, the general manager of LIFTKET, explains that the CeMAT event is still a good way to meet customers and end users from all over the world despite the changing nature of the show.

"Since the organizers have spread their CeMAT concept to many countries all over the world we believe that there is no good reason any more for many potential customers to travel to Hannover to visit the show there," he explains.

"At second we find that it is not beneficial for the quantity of visitors that electric motors, inverters, gears, transmissions and similar products are part of a show four weeks prior to CeMAT. All crane manufacturers need these components to complete their products and would expect to find them at the same place.

Hühn adds: Saying this means that the number of visitors especially from countries far away from Germany has been reduced but of course their quality has been much better compared with the older times.

"Further the Hannover exhibition company plan to have a Hannover CeMAT every second year. We find that a strong CeMAT in Hannover, held every third year together with electric drives and transmissions and a second one in China would be a wise concept."

Among the products showcased by the company was its new Liftket electric chain hoist with 15. tonne capacity one double fall of chain, the hoist will go into serial production very soon.

The manufacturer also has a short headroom hoist with rack and pinion electric trolley as well as a hoist with two load chains for synchronous lifting.

For Hühn, the company's number one target in Hannover was to find new customers and to show the latest developments to them. "At second we want to see our well known partners from all over the world to discuss current business issues and to show the latest products to them as well," he adds.

"Hannover is not known as a place to sign big orders. We have met a lot of our existing partners, had interesting talks although we would have liked to see more potential customers from the USA, from Middle East Asia and especially South America."

Industrial innovation

According to Hans Siertsema, managing director at Gebuwin Metal Products, its industrial winches took centre stage at an event that lived up to its expectations thanks to the diverse international nature of the event.

"We expected to have a hand full of new contact per exhibition day; we did see many more in numbers. 40 percent of the interested visitors to our stand were new contacts," he explained.

For Gebuwin, the key product it was exhibiting was its larger capacity hand winches up to 7500 kg, battery drill operating winches, stainless steel versions and custom build special application winches. "We noticed from the many request the need for smaller series of custom build or modified winches rather than the standard series. We did anticipate this would be the case and therefore had more of these product on the show that three years ago," he added.

Turkish presence

2014 marked was the first time Turkish crane equipment manufacturer Guralp exhibited at CeMAT. According to Mehmet Yikilmaz, marketing manager at the company, its expectations were met in a "satisfying way".

He explained: "We were believing that we will have such a different visitor profile compared to many fairs we've participating. In this regard, we have spent a good exhibition period in which our expectations came true.

"Participating in this exhibition; our main purpose was to find out new partners and trying to establish new dealerships from companies participating from different countries, especially the European countries. When viewed from this aspect, we can say this goal has been achieved. We didn't have a direct sales expectation for the fair, however we had the opportunity to contact a few clients, which we can call end-users and quoted for their requirements."

For Yikilmaz, the company showcased two of its main product groups. One of them was the chain hoist, the other one was the wire rope hoist. Both of its two products won the recognition of the visitors, he says.

He added: "We can say that our chain hoist was one step ahead. Also our wire rope hoist was primarily admired with its compact and neat design. Being a member of FEM, the owned security software and hardware were also featuring our companies product.

"In our standard product range, we have chain hoists starting from 125 kg's capacity, up to 2.000 kg's. For the wire rope hoists, our product range differs between 1 ton - 80 ton's. Within the scope of special projects, we're capable of designing/ producing different kind of lifting equipment in different capacities, lifting speeds and working classes."

French future

Comege is a French manufacturer of jib cranes, gantry cranes and spreader beams. Jean-Michel Hirtz, sales area manager at the company says the 2014 show was a positive one for the business, resulting in the business attracting 15 percent more contacts than their previous event. "We were there to find some new dealers for our products and we need an international fair to do that. Indeed, we are currently leader in France and the only way to grow again is to spread our market through good dealers who know their local market," he says. A jib crane is not always easy to expor t, sometimes the delivery price can reach 50% or more of the price of the crane itself. Consequently we gave the priority to the lightweight products, like our aluminium range. And we were right, 80% of our visitors were interested especially in this range."

Elsewhere, Chinese manufacturer Toolee says the event met its targets for both leads and sales with the company' s lifting and lashing products proving popular.

According to Combilift, the extent of the product development since the last CeMAT "was evident" on its stand, with 22 models on show. "Since the introduction of the new Combi-WR reach stacker range, at CeMAT for the first time, we now offer handling solutions with load capacities from 1,450kg up to over 80t," the company added.

"The large stand featured a demo area where visitors could appreciate the capabilities of the tr ucks at close quarters and regular per formances of the very popular Combi-CB dancing forklift routine were, as ever, a big attraction," they explained.

Among the product premieres at CeMAT included its smallest Combilifts to date, the Combi-WR and its multidirectional counterpart the Combi- WR 4, which won this year' s UK FLTA award for ergonomics.

"At the other end of the size spectrum the new Straddle Car rier model, the Combi-SC Top-Lift, was hard to miss. The electric C4000E and a new sideloader model completed the CeMAT firsts," the company added.

Elsewhere, Paolo Gobbato, overseas sales manager of radio remote controls manufacturer REMdevice, explains that the event "definitely" lived up to its expectations both from an organisational point of view and also in terms of the number of visitors that came along to its stand.

He added: "There were quite clearly many people that had pre-planned visit us and we were also impressed with the quantity of visitors that have since proved to be very important leads for us. Consequently, I am ver y happy to say that our target figures for leads and sales are being met in this post show period.

"We were exhibiting our full range of remote control products, all of which were consistently popular. Of course, all our products are designed specifically for materials handling and CeMAT visitors were very interested in finding out about our latest innovations and which REMdevice radio controls would best suit their specific application."

"Our previous show was Conexpo 2014 in Las Vegas which is very much geared towards the constr uction sector rather than intra-logistics as is CeMAT, however at both shows I found the trend was very much for a tr ustworthy well designed product with the safety features of the product always a major consideration," explained Gobbato.

For radio controls manufacturer Ikusi, CeMAT presented the company with the opportunity to showcase its R13 receiver, Twin Synchro software and I-Kontrol remote controls. The R13 is a "compact and safe receiver" designed to cater for the needs of the industrial sector, with this specific version designed especially for working in areas with a risk of explosion.

"The new receiver comes in three versions and is equipped with multiband radio with full-duplex communication, frequency management against interference, external leds for error diagnosis and removable Sim Eeprom module. It also stands out as highly customisable in the field, and for its easy and rapid maintenance," the company added.

Elsewhere,the company's Twin Synchro software, which was on show, is pitched as a compact solution for synchronising cranes in tandem configuration from a single control station thanks to the remote control receivers themselves. Hoisting and lifting product supplier Rema Holland enjoyed a successful CeMAT with visitors flocking to its stand throughout.

The Dutch company recently introduced a new patented invention, the Rema DG10 Drum Grab, an easy-touse, portable and serviceable clamp that is claimed to make "most of the similar products on the market redundant".

According to the Maastricht-based business, the Drum Grab is selfcentering and keeps hold of the dr um under any circumstances, which is enabled by the resilient pressure on the chemical resistant polyurethane spring.

Jo Dullens, chief executive of Rema, said: "It is a product that is creative in itself, aimed for a lot of industrial markets. The design makes for a safe, easy and quick way of lifting and lowering 220 litre dr ums in horizontal or vertical position, to just about any lifting device.

"The Drum Grab is also per fect for extracting a drum from the centre of a group. No more wrestling dr ums out of the way to get to the one you want. Last but not least, we designed it under our own Rema brand, which is one of the pillars of our company."

Rema Hollad at CeMAT 2014
Gebuwin technology on show
Combilift showcased a diverse range of equipment at the 2014 event
Comege at CeMAT 2014
Paolo Gobbato from REMdevice
LIFTKET: A key name at CeMAT 2014
Industry expertise: Gebuwin
Ikusi technology
HBC-radiomatic: The company was a major presence at this year's event
Toolee at CeMAT 2014