CeMAT - The Trade Fair For Intralogistics Continues To Expand

With an annual turnover of 836 billion euros the logistics industry is the third largest in Europe. While the logistics sector as a whole has grown in single figures over recent years, intralogistics as a subdivision of that market has recorded double-digit growth. Indeed, with its high-tech systems and installations, intralogistics has now become the driving force behind the expansion of the logistics industry.

As the world's trade fair for intralogistics, CeMAT is the key barometer of the industry's performance worldwide. From 27 to 31 May the entire industry will be present once again at the Hannover Exhibition Grounds. With some 1,100 exhibitors (up from 948 in 2005) and a combined display area of 80,000 mē (2005: 72, 400 mē), the show has grown by more than ten per cent since the last event in 2005, reflecting the pace of growth within the industry itself. Around 50 per cent of the exhibiting companies are coming from outside Germany to present their latest products to an international audience at CeMAT 2008.

Four months before the start of the show, 150 first-time exhibitors have already booked 9,000 mē of stand space for this year's CeMAT. The list of names spans the globe: Vanderlande, Netherlands, Clark Forklifts, Germany, Crawford Group, Sweden, Gottwald Cranes, Germany, SauerDanfoss, Denmark, SIVAplan, Germany, Nissan Forklift Europe, Netherlands, FKI Logistex, Great Britain, Provost, France, Swisslog, Switzerland, Daifuku, Japan, Long Yan Tong Li Forklift Parts & Attachments, China, KITO Corporation, Japan, ProLogis, Germany, SEW-Eurodrive, Germany, and arvato systems technologies, Germany.

Industrial trucks, forklift trucks and accessories for all types of handling systems form the largest display categories at CeMAT. Nearly all the leading players from these sectors will be exhibiting at the show. Alongside the creation of decentralized information technologies for forklift trucks and their increasingly important function as central interfaces between logistical system elements, the trend towards more eco-friendly vehicles is undoubtedly one of the key issues influencing current trends in the market for industrial trucks. Nearly every supplier at the show will be presenting energy-efficient hybrid drive systems, cleaner engines and longer-lasting engineering components that require less maintenance.

Forming another important display category will be complete materials handling systems, shelving and racking, warehouse systems and software. Optimized logistical processes today rely on customized software solutions that are adapted to particular warehouse conditions. Only by controlling their internal processes as tightly as possible can businesses ensure the smooth running of their warehousing operation, which in turn increases the overall efficiency of their logistical processes over the long term. And in order to compete successfully in the e-business age, distributors and manufacturers need to be able to deliver the goods on time, and have instant access at all times to accurate information about their stock levels. Software solutions with built-in interfaces to other systems can make all the difference between success and failure. A successful business today is one where the warehousing operation, goods handling systems and information systems all work smoothly together, maximizing process efficiency - and delivering increased productivity.

One of the hot topics currently being discussed by intralogistics specialists is WLAN. Wireless communication is typically used in logistics to transmit relevant information to mobile workstations in the warehouse. Data on warehouse stocks and locations, for example, can be logged locally and transmitted accurately by WLAN, while industrial trucks currently in operation can be given instructions by wireless signal and integrated into the process sequence.

CeMAT 2008 is not only larger than its predecessor in 2005, it also covers a wider range of themes. Logistics real estate is a new focus of interest at CeMAT, with the market currently characterized by high demand for top-end logistics sites and a dwindling supply of available land in major population centres. The growing demands on logistics service providers and the pressures of competition in the commercial and industrial sector have increased demand for modern logistics real estate capable of meeting the challenges of today in terms of real net output ratio and flexibility.

Demand for logistics real estate is expected to remain high throughout the current year. Another area of topical interest this year is port handling equipment. The dynamic growth of the world's major coastal and inland ports shows that it is only possible to handle the growing volume of freight with the aid of state-of-the-art technology and sophisticated logistics. Many of the exhibitors at this year's CeMAT will be showing new technology and products for dockside cargo handling.

The "Intralogistics Campus" was launched specifically for CeMAT 2005 and has now been integrated into CeMAT 2008 with an expanded concept. The idea is to provide CeMAT exhibitors and fair-goers with a platform where they can find out about the latest behind-the-scenes research work in this field. The "Intralogistics Campus" is also great for schoolchildren and students who are contemplating a career in intralogistics, and want to find out about training provision and job opportunities. Featured alongside some of Germany's top institutions of higher education at the "Intralogistics Campus" will be a number of other internationally renowned research establishments, which will be presenting displays and unveiling their latest research findings.

At the heart of the 800 mē area allocated to the Campus is the Campus Forum, organized by the Scientific Association for Technical Logistics (WGTL). The Forum will host a series of presentations highlighting the latest findings from current research projects and joint ventures with industry, together with future scenarios made possible by new technology just around the corner. High on the agenda at the Campus Forum will be international networking, both within global supply chains and between industry and the scientific community.

New at this year's CeMAT is the Job & Career Market, which presents a comprehensive array of displays for job-seekers and employers on an area of approx. 400 mē in Hall 27. The exhibitors here include companies with job offers, employment agencies, training institutions, temporary work agencies, colleges and universities, bringing with them a wealth of information about career opportunities and career development.

As well as careers advice and large display boards with over 1,500 job offers, the "CareerTalks" feature - a forum-style presentation by participating exhibitors - offers further opportunities for information-gathering and inquiries. In addition, all exhibitors are invited to come along to the "CareerLounge" on the Thursday of the show (29 May), giving registered visitors a unique opportunity to get into conversation with company representatives in a relaxed and informal atmosphere. The "CareerCheck" facility - individual careers advice from specially invited personnel consultants - will be available on all five days of the show.

Together with other sponsoring partners, Deutsche Messe is organizing a high-powered lecture forum in Hall 12. The permanent forum space will host a daily changing program of talks, with speakers from different sectors of industry. Topics will include examples of best practice in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries, discussions of recent developments in logistics in Eastern.

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