Starting in 2017, Koelnmesse will be permanently achieving an annual turnover of 300 million euros
2016 will be the last year in a long time that Koelnmesse will have negative results: "Starting in 2017, we will achieve sustained profits and expect average annual turnover of more than 300 million euros", explains the trade fair company's CEO, Gerald Böse, with regard to the financial outlook. "Even in 2017, we intend to achieve turnover of 320 million euros - similar to our record year 2015."
For Koelnmesse, this sustainable growth with increasing turnover from the events in Cologne and in foreign markets is the continuation of its good development in the past few years since the end of the financial and economic crisis. This is not only the result of a strict efficiency program, but also of the efforts to strengthen existing trade fairs, strategic expansion of international business and the increasing implementation of digital business models and services.
2016: 268 million euros in turnover with single-digit loss
Koelnmesse expects to show 268 million euros in turnover for the completed 2016 financial year, which clearly exceeds the planned figures. This is also reflected by its result: at under 10 million euros, the expected loss is in the single digits and thus also significantly less than planned. On average, turnover has increased by more than six percent compared to the respective previous events. Individual trade fairs such as the dmexco or ORGATEC have even grown by double-digit percentages. Turnover from the guest events business of the wholly owned subsidiary Koelnmesse Ausstellungen GmbH is also above forecast for 2016 at over 13 million euros.
Starting in 2017, Koelnmesse will remain sustainably profitable as the company is planning to show positive results throughout the entire five-year period included in its medium-term planning. This positive development will enable Koelnmesse to make extensive investments in its site as part of the Koelnmesse 3.0 program, which is intended to run until 2030, as well as in its events, continued internationalization and demand-based digitalization. It will therefore achieve true transformation into a trade fair of the future, strengthen its position on the market and remain among the top ten trade fair organizers worldwide.
The new "Digital Media, Entertainment and Mobility" competence field
With the future topics of "Digital Media, Entertainment and Mobility", Koelnmesse is establishing yet another global competence field. It includes the successful and future-oriented events gamescom, dmexco, photokina, INTERMOT and THE TIRE COLOGNE as well as the new event DIGILITY. Thus Koelnmesse is expanding on its existing strategic cornerstones "Global Competence in Food" in the field of nutrition and the "Global Competence in Furniture, Interiors and Design" of its interiors fairs and sustainably strengthening its profile for its customers as well as the general public.
Commitment in South America continuing to bear fruit
Koelnmesse is also continuing to expand its global portfolio with regard to interiors, nutrition and digital topics in the relevant foreign markets as well. In addition to Southeast Asia and India, the company's increased commitment in South America is continuing to bear fruit with its six current events in Brazil and Colombia. There were four premiers in 2016 in foreign markets: the Dairy Industry Conference in India, the Pueri Expo in Brazil, the Alimentec in Columbia and the Cibus Tec in Italy. The premier of the ProFood Tech in Chicago is planned for 2017.
The investment program Koelnmesse 3.0 is gaining ground
Koelnmesse 3.0 measures advanced considerably in 2016. The objective of the investment program, which is the largest in the company's history with a volume of over 600 million euros, is to make Cologne the most attractive city-centre trade fair site in the world starting in 2030.
In 2016 focus was placed on the first new construction measure. The foundation was laid in September for the new trade fair parking garage adjacent to the Zoobrücke bridge, which will be providing parking for 3, 260 cars as well as extensive logistics space for stand installation and breakdown, while also reducing the traffic in the city districts to the right of the Rhine river starting at the end of 2017 / beginning of 2018. The winning design for the new buildings created by the Cologne-based architectural firm JSWD was selected in March 2016 and planning for Hall 1plus, Confex and the Terminal have been further detailed. Important restoration measures were also implemented and included early start-up of the combined heat and power unit and transitioning to district heating in January 2016, initial roof renovations as well as replacement of building automation technology for the entire exhibition site, to name just a few examples. In 2017 this progress will be continued in leaps and bounds. Construction of Hall 1plus will be started at the end of year and the space will be available for exhibitors, visitors and guest events during the construction work as a full high-quality exhibition hall starting in 2019. Optimally connected to the existing halls, it will permit flexible use and thus accelerate implementation of Koelnmesse 3.0.
Initial digital strategy milestones achieved
Koelnmesse is also working intensively on getting its business and its site in shape for the digital future. In 2016 the first steps included introduction of new hardware and software including a cloud-based operating system, with which Koelnmesse has optimized its own processes. For the imm cologne interiors fair in January 2017, the B2B platform "ambista" was launched for the interiors industry and represents an entirely new type of offering on the trade fair market with its unique combination of content and relationship management. Additional new digital services will follow and focus will continue to be placed on digitalization of the trade fair site itself.
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