Final report: ORGATEC 2016
Exhibitors and visitors agreed on one thing: without a doubt, ORGATEC has grown to become the creative hotspot for the modern working world. Koelnmesse Chief Operating Officer Katharina C. Hamma commented: "The results have exceeded our expectations by far. But we are especially pleased that we attracted a wider audience than large numbers of architects and designers. In particular, many senior decision-makers attended ORGATEC this year, including managers from listed companies that apply innovative, holistic workplace concepts." For Hamma, this is a reflection of the vitally important role that the modern working world plays in corporate strategy. Hendrik Hund, President of the German Interior Business Association (IBA / Industrieverband Büro und Arbeitswelt e.V.), sees the comprehensive solutions that exhibitors from around the world presented in Cologne as proof of their immense capacity for innovation. He gave his verdict on the event: "The exhibitors demonstrated in impressive style that they can provide creative solutions to today's challenges. Architects, designers and senior decision-makers from industry and commerce paid credit to this ability. This is why ORGATEC is and will remain a must-attend business event. Here the trends are set for commercial success tomorrow."
ORGATEC 2016 also achieved exceptionally impressive results in terms of its international reach. Significantly more visitors from outside Germany travelled to Cologne for the leading international trade fair for the modern working world. Growth was particularly strong amongst the share of trade visitors from the EU (+18.6%), the Middle East (+14.2%), Asia (+63%) and Africa (+13%). From start-up founders to dealers and decision-makers in medium-sized companies all the way through to senior managers at large corporations, a wide spectrum of professionals all see ORGATEC as a global networking and business platform. And a very successful one. In the visitor survey, the large majority of visitors gave extremely positive feedback when asked how the trade fair had gone for them personally. 86 per cent of respondents said that they were (very) satisfied that they had achieved their objectives for their visit to the fair. The comprehensive spectrum of products presented by the exhibitors ensured that more than 86 per cent rated the range on display as (very) good. In total, 94 per cent of visitors surveyed would recommend attending ORGATEC to their business partners.
Focus topic: holistic solutions for tomorrow's worlds of work
The topics covered at ORGATEC were as diverse as the product ranges exhibited by the 671 companies represented at the fair, a group that includes almost all the market leaders. From furnishings to lighting, flooring, acoustics and conferencing technology all the way through to information and communications technology: in all segments, visitors were able to take advantage of the high-quality range of products and concepts presented by the companies exhibiting in Cologne. Many of the concepts - a large number of which followed a holistic approach - revolved around the question of what solutions there are to meet the requirements of the new forms of collaborative working. The answers from the industry were as rich in variety as they were in creativity, covering a broad spectrum from self-sufficient desks to flexible space systems and furnishings that encourage networked working but equally promote employee health and well-being. But flexibility and health do not stop at the edge of the desk. Also on show were numerous solutions that integrate colour concepts, personalised light installations and acoustic solutions in an overall concept. Systems for team and project workspaces and flexible solutions for digitalising work environments also attracted an immense amount of interest. Demand was especially strong for products for designing complex workspaces so that they accommodate individual needs in terms of form, layout and design.
The first Work & Style conference by the highly respected weekly paper DIE ZEIT was a great success: the conference programme with an excellent line-up addressed urgent questions on the future of work. The first-class speakers and high-calibre contributors to the discussion rounds attracted an intense interest from the audience. There was also a full house every day of the ORGATEC Trend Forum, moderated by Hajo Schumacher. The forum looked closely at the importance of creativity and design in the modern world of work. The influence of design on co-working spaces could be seen by ORGATEC visitors at the special event "The smart co-working lobby". Every aspect of the co-working model's effectiveness was presented in prototype form at ORGATEC, and it proved to be an absolute magnet for visitors from the first day of the fair to the last.
The SEO Day Cologne is a further example of the new topics covered by ORGATEC. As part of the Seventh Internet Week in Cologne, the most important conference for search engine optimisation professionals in the German-speaking region was held at ORGATEC for the first time this year. Around 850 industry participants gathered in the Congress Centre North, and many of them took advantage of the opportunity to take a look at the future world of work. ORGATEC offered visitors from around the globe extraordinary installations and creative design highlights at the special event "RE/WORK - Moments of Inspiration by Ippolito Fleitz Group" and on the ORGATEC Boulevard. In cooperation with the German Interior Business Association (IBA / Industrieverband Büro und Arbeitswelt e.V.), Koelnmesse presented a range of projects based on the theme "Creativity Works". The creative exhibits did not fail to hit their target: there were amazed reactions and lively discussions aplenty as visitors put the ideas to the test. Attendance was also very high at the talks by the experts in the Speakers' Corner, who spoke on diverse topics and provided visitors with a tremendous amount of inspiration.
The next ORGATEC - leading international trade fair for the modern working world - will take place from 23 to 27 October 2018.