The shopping experience sweetened with service and quality: Filling shopping bags to be made fun again

90,836 experts attended EuroShop 2005

Significant increases in the number of visitors from abroad

After a successful five-day run, the world's No. 1 trade fair dedicated to the investment needs of the retail industry, EuroShop 2005 drew to a close in Düsseldorf on Wednesday, 23 February. The 1,659 exhibitors from 48 countries were of one mind in rating the contacts forged and deals closed at the fair as good to excellent.

A total of more than 90,836 visitors (previous event: 92,532) flocked to the city on the Rhine to take in the broad showcase of products, technologies, trends and concepts devoted to the retail industry and its partners. As many as 60 percent of them came from outside Germany - an increase of roughly 10 percent over the prior event three years ago. Visitors from overseas (27 percent), in particular, attended in far greater force. Large delegations turned out from China, Japan, Brazil and the USA, for instance. Eastern European countries and Russia, in particular, were also well represented. Overall, EuroShop 2005 gathered visitors from 79 nations together in its halls.

Messe Düsseldorf and the EuroShop exhibitors were highly satisfied with the outcome of the event. "We are delighted with the step up in the international reach of EuroShop, especially the amount of interest it is generating in global growth markets. Our exhibitors deserve a real pat on the back - their innovative drive once again acted as a magnet attracting the entire industry,” says Wilhelm Niedergöker, Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf, expressing his gratification at the results of the EuroShop 2005 run.

"It is unfortunate, however, that German retailers did not make more use of this unique event, staged right on their doorstep, to catch up on global and forward-looking trends. Especially in times like these, marked by consumer restraint, you need to grab fresh ideas to entice customers back into stores,” added Niedergöker.

Particularly gratifying among exhibitors was the international profile and decision-making powers of EuroShop 2005 visitors. Almost three out of four EuroShop attendees held managerial positions and 57.2 percent of those belonged to the top executive echelons. The companies showcased were unanimous in voting EuroShop attendance more of a must for the retail industry than ever before. Whether active in store equipment, sales promotions, information and security systems or exhibition stand construction, exhibitors recrowned the fair the world's No. 1 communications and order platform for the retail industry. The exhibiting companies were unanimous that nowhere are they able to address their customers as selectively as at EuroShop. Following the positive impetus injected into the industry in Düsseldorf, most exhibitors now not only anticipate the trend in retail investment to turn around soon but are looking forward to brisk post-fair business.

The visitor survey turned out equally sterling results - 97 percent of attendees reported that they were satisfied to highly satisfied with their trip to the fair.

The EuroShop message came across loud and clear - customers are once again setting great store by service. Which means that retailers can't afford to focus exclusively on cost management and instead need to concentrate primarily on offering convenience, quality and a genuine retail experience.

The EuroShop trends and innovations left no one in any doubt - the future belongs to lifestyle formats that blur the boundaries between previously applicable product categories. To this end, many concepts aim to evoke an emotional response by appealing to the senses, whether in the form of olfactory marketing, eye-catching shapes or unusual colouring. It's no longer enough for shopfitting to provide a showcase for goods; above all it must create an atmosphere and convey a sense of well-being in order to enhance shoppers' buying enjoyment. Which is why the "Designer Village”, which debuted at EuroShop 2005, was warmly welcomed by trade visitors.

All in all, the extensive EuroShop ancillary programme, including congresses, special presentations and forums, was extremely well received by visitors. The "Retail Innovation Congress” jointly organised by the EuroHandelsinstitut (The International Retail Network - EHI) and the North Rhine-Westphalian Ministry for Economics and Labour attracted 700 participants - the highest number since it premiered in 2001. The 250 participants from more than 30 countries in the EHI-coordinated "Architects' and Designers' Congress” benefited from ideas, strategies and hands-on expertise shared by big names in the international industry.

Trade visitors at EuroShop 2005 were particularly impressed by presentations and stand designs showcased by new blood in the industry, such as those unveiled in the special presentation "Vision Point” by the Coburg University of Applied Sciences in cooperation with other German tertiary institutions.

The next EuroShop will be staged in Düsseldorf from 23 to 27 February 2008.

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February 2005