After a weak period over the past two years the glass sector is now looking very positively into the future proving its innovative power at glasstec with a host of highlights. 1,235 exhibitors from 52 countries were able to welcome more than 40,200 trade visitors from over 100 countries over the four days of the trade fair.
glasstec 2016 has again provided an impressive proof of its standing as the leading global trade fair for the glass sector this year. Industry experts from the areas of mechanical engineering, glass production, processing and finishing, skilled crafts, architecture/construction as well as window/façade and solar systems are very satisfied with their participation: exhibitors unanimously report concluding good business deals, promising contacts and an upbeat mood in the global glass sector, a fact expected to generate profitable follow-up business.
“Without doubt glasstec is and will remain the most important trade fair for glass machinery and plant building. This has been confirmed once again this year by the high percentage and quality of international visitors. This position now has to be built upon. A challenge we have to meet together with our partners from the glass industry, the glazier trades and Messe Düsseldorf,” says Dr. Bernd-Holger Zippe, Chairman of the Board of VDMA's Glass Technology Forum and Chairman of the glasstec Advisory Board.
In terms of visitors the quality of this trade fair is again underscored by the high percentage of top-management executives. More than half the visitors came from this decision-making level of their companies. Furthermore, over 40% of visitors attended glasstec 2016 with concrete intentions to invest. The proportion of guests travelling to Düsseldorf from abroad continues to be unrivalled, also by international standards in this industry.
Summing up the results, Joachim Schäfer, Managing Director at Messe Düsseldorf, said: “The glass sector has once again impressively demonstrated its many facets and performance potential in Düsseldorf. We were able to see an innovative industry in the nine exhibition halls that looks to the future with optimism.”
Special Show glass technology live: inspiring and pioneering
The Special Show glass technology live (gtl) in Hall 11, which was organised under the auspices of Prof. Stefan Behling, Senior Executive Partner at Foster & Partners in London, and the IBK 2 team of Stuttgart University, served as a central meeting place for the industry. As an innovation forum for future glass applications the Special Show is the most important catalyst for the international glass sector. Under the heading “Future – Glass – Performance” exhibits revolving around free-form, ultra-thin, solid and informative glass were on display here. Highlights included smart glass that can adapt to varying light conditions such as electro-chromic glass, or interactive glass as a carrier of information and electronics, as well as head-up displays and Smart-Home functions or an interactive all-glass sports floor. In the structural segment a nine meter long and four meter high all-glass slide made for surprised faces, to name but one exhibit.
Therefore the Special Show not only proved an inspiration for architects and designers with new application possibilities in building skins but also boasted a host of further developed glass products for new fields of application.
Line-Up of Conferences focuses on the Right Themes
The agendas of the three conferences “Function meets Glass”, ”engineered transparency“ and “International Architecture Congress” convinced the delegates with a spectrum of highly topical subjects and internationally renowned speakers. As early as the day before the trade fair experts from the sector industry already met at the new, 2-day conference “Function meets Glass”. Its first “edition” already managed to get together the international community of the technical world of glass registering over 120 participants from 22 countries. The scientific conference “engineered transparency” attracted 210 participants from 25 nations to Düsseldorf and shed some light on the latest developments in structural glass construction in over 70 lectures. Finally, the International Architecture Congress marked the successful close to the series with 200 delegates and exciting talks such as the one delivered by British star architect Ian Ritchie.
The next glasstec will take place in due course – in two years from 23 to 26 October 2018 in Düsseldorf.