Strategic Moves: Wolfram N. Diener becomes new President & CEO at Messe Düsseldorf GmbH
Erhard Wienkamp joins Board of Managing Directors
Wolfram Diener (Photo: Messe Düsseldorf, Andreas Wiese)
Gathering on 4 December 2019 the Shareholders’ Meeting of Messe Düsseldorf GmbH, presided over by the Chairman, Lord Mayor Thomas Geisel, appointed Wolfram N. Diener (55) as the new President & Chief Executive Officer and Erhard Wienkamp (61) as the new Managing Director Operative Trade Fair Business. The Shareholders’ Meeting has thereby followed the recommendation of the Supervisory Board of Messe Düsseldorf GmbH. In his new position, Wolfram Diener succeeds Werner M. Dornscheidt (65), who will retire at the end of June 2020 after almost 17 years at the helm of the Düsseldorf trade fair company. Diener will take up his post on 1 July 2020. Erhard Wienkamp will succeed Hans Werner Reinhard (49), who left the company on 30 September 2019, as Operative Managing Director on 1 January 2020.
Werner M. Dornscheidt is convinced by the new management team: “Markets are shifting, the world is becoming more international, more digital and more complex. With their many years of trade fair experience worldwide, Wolfram N. Diener and Erhard Wienkamp are the ideal torchbearers to lead Messe Düsseldorf into the future. They stand for both renewal and continuity.” He points here to their excellent industry expertise, broad management experience and international trade fair success. Dornscheidt believes this creates the best conditions for further developing Messe Düsseldorf’s product portfolio at home and abroad with the customer mind and for strengthening the Düsseldorf location.
The Board of Management at Messe Düsseldorf has become leaner as a result of the personnel changes. Alongside Wolfram N. Diener as President & CEO, Erhard Wienkamp will be the only Managing Director Operative Trade Fair Business. Bernhard J. Stempfle, responsible for finance and technology, completes the management team. Lord Mayor Thomas Geisel (56) welcomes this restructuring. Commenting on this the Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Messe Düsseldorf said: “Messe Düsseldorf will have a streamlined, powerful and above all expert management team that will give the company the necessary agility to face the future in these times of digitalisation, global challenges and growing responsibility.” Geisel believes this guarantees the strategic positioning of the trade fair therefore providing continuity both in terms of addressing customers and generating a positive economic impact for the state capital.
Wolfram N. Diener will continue to be responsible for the operational projects he has managed since joining the company in 2018: the Global Portfolio Health and Medical Technologies with the trade fairs MEDICA, COMPAMED and REHACARE International, the Global Portfolio Metals and Flow Technologies with the trade fairs GIFA, THERMPROCESS, NEWCAST, Valve World Expo, METEC, wire and Tube, the Portfolio Beauty with the leading trade fairs BEAUTY DÜSSELDORF and TOP HAIR – DIE MESSE, the Portfolio Glass Technologies with the trade fairs glasstec and tasc, the Portfolio Occupational Safety & Health with A+A – Safety, Security and Health at Work, as well as the Portfolio Caravanning & Outdoor with CARAVAN SALON DÜSSELDORF and TourNatur.
In addition he will be responsible for the Global Portfolio Plastics & Rubber with the world leading trade fair K and also for the departments International Business, Corporate Communications, Protocol and Events, Human Resources, Legal and Insurance, Internal Auditing as well as Affiliates and Subsidiaries.
A graduate of business administration, Diener was responsible for the Asian trade fair operations of Messe Frankfurt (H.K.) Ltd. from the end of the 1990s as Managing Director. In 2001 he joined the management at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre Ltd. After various management positions with Asian trade fair and congress companies, he successfully worked as a member of the management board at UBM Asia Ltd. in Hong Kong until 2018.
Erhard Wienkamp (Photo: Messe Düsseldorf, Andreas Wiese)
Erhard Wienkamp takes over the projects of Hans Werner Reinhard as Managing Director Operative Trade Fair Business: the Global Portfolio Processing & Packaging with the world’s leading trade fair interpack, the Portfolio Wine & Spirits with ProWein, the Portfolio Print Technologies with drupa, the Portfolio Retail & Retail Technologies with EuroShop and EuroCIS as well as the Portfolio Boating & Watersport Events with boot Düsseldorf. He also takes on the departments Corporate Strategic Development and Market Research. A Executive Director at Messe Düsseldorf since 2002, Erhard Wienkamp will continue to be responsible for Partner and Guest Events, Official Participations, Special Events and International Trade Fair Management.
An economics graduate, Erhard Wienkamp joined Messe Düsseldorf in 1993 after working in the Foreign Trade Department of the Federation of German and Foreign Trade (Bundesverband des Deutschen Groß- und Außenhandels) in Bonn and the German-Argentinian Chamber of Commerce in Buenos Aires. As Project Director at Messe Düsseldorf, he was initially responsible for the leading international trade fairs K and interpack, among others, later heading up the foreign division. Commenting on this Erhard Wienkamp said: “For more than 25 years I have been a driving force behind the development of Messe Düsseldorf. I am delighted to be able to use my national and international trade fair experience as a Managing Director Operative Trade Fair Business for the company.”
Diener is also pleased with his new role: “The Düsseldorf trade fair organisers have an unbeatable brand profile that can be made even more successful in the future driven by internationalisation and digitisation. I am delighted at the confidence shown in me to carry out this vision responsibly with the help of an outstanding team.” In his role as new President & CEO he would like to focus further on the international trade fair portfolio, the optimisation of the exhibition centre at the home base, on corporate responsibility and digital transformation.
With a revenue of around EUR 294m in 2018, the Messe Düsseldorf Group has maintained its position as one of Germany’s most successful trade fair companies. 26,800 exhibitors presented their products to 1.14m trade visitors at events in Düsseldorf last year. Compared with previous events, this was an increase in the numbers of both exhibitors and visitors. The Düsseldorf exhibition centre hosts around 50 trade fairs in five sectors of expertise: machinery, plants and equipment; retail, crafts and services; health and medical technologies; lifestyle and beauty; and leisure. The trade fairs include 23 own number-one trade fairs, as well as, currently, 15 strong partner and guest events. Also, its subsidiary Düsseldorf Congress held around 2,200 conventions, corporate events, conferences and meetings in 2018, attracting around 1.6m delegates in all. In addition, the Messe Düsseldorf Group organises 70 proprietary events, joint events and contracted events in other countries and is one of the leading export platforms in the world. The international attendance is particularly high with the capital goods trade fairs of Messe Düsseldorf GmbH. In 2018, Messe Düsseldorf's own events in machinery, plants and equipment attracted approx. 77% international exhibitors and 70% trade visitors from other countries. In all, Düsseldorf trade fairs were attended by customers from about 180 countries. The group runs a global network of 77 international offices for 141 countries, including 7 international subsidiaries.