Final Report: Anniversary Edition of SHK ESSEN Again Popular Sectoral Meeting Place

556 Exhibitors and Around 48,500 Visitors Provided Impetus for Skilled Trades

The best mood in the sector appropriate for the 50th anniversary: SHK ESSEN has provided impressive proof of its position as the most important sectoral meeting place in the North-West. 556 exhibitors from 18 nations for the first time presented their innovations at the trade fair for sanitation, heating, air conditioning and renewable energies. This impressive performance show at Messe Essen met with great interest amongst the around 48,500 trade visitors: The course of the fair was characterised by the intensive exchange of specialist opinions and by successful discussions.

The exhibitors highlighted, above all, the quality and high decision-making competence of the visitors. 90 percent of the companies were satisfied with their business success; more than one third concluded business deals directly at the fair. The practitioners, including craftsmen, traders, specialist planners, architects and operators, praised the comprehensive range on offer at SHK ESSEN 2016: The spectrum extended from energy-efficient heating technology, innovative bathroom design for all generations and sanitation technology via work-simplifying tools and perfectly matching EDP right up to air conditioning and ventilation installations as well as solutions for drinking water hygiene.

"SHK ESSEN 2016 shows: The trade fair is a fixed date in the sector. Our thanks go to the exhibitors for their commitment because their presentation was once more very top-class. With SHK ESSEN, we have jointly created a platform which is arousing the enthusiasm of the practitioners," according to Oliver P. Kuhrt, CEO of Messe Essen. Hans-Peter Sproten, Managing Director of the North Rhine-Westphalia Trade Association for Sanitation, Heating and Air Conditioning (Fachverband SHK NRW), the ideal sponsor of SHK ESSEN: "The skilled trades are making an absolutely positive assessment of the anniversary edition of this fair. In particular, the very high visitor frequency on Wednesday and Thursday is cause for joy. Not only the quality of the sanitation booths but also the presentations of the new technologies such as fuel cell technology contributed to providing impetus for the sanitation, heating and air conditioning sector."
94 percent of the exhibitors and 90 percent of the visitors now already stated that they would also participate in the next SHK ESSEN which will take place at Messe Essen from March 7 to 10, 2018.

SHK ESSEN Again Stage for Innovations Ready for the Market

SHK ESSEN is the platform on which innovations ready for the market are presented. The Sanitation area concentrated on a plus of comfort. It was possible to see not only spacious showers with favourite settings at the push of a button but also individually fabricated bathtubs, fittings with touch or foot operation as well as heatable and easy-to-clean shower WCs. Energy efficiency was the defining subject as far as heating technology was concerned. The exhibits included economical condensing appliance solutions in appealing designs, radiators with low consumptions or also combined heat and power stations with additional storage combinations. Moreover, a lot of manufacturers showed solutions for mobile terminals with which the heating systems can be controlled using an app or a web portal. Ventilation devices were one of the main focal points in the Air Conditioning area. The introduced exhibits included small, quiet and efficient decentralised ventilation installations with heat recovery and resulting heating cost savings. The range on offer was rounded off by exhibitors with tools and EDP solutions appropriate for this purpose.
With its digital innovation the SHK ESSEN app, the trade fair also met precisely the wishes of exhibitors and visitors. Up to the third day of the fair, the app had been downloaded so often that it occupied twelfth place in the most popular iOS apps all over Germany in the Economics category.

Trade Fair Extended Its Focus to the Complete House Environment

On the occasion of its 50th anniversary, SHK ESSEN has been set up on an even wider basis with three exhibition areas. Thus, the field of refrigeration technology was extended: Around 70 exhibitors presented solutions for air conditioning, refrigeration and ventilation technology. Moreover, there was, for the first time, a special information area for refrigeration technology organised by the Information Centre for Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Energy Technology. The objective of the first SHK ESSEN appearance of the Federal Association of the Firms in the Gas and Water Trades (figawa) focused on the field of supply and waste disposal management to a greater extent. Around 50 of the companies affiliated to figawa were represented at SHK ESSEN 2016. Energy suppliers also gave their premieres at the trade fair; they introduced their concepts relating to all aspects of energy supply, energy services and water supply. With these exhibition areas, SHK ESSEN now covered the complete house environment from energy generation and access routes to the house and house technology itself.

Promotion of the Up-and-Coming Generation: More Than 1,000 Pupils in the TRAINEES Lounge

For 43 percent of the trade visitors, further education was one objective of their visits to the fair. The comprehensive supporting programme offered them numerous possibilities of transferring knowledge and exchanging ideas. On the booth of SHK NRW, experts provided information in lectures, amongst other subjects, about smart homes, fuel cells and the current refrigerant situation. On the second Fitters Day on the Saturday of the fair, around 180 customer service fitters of specialised SHK guild businesses from North Rhine-Westphalia sought further education, amongst other subjects, about fire protection and conflict management. "It is a great matter of concern for us to provide not only the bosses but also the faces in situ, the customer service fitters, with technical and legal training," according to Hans-Peter Sproten, Managing Director of Fachverband SHK NRW. "With the absolutely well-visited TRAINEES Lounge and the Trainees Rally, the association was also able to show young people in a practical form what fantastic chances are actually offered by the occupational profiles in the SHK trades, above all the training occupation to become an installation mechanic for the SHK trades."

Over 1,000 pupils from North Rhine-Westphalia, largely from comprehensive schools and vocational colleges, took up SHK NRW's offer in order to obtain information about the career opportunities in the skilled trades. In the TRAINEES Lounge, they were able to speak with experts directly and also to practise their first manual operations of skilled tradesmen.
The special show organised by the Federation of German Heating Industry (BDH) concentrated on things worth knowing about all aspects of modern heating technology. In addition to already established technologies, the presentation also took account of topical trends in the heat market, e.g. the top subject of "Digital Heating".


SHK ESSEN 2016: Figures in Detail

SHK ESSEN 2016 registered 556 (in 2014: 560) exhibitors from 18 (15) nations. Also including the forecast for the last day of the fair, there were around 39,500 trade visitors registered by the Society for Voluntary Control of Fair and Exhibition Statistics (FKM). In addition, not only international participants but also, amongst others, press representatives, participants in the Housing Industry campaign, guests of honour and sponsors visited the event. The proportion of trade visitors was 96.8 (95.5) percent.

Exhibitors' Opinions

Andrea Bußmann, Managing Director, Grohe Deutschland / Regional Vice President Sales Central Europe:

In 2016, too, SHK ESSEN has again offered us a very good platform in order to present our new products and topical highlights to our specialist partners in person. The number of visitors to our fair booth was as high as accustomed and we had the opportunity to hold many interesting discussions and to obtain feedback about our innovations. In particular, attention focused on the GROHE Rainshower® SmartControl shower system which offers an exceptional shower experience with its clever push-button technology as well as on the GROHE Sensia® Arena shower WC. In the kitchen segment, a lot of interest was aroused, above all, by the new GROHE Blue® Home system whose space-saving refrigeration unit could be reduced to almost half of the previous size. And our new technology for operating the kitchen taps by FootControl also received a lot of attention.

Manfred Stratmann, Sales Manager for Germany, Hansa Armaturen GmbH:

SHK ESSEN is very important to us. The course of the fair was very good and we had high-quality discussions on our booth. The Benelux Day went down very well. At SHK ESSEN, we have introduced the Hansa Bluebox - that is a flush-mounted system. Here at the national trade fair with the highest number of visitors, we were able to provide our target group, the specialised skilled trades, with information about this. Moreover, we are proud to accompany Messe Essen for such a long time: we have been an exhibitor since the very beginning! We are looking forward to the next SHK ESSEN.

Stefan Thiel, Sales Manager, Buderus Deutschland:

As a trade fair with a very high number of visitors, SHK ESSEN is ideal in order to introduce the innovative products from Buderus and their outstanding, intelligent design to the sector. Therefore, Buderus was again in situ this year, too, and has presented heating technology of the future. For example, we have, after enthusiastic feedback from specialised tradesmen and final customers, extended our Titanium line by new products and presented these on the very well-visited booth as innovations. There was also great interest in the Logamatic 5000 - a control device which offers innovative touch operation for larger installations, diverse setting possibilities and reliable remote parameterisation and will be launched on to the market in the middle of 2016.

Horst King, Sales Manager, Kaldewei Deutschland:

SHK ESSEN 2016 was a great success for us. The fair was very well-visited on all the days of the fair and we were able to hold a lot of constructive discussoins with the trade public on our booth. We have been particularly pleased that our product lines made of Kaldewei steel/enamel in a uniform design language and materiality are matching the pulse of the times. For example, our new enamelled drain cover for all floor-level shower areas with a size-90 drain met with great approval amongst our customers.

Frank Hoffmann, Sales Manager, Rems GmbH & Co KG:

As an exhibitor at the very beginning 50 years ago, we already used SHK ESSEN as a chance to open up the regional distribution channels. SHK ESSEN is important to us not only as an image medium but also for our active sales. We have introduced a new XL pressing machine which received very positive ratings from our customers and interested parties. Halfway through the period of this year's fair, we had already achieved the same results on the fair booth as two years ago. We were also able to convince the visitors with demonstrations on our fair booth and to provide proof of our company's claim: "Innovative, Professional and Reliable" directly in situ, too.

Andreas Lücke, General Director, Federation of German Heating Industry (BDH):

Our congratulations on the 50th anniversary! Messe Essen is the optimum venue for this performance show of the sector. We consider SHK ESSEN to be another success for the heating manufacturers which were fully represented here. The response was outstanding and the visitors were characterised by their high quality. As far as technology is concerned, the trend is clearly heading towards systems which combine efficiency and renewable energies. Highlights at the fair were digital heating systems and hybrid installations plus the fuel cell as the top runner. BDH's special show relating to all aspects of modern heating technologies also met with great interest.

Matthias Wunn, Marketing and Communication Manager, Grünbeck Wasseraufbereitung GmbH:

We were very satisfied with the start and course of the fair. Our visitors focused on our new products and innovations which were very popular. The discussions and the contacts were very good. The quality of the trade visitors was high without exception. The venue in Essen is very attractive to us and, of course, the large catchment area is very advantageous. Because of the very positive experience, we can imagine again taking part in the next SHK ESSEN, too.

Thilo C. Pahl, Chairman of the Industrial Forum for Sanitation and Managing Director of Bette GmbH & Co. KG:

The 50th anniversary has once more proven why SHK ESSEN is a fair with strong regional significance and with radiance into the Benelux countries. The fair has gone well; Wednesday and Thursday were strong days and the Benelux Day was successful, too. SHK ESSEN is a contact fair and its plus points are the regionality and the short paths. Business relationships are extended and maintained here. That is what makes the fair.

Katja Berghaus, Marketing Services Manager, Vaillant Deutschland GmbH & Co. KG:

SHK ESSEN was again very well-visited this year, too. In addition to the specialised skilled trades, a lot of decision takers from the wholesale trade, architects, planners and building owners have visited our booth. The fair has become firmly established as an important sectoral meeting place and platform for the presentation of innovations.

Dr. Alexander Wuthnow, Sales Manager, Junkers Deutschland:

This year, too, SHK ESSEN has done full justice to its reputation and presented itself as the, as accumstomed, successful meeting and networking platform for industry, commerce, skilled trades and services. However, even further and, at least, just as important meaning is being attached to the networking term at this SHK ESSEN, i.e. as one of the predominant subjects in the discussions with our partners. Smart heating and smart homes, i.e. connectivity as the intelligent and future-oriented networking of house technology, were amongst the top subjects of discussion on our well-visited booth. For us, it was the right decision to have come to Essen again.

Robert Beil, Product Manager, wodtke GmbH:

SHK ESSEN is an outstanding platform in order to present yourself to the trade public. A lot of qualitative discussions highlight this impression. The wodtke development called smart home fire (networked heating with wood pellets and living space) met with the highest interest.