Euro Attractions Show 2012 a Big Success
Euro Attractions Show (EAS) 2012, Europe’s largest trade show and conference for the amusement parks and attractions industry, was held 9 to 11 October in Berlin and set records for the number of exhibitors, size of exhibit floor, and education programme attendance.
Preliminary estimates indicate 8,100 attractions industry professionals, including 5,800 buyers from all over the world participated in the event which was held in Berlin for the first time at Messe Berlin Convention Center. The show spanned five halls of the convention center and featured exhibits from an unprecedented 367 companies from more than 80 countries on a record 9.043 net square meters of exhibit space.
Doug T. Smith, VP of Business Development with the exhibitor PrimePlay by WhiteWater West summarizes what many exhibitors experienced: “Last week’s EAS show was a very good show for us at Prime/Hopkins. The show had a very professional feel to it, the staff was professional and the overall experience of the events was very good. Also most importantly the show was well attended. We came away with many opportunities that I believe shows this region is growing. “
Operators of amusement parks, waterparks, zoos, aquariums, museums, indoor play grounds, casinos, and holiday parks used the trade show to catch up on trends and order new attractions for the summer season 2013 and beyond. They looked at new innovations in a variety of products and services including multi-dimensional cinemas, interactive dark rides and roller coasters with integrated multimedia, the newest trends in ticketing and queuing systems, and integrated theming products.
EAS Showcases Strength of the Industry and Its Importance to European Economy
Roland Mack, chairman of the board of IAAPA and managing partner of Europa-Park in Rust, Germany emphasized: “EAS 2012 demonstrated the increasing importance of our industry for the entire European tourism sector. Attendance to the event is evidence that the industry is resilient in times of the financial and economic crisis. The volume of investments from this industry in Europe of about 400 million Euro per year demonstrates this as well. EAS is now recognized as the most important trade show in Europe. Once again, we did not only prove that the amusement industry supplies services on highest qualitative level but also the high innovative power of our dynamic economic sector.”
In his welcoming speech at EAS, MP Ernst Burgbacher, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economics and Technology and Commissioner of the Federal Government for medium-sized businesses and tourism in Germany, referred to the growing importance of the amusement industry: “Particularly in the rural areas of Germany where the amusement sector with its highly medium-sized character is an important economic factor and job driver with a high value creation because of its entrepreneurial spirit that is part of its daily business. This is impressively demonstrated by its economic power of 8.6 billion Euro turnover in Europe.”
Extensive Conference Programme Highlights Industry’s Trends and Hot Topics
The comprehensive conference programme at EAS 2012 was a resounding success with more than 1.200 participants, 21% more than at EAS 2011 in London. The seminars addressed several key issues of the industry: new technologies, Halloween-events, emerging markets, trends in the food and beverage sector, sustainability, social media, safety issues and the growth of indoor play grounds. The attendees also benefited from the presentations at the leadership breakfast on the second day of EAS where Roland Mack and Fernando Aldecoa, CEO of PortAventura in Spain shared best practices and their perspective of the development of the industry.
Tours to the IAAPA member attractions Tropical Islands and Filmpark Babelsberg and the two networking events, the Opening Reception and the Young Professionals Reception were sold out.
IAAPA implements new Intellectual Property (IP) program
IP counselors hired by IAAPA to be on site at EAS 2012 met with numerous exhibitors regarding intellectual property issues in Asia, Europe, and the United States. This IP outreach was educational and helped raise awareness of the intellectual property matters in the attractions industry. During EAS 2012, IAAPA’s IP representatives addressed more than 12 cases that required the removal of catalogs, posters, or other content from the trade show floor or involved issues that appeared to be in violation of IAAPA's IP policy. The same program will be in effect for IAAPA Attractions Expo 2012 in Orlando in November. Additional information about IAAPA’s IP program is available at www.IAAPA.org/expos/eas/2012/exhibitor/documents/IAAPAIntellectualPropertyPolicyandProcedures.pdf
EAS Moves to Paris for 2013
Euro Attractions Show 2013 will take place 18 – 20 September at the Porte de Versailles Convention Center in Paris, France. More than 200 companies have already reserved in excess of 6.000 square meter of exhibit space. Additional information regarding EAS 2013 is available at www.IAAPA.org/EAS.
EAS Trade Fair Statements
Klaus-Peter Gust (SIK Holz)
“It was very important for us to meet the right decision-makers in the trade fair halls at the communications tower, and make them interested in the things we have to offer and to successfully build up a lasting business relationship. This goal was achieved. Of course, we wanted to meet operators of amusement parks at Europe’s largest amusement exhibition. It worked out really well for us. It totally exceeded our expectations. Better than Rome 2010 and stronger than London last year.
The visitors who were interested in our playground interior designs as a result of creative ideas and Robinia wood included mainly many holiday and leisure parks, as well as operators of indoor play areas. We estimate that two thirds of the visitors came from abroad. In the Arab world and in the Middle East business is booming. Here some new projects have already originated and others are cropping up.
For EAS Berlin 2012, we have selected a more conservative exhibition concept. About 15 year ago we were wandering about with Noah’s Ark. We were campaigning for the protection of resources, for social value culture and children’s rights. The stories relating to Noah and his ark are understood in all monotheistic cultures. Also, at www.rainbowproject.de, we are shown an emotionally forceful example which has been present for about a decade and a half.
EAS is generally still an exceptional place which is used for campaigning for eco-social sustainability. Unfortunately, all park operators, up to now, have tended to link sales turnover more with noise, jarring and fast food rather than with healthy and resource-friendly facilities. This is also reflected in the noise levels in the trade fair halls and all the content in the facilities offered by the exhibitors. In my opinion: Many things which you could and should do without...”
Julian Richter jun. (Richter Spielgeräte GmbH):
“We were very satisfied. Our stand was an oasis of calm in the midst of noisy machines and we hope that the visitors also see this.
We have established that the Operators are looking for possibilities to avoid long queues or to come up with alternative facilities for children. In addition, we can assume that children also need a break between the rollercoasters to regain strength for a second round. The visit from decision-makers from all over the world was very positive for us and we will continue to work on this market. Whether we will travel to Paris, I can’t say yet.“
Benjamin Eichinger (Eibe Produktion und Vertrieb GmbH & Co):
“The EAS trade fair took part this year in a particular environment in Berlin. Compared to the previous year, we recorded an increase in numbers to our stand and can confirm Mr. Mack’s statement, even if it was a bit quieter on the final day. We are satisfied with the number of visitors. There was a good mix of public visitors to the stand in respect of origin, and we also had many other interested parties visiting from outside Europe. It would have been desirable if there are been visitors from local authorities too, e.g. mayors, who were previously specifically target. As exhibitors, we were well informed in the run-up and we also feel well represented with the preceding advertisement and promotion for the trade fair. We would be delighted to attend again next year in Paris..
The only downside is the organisation and check-in service at the entrance resulting in long queues as the employees appeared to be swamped with the registration of guests and also the catering didn’t seem to satisfy any kind of apparent quality requirements.“
Mario Hampel (Kinderland Emsland Spielgeräte (Emsland Children’s Land Play Equipment)):
“EAS is a very successful trade fair. Many new contacts have come out of it with agreements of fixed dates. A trade fair which exceeded our expectations.
The following target groups were at our stand: Leisure parks, zoos of all sizes; architects, planners and dealers from different countries.
EAS offers a market for us, which we can use: Planning, concept development, production – a one-stop service.
We will be there next time in the EAS trade fair in Paris.”
Marika Vetter, (Kulturinsel Einsiedel):
“After three hours of travel, the EAS in Berlin had become for us a "home game" by Kulturinsel Einsiedel. This made it possible to present the three latest system developments in the original, apart from the widespread level of awareness as a unique specimen solver and try it out on the guests of the trade fair. "Jungformator" (young formator), "Puppenstube" (doll’s house) and "Baumbett" (tree bed) and the test persons passed the test. Even if the latter sometimes didn’t want to leave the bed anymore!
Our conclusion: A well-organised and extremely well visited trade fair. Even though we had to go to a lot of effort, it definitely paid off.”