Total of 88,183 trade visitors at AMB 2012 – More exhibitors and visitors from abroad – AMB consolidates its place among the world’s top 5 events

“That was the best AMB ever”, enthused Ulrich Kromer, Managing Director of Messe Stuttgart. This view was also shared by the exhibitors at AMB, International Exhibition for Metal Working, which closed its doors today after five days at the Stuttgart Trade Fair Centre. A total of 88,183 visitors (2010: 86,202) came to Stuttgart; 12 per cent (2010: 11 per cent) of them were from abroad. 17 per cent of foreign trade visitors came from Switzerland, 11 per cent from Austria, 7 per cent from France, 6 per cent from Italy and 5 per cent from Japan. The length of stay at the exhibition remained constant at 1.2 days.

“With this result, AMB underlined and further strengthened its importance as one of the world’s five most important industry exhibitions”, concluded Kromer. The 1,344 exhibitors (according to the FKM Standard; 2010: 1,346) again presented a large number of new products and further developments, including some genuine world innovations. All nine exhibition halls and additional areas at the East Entrance were completely booked up, i.e. a total of 108,000 square metres (gross) of exhibition space were occupied.

The economic situation is still positive while demand is stable and continuing at a high level. In spite of a slight economic slowdown, the order situation in the industry is also very good. This applies, in particular, to manufacturers of precision tools. This positive mood could clearly be felt at AMB 2012. “As Chairman of the VDMA Precision Tools Association, I am delighted that the tool halls were very well-attended from the first to the last day of the exhibition. This is conclusive proof of the importance of AMB and also shows how vital precision tools are in relation to productivity, quality and sustainability“, commented Lothar Horn, Managing Director of Paul Horn GmbH, on the outcome of AMB. Dr. Wilfried Schäfer, Managing Director of the Association of German Machine Tool Manufacturers (VDW), also concurred with this opinion in the name of his members: “The companies are very satisfied with the outcome of the exhibition. Since the discussions with customers showed that there is a need for further investment, our industry can also look forward to good demand in the next few months.”

The expertise of visitors was unanimously rated as very high. 76 per cent of all employed visitors at the exhibition actually said that they are solely responsible or partially responsible for purchasing and procurement decisions in their company, or that they acted in an advisory capacity regarding these decisions. Three quarters of visitors came from industry, 11 per cent from craft trades, 6 per cent from service companies, 4 per cent from commerce and the rest from consulting firms, universities, technical colleges,vocational schools and other sectors (multiple nominations possible). The majority of visitors came from the mechanical engineering industry (34 per cent), followed by the metal working and processing industry (21 per cent), the automotive/vehicle manufacturing industry (16 per cent), tool construction and mouldmaking (13 per cent), as well as metal construction enterprises, components suppliers, the iron, steel and metal goods industry, precision mechanics/optics, the electrical engineering/electronics industry, medical technology and other industries. The dominant industries among visitors corresponded exactly to the desired visitor target groups of exhibitors who were extremely satisfied with the potential customers on their stands. There was a relatively even picture regarding the size of the company from which visitors came: around one third of visitors came from companies with up to 49 employees, one third from companies with between 50 and 499 employees, and one third from companies with more than 500 employees.

Three quarters of respondents were definitely or perhaps planning to make investments. 59 per cent of respondents said that they would be investing immediately or in the next six months. 31 per cent were planning to make investments over the course of twelve months after the end of the exhibition. 44 per cent of people prepared to make investments were intending to spend up to €100,000. 36 per cent said that they would spend between €100,000 and €500,000. 9 per cent were prepared to spend up to €1 million. 12 per cent of people planning new purchases were intending to invest a sum in excess of €1 million. Visitors were primarily interested in milling machines, followed by lathes/automatic lathes, grinding machines and tool grinding machines, drilling machines, sawing and cutting-off grinding machines, flexible manufacturing cells and systems, and metal-removing machine tools. The interests of visitors coincided exactly with the machines and services presented by exhibitors, i.e. an ideal scenario for an exhibition. 91 per cent of visitors therefore rated AMB as “good” to “very good”. There was a further rise among visitors’ intention to come back to the exhibition: 96 per cent of visitors were certain or were already thinking about attending the next AMB. More than one third of all visitors (36 per cent) said that they attended no other industry exhibitions. Anyone wanting to reach this visitor group can only do so at AMB.

The accompanying programme of AMB 2012 focused on the trend topics of energy efficiency and sustainability. Visitors expressed keen interest in the topic of sustainability. It was the focal point of the “Blue Competence“ Initiative of the Association of German Machine Tool Manufacturers (VDW), other associations in the German Engineering Federation (VDMA) and other organisations in the mechanical engineering and plant construction industry. The guided visitor tours organised by the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of the Environment, Climate Protection and the Energy Sector also went down very well. During these guided tours interested visitors discovered how to handle cooling lubricants in an eco-friendly manner and look at the topic of energy efficiency in metal working from a practical standpoint. A large number of visitors took part in the “Metal Working Innovation Tour – Trends of Tomorrow”, which was organised by the Institute of Production Management, Technology and Communication Manager: Silvia Stoll | Tel.: +49 (0)711 18560-2696 | Fax -2460 | silvia.stoll@messe-stuttgart.de

Machine Tools (PTW) at Darmstadt Technical University. The special show “Changing Technology” featuring historical machine tools and tools, as well as impressive company histories went down very well straightaway.