The first domino fell in late June, when Austria’s Wittmann Group announced that it would not participate at Fakuma 2020 this year in Friedrichshafen, Germany. Yesterday, Germany’s KraussMaffei followed suit, saying that it would “opt against the familiar and usual active participation in Fakuma 2020 trade fair — should the event take place.” Those two machinery makers traditionally occupy a significant amount of floor space at the event. The question now is, which other major exhibitors will forgo the show? And will the show itself fall victim to COVID-19?
In making the announcement, KraussMaffei noted that Fakuma is one of the most important platforms for showcasing its new products and expertise and for networking with existing and prospective customers. Nevertheless, the company felt that even under strict safety measures it could find no “viable” way to offer its customers and personnel a “satisfactory” trade show experience. “Unfortunately, the risk of infection, present for all attendees including our employees, could not be eliminated,” said the press release.
For their part, Messe Friedrichshafen and show organizer P. E. Schall GmbH & Co. KG are currently working in close cooperation with authorities to develop a plan that will ensure the safety of all participants, according to a press release posted on the Fakuma website. “With the declaration of intent issued by the state government of Baden-Württemberg on 23 June 2020, which states that trade fairs with more than 1000 participating persons will once again be permitted as of the 1st of September, trade fair promoters P. E. Schall GmbH & Co. KG and their project team organising Fakuma 2020 will switch from the compulsory waiting mode to the aggressive implementation mode,” said the press release published on June 29.
Schall said that its goal is to give exhibitors and partners a final go-ahead for Fakuma 2020 no later than the end of this month. The event is scheduled for Oct. 13 to 17. Stay tuned!