Hamburg Messe and Congress continues to grow in 2011

19th Jan 2012
Hamburg Messe and Congress continues to grow in 2011

Hamburg Messe und Congress GmbH (HMC) completed business year 2011 with success, increasing its revenues as planned to EUR 58.5 million (provisional full-year calculation) versus reference year 2009, up 7.5% (versus EUR 54.4 million in 2009). That is systematic continuation of the growth by Hamburg Messe und Congress which has been proceeding since 2005. The company expects a new revenue record in 2012.

This performance is also highly satisfactory for Frank Horch, President of the Hamburg Ministry of Economics, Transport and Innovation, who says “As the Senator responsible for this area, I am very pleased that HMC has succeeded in realising its growth plans again in 2011, showing that it is on the right track. Now it has to continue along this path and develop it still further.”

“We have set the right course with our focus on high-quality guest events, expansion of our strong self-managed events, and further development of highly specialised trade fairs and exhibitions,” says Bernd Aufderheide, President and CEO of HMC. “We are delighted that we were able to follow up our successful development again in the odd-numbered year 2011. It shows that our strategy is right.”

In total, HMC rented out gross exhibition space of 812,351 square metres in 2011, for a total of 44 exhibitions and events (including one at Neustadt harbour). The ten HMC events and 34 guest events attracted a total of 10,447 exhibitors and 670,667 visitors. Further 335,758 visitors attended CCH – Congress Center Hamburg for 270 national and international meetings and conferences, and cultural and culinary events.

At EUR 2.3 million, HMC delivered the best ever operating result in an odd-numbered exhibition year (odd-numbered years regularly have fewer events). The good results are somewhat reduced by follow-up costs of infrastructure projects. That results in a planned deficit of EUR 27.5 million in 2011, mainly due to real estate leasing and financing costs and write-downs.


“We are very satisfied with the result. We succeeded in fulfilling our business plan again in 2011, on the way to a balanced result in 2016,” said Bernd Aufderheide in summary.

Retrospect 2011

Developing strong HMC events

Internorga, the Leading Trade Show for Catering and Food Service, was able to build its success still further in 2011. Demand was so great in the confectionery and bakery sector that a new lightweight hall was built on the site to provide additional exhibition space. Another example of the successful further development of an exhibition is hanseboot, the international boat show, which will in future be increasingly present at other watersports events during the year. They include the hanseboot ancora boat show, the hanseboot event area at Warnemünde Week, and many other events in the watersports sector.

Great popularity with guest exhibitors

HMC continues to be very popular with guest exhibitors. Such as EU PVSEC, one of the most important events in the photovoltaic sector, with more than 40,000 trade visitors and exhibition space of 80,000 square metres, which was held in Hamburg for the second time following the kick-off event in 2009 – a welcome addition to Hamburg’s portfolio as the European Green Capital 2011. The media cluster featured events such as FESPA Digital, the printing and media industry fair, which was held in Hamburg for the first time in 2011, and attracted more visitors than any previous FESPA Digital event.

Support for the Hamburg business clusters

HMC fairs and events also provided valuable support to the major business clusters designated by the City of Hamburg. For example, HMC hosted Seatrade Europe Hamburg in 2011, a dedicated European cruise fair which reinforces the City’s commitment to this industry. Other exhibitions which reinforced Hamburg’s position as European Green Capital 2011 were goodgoods, the sustainable consumer goods fair; and H2Expo, International Conference and Exhibition on Hydrogen, Fuel Cells and Electric Drives.

Strong international presence of HMC

The focus on Hamburg’s industry clusters was also an important element internationally. The spin-offs of SMM, shipbuilding, machinery, marine technology international trade fair, in Istanbul, Turkey and Mumbai, India, established themselves more strongly in the international markets. HMC achieved sales of EUR 6.1 million with its 16 joint stands at events abroad. These included joint stands organised on behalf of the German Federal Government at Kormarine, Korea, and Marintec, Shanghai, and HMC also succeeded in winning back the Arab Health exhibition and medical congress, Dubai.

CCH focuses on major specialist events

CCH – Congress Center Hamburg generated revenues of EUR 9 million in 2011. The main sources of these revenues, as usual, were large medical conferences and Annual General Meetings of stock exchange listed companies. HMC is increasingly focusing on major specialist events and conferences with accompanying exhibitions; smaller events with up to 500 participants were channelled to the local market via the Hamburg Convention Bureau. Pleasingly, CCH again took first position among conference centres nationwide in the Location Study by HV-Magazin, a magazine specialising in AGMs.

Outlook for 2012

Further strengthening of events

Particularly the large international trade fairs at HMC continue to gain in importance. Internorga was fully booked as early as November 2011. To meet demand for exhibition space at Internorga in future, capacity will be increased by addition of the 7,000 square metre exhibition hall at CCH from 2013 onwards. This additional space is also to be used for SMM from 2014 onwards. From 2012 onwards, this leading maritime industry fair will comprise four focal areas – maritime environmental and climate protection; maritime security; offshore; and financing of shipbuilding and shipping. MS&D, international conference on maritime security and defence hamburg, will be integrated in SMM, complementing the maritime security area.

Important guest events will again be held at the Hamburg Fair site in 2012. The new trade fair transfairlog, Trade Fair for International Transport and Logistics Management, will be held for the first time. The World Travel Catering and Onboard Services Expo will be held concurrently with Aircraft Interiors Expo. Another special highlight at the Hamburg Fair site in 2012 will be Endurance 12 – Marathon Hamburg Sport Fair. In 2013 HMC will be involved in hosting the German Protestant Kirchentag (Church Convention) and the Lions International Convention.

New event in the HMC portfolio

HMC will launch a new event in Hamburg in 2014 – WindEnergy Hamburg, the international wind energy conference, to be held in Hamburg for the first time in September 2014. WindEnergy Hamburg will cover the whole value chain of the wind industry – for the onshore sector and the growing offshore sector. This event was created at the request of the industry, in keeping with Hamburg’s growing importance as the capital of the European wind industry.

Continued strong international presence

A highlight in events abroad is Expo 2012 Yeosu Korea, from 12 May to 12 August 2012, where HMC is organising and managing the German Pavilion with the name “Seavolution”, under contract with the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology. The key theme there is “The living ocean and coast – diversity of resources and sustainable activities”, with the three focal areas of Coast, Habitat and Resources. HMC will also organise other German pavilions at events such as SIAL (the Global Food Marketplace, Paris) and Arab Health (Dubai) in 2012.

The positive trend at CCH continues, especially in conferences and meetings, with 35 large conferences (group size more than 1,500 participants) already firmly booked in the period up to 2016. Examples of these events in 2012 are the 10th German Senior Citizens’ Convention and the 101st German Librarians’ Convention.

HMC expects revenues of EUR 94.8 million in 2012. Even after adjusting for the special effect (EUR 14.5 million) for running the German Pavilion at Expo 2012 Yeosu, that leaves EUR 80.3 million, the highest sales volume in the history of Hamburg Messe und Congress GmbH. That corresponds to growth of 5.6% versus reference year 2010 (EUR 76.1 million).


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