On Saturday (29 February), the giant German exhibition space issued a statement saying that upcoming shows ProWein, Wire, Tube, Beauty, Top Hair and Energy Storage Europe would be postponed due to the significant increase in infected persons, and uncertainty around travel for international exhibitors and attendees.
“In doing so, Messe Düsseldorf is following the recommendation of the crisis management team of the German government to take into account the principles of the Robert Koch Institute when making a risk assessment of major events,” the Messe stated.
Chief executive Werner Dornscheidt said: “Our customers, partners and employees trust us. Not only when it comes to the professional and successful handling of major international events in Düsseldorf. They can also have this trust in us when we make decisions about critical situations in the interests of their safety.”
The Messe stated: “There are currently no intentions to postpone the major trade fairs Interpack and Drupa, which will be held in Düsseldorf in May and June.”
“Of course, we are taking our customers' inquiries regarding the coronavirus very seriously here too," Dornscheidt added. “We will re-evaluate the situation in good time in consultation with health authorities and partners in order to make the appropriate decisions.”
Interpack takes place from 7-13 May while Drupa 2020 is being held later in the year than usual, from 16-26 June, due to the Messe's decision to stick with a four-year cycle rather than reduce it to three.
Separately, the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on the upcoming Fespa Global Print Expo in Madrid is not yet clear.
Over the weekend US screen printing specialist M&R announced it was pulling out of the show because of the spreading coronavirus outbreak. CEO Danny Sweem posted a video on YouTube explaining the firm’s decision.
“M&R is making the tough decision not to participate in the Fespa show in Madrid,” he said. “It’s with disappointment that we’re going to pull back and not participate at the Fespa show this year. We hope you all understand this and respect our decision.”
M&R had booked a large stand in hall 1 near the Fespa entrance.