Modern Tire Dealer

NOV 2018

Magazine for the professional tire industry

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M T D N o v e m b e r 2 0 1 8 80 E u r o p e a n N o t e b o o k A s I mentioned in the May issue of Modern Tire Dealer, tire shows in Europe have never been more aggres- sively competitive, a situation that has been almost entirely generated by an extremely progressive market- ing battle between Reifen Essen and e Tire Cologne in Cologne, both based in Germany. e first round of this epic "tire show" battle took place in Cologne at the end of May, and I was in attendance. e first Tire Cologne event proved to be successful, with a few growing pains. en almost exactly four months later at the end of September, a revamped Reifen Show (formerly Essen) was launched as part of the Automechanika Frankfurt Show 2018, which is regarded as one of the largest automotive trade shows in Europe and on a global basis. is year's event marked the 25th anniversary of the Auto- mechanika series in Frankfurt, and of course I had to be at the show to find out for myself whether the Reifen Show's gamble of teaming up with a leading international automotive trade event would be successful. e Automechanika show was definitely a resounding success as it broke several event records, including having the highest-ever number of visitors through its doors over the five days of the show (136,000 from 181 countries), as well as presenting more exhibition space than ever before — spanning 23 dedicated halls. Without a doubt it turned out to be the most popular Auto- mechanika show ever staged in Germany, which unfortunately is more than I can say for the Reifen Show, which proved to be disappointing. In fact, although marketed throughout Europe as "two shows in one" that would bring together tires with the automotive sector at one event, the Reifen Show consisted of one hall (12), and even this was just the upper floor of the hall. I visited the booths and spoke with a great deal of tire com- panies, including Continental AG, Al Dobowi Group (Dubai), Linglong Tire (China), Maxion Wheels (North America) Giti Tire (Singapore) and Pirelli, who all expressed significant disap- pointment that the Reifen Show had dramatically diminished from a large and popular tire show in Essen, Germany, to just one hall in Frankfurt. On a more positive note, the hall did attract a steady daily flow of interested visitors, and most of the companies I talked with admitted that although they had primarily exhibited to gauge the impact of this new show (within a show) and its effectiveness for the future, they had attracted potential new sales interest. It was also interesting to note quite a few companies special- izing in tire retreading and recycling were exhibiting, including Matteuzzi, Cima Impianti, Elgi Rubber, Reinheimer, Sun Rubber, Italmatic and Salvadori. However, they were of the same opinion that being just in one hall was ineffective. I have to say that all the other 22 halls were busy and buzzing most of the time, and as one exhibitor clearly stated, "Staging a single hall event within a very busy show that is primarily for the automotive sector has only made the presence of the Tire Cologne Show even stronger in Europe," and I have to agree with this statement. Perhaps the original intention was to take up space in more than one hall but the interest from potential exhibitors just wasn't there. Maybe, like many shows that re-organize their concepts, some tire companies preferred to "sit on the fence" for this initial show and see how successful it would be. What I can say for sure is that the general opinion of the exhibitors I spoke with was that attending the new Reifen Show was not new and improved. ■ John Stone has been working within the global tire industry for the last 27 years. In 2004 he launched his own consulting company, Sapphire Media Service, which caters to business media clients around the globe. Stone also writes for tire and automotive-related publications in Europe, South Africa and Asia. A disappointing Reifen Show adds to trade show drama in Europe John Stone By The Reifen Show at Automechanika Frankfurt 2018 was held in only one hall. Only time will tell if this show can grow. MAYBE SOME TIRE COMPANIES PREFERRED TO 'SIT ON THE FENCE' FOR THIS INITIAL SHOW AND SEE HOW SUCCESSFUL IT WOULD BE. COURTESY OF JOHN STONE

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