Over the six days of the Bau 2011 trade fair, approximately 238 000 visitors streamed into the New Munich Trade Fair Centre – that’s around 12% more than at the last event in 2009. Never before in the 50-year history of Bau has the event seen such a steep rise. Almost 60 000 visitors came from outside Germany. This boosted the proportion of foreign visitors from 18% to 25%. With 52 000 trade visitors, the planners and architects made up 22% of the visitors. The visitors travelled to Munich from over 150 different countries. From almost all the countries there was a significant increase in the number of visitors. After Germany, the countries from which most trade visitors came were Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Turkey, the Czech Republic, Poland, Russia, Slovenia, France and Great Britain. Particularly noticeable was the strong rise in numbers from countries like India, Japan, the US, Canada and the United Arab Emirates. In some cases here the numbers doubled.
2 058 exhibitors from 46 countries showcased their products and solutions on 180 000 m² of exhibition space in the halls. With the outlook for business picking up again in the building industry, most exhibitors came to this Bau in an optimistic mood, but they were nevertheless quite amazed at the overwhelming interest and at the leap in the number of visitors from abroad.
Top marks from visitors and exhibitors
The positive comments were also echoed by the findings of a survey conducted at the event by opinion pollsters TNS Infratest. According to this survey, 96% of the visitors to Bau found the event ‘excellent to good’, and 97% said they would come back again. The highest ratings were given to the factors of ‘breadth and depth of the ranges on display’, and ‘the presence of market leaders’. 93% of the visitors agree that Bau is the leading trade fair for the sector. Another finding to emerge from the survey is that those who came to Bau with an intention to make specific investments were then also able to achieve that goal at this business platform. Also almost all the visitors declared that they had been successful in finding out information in preparation for new investments or in paving the way for new business relations. The individual sections of the exhibition were all rated by at least 90% of the visitors as ‘excellent to good’. The only criticism was regarding the set-up on the outdoor exhibition space. The accompanying programme, above all the forums and the special shows, on the other hand, received top marks from the visitors. Trade visitors made up 96% of the total number of visitors. Another finding to emerge from the survey is that the mood in the building sector has much improved. In 2009 only about half of those surveyed thought the economic situation was ‘excellent to good’, but now 82% are looking optimistically into the future.
Almost all of the exhibitors (97%) rated the fair as ‘excellent to good’, and stated they intended to take part again in 2013. 95% of the exhibitors gave top marks to the quality of the visitors, while 85% (considerably higher than two years ago) praised the internationality of the visitors. As on the visitor side, the exhibitors, too, were significantly more optimistic this time than last time about the economic situation in the sector. 85% of them were hopeful about the future.
Extensive accompanying programme attracted many visitors
The top themes at Bau this year were sustainable building and building for life. On both themes there were several special shows and many lectures in the forums and congresses. The three forums at Bau attracted enormous interest: “Future of Building Forum”, “MacroArchitecture” and “Intelligent Building”. Bau was the platform for many award presentations, among them renowned architectural awards. Bau 2011 also marked the official launch of the ArchiWorld Academy – a new competition being organized by Bau in cooperation with the online portal Archi-Europe.
Crowd puller: “Long Night of Architecture”
This event held for the first time in conjunction with Bau was open to all participants at Bau and also to interested citizens of the city. Over 30 buildings in and around the city of Munich opened their doors on Friday evening for people to come in and look around. Attendance was good throughout.
The next Bau will take place from 14 to 19 January 2013.