As everyone will remember, the 2003 edition of the newly re-branded BaselWorld show was one of the most difficult events of the last decade. There were many reasons: the morose economic situation, the start of the war in Iraq, and to top it off, the SARS epidemic.
One of the direct consequences of the SARS issue is the return of the Hong Kong exhibitors to Basel. Exit Zurich! Arrangements have been made for a new Hall that is not far from the regular Fair buildings, and it will be luxuriously planned and organized.
To learn more about this new arrangement, we spoke to René Kamm, organizer of BaselWorld. To all our questions, he gave transparent and detailed answers in the interview that appears on the following pages.
As for now, or for at least the next six years to come, the cards are definitively distributed between BaselWorld on the one hand and the SIHH on the other. Yet, the two shows are completely different. Geneva remains a large and luxurious private exhibition while BaselWorld continues as the undeniably largest watch trade fair in the world, far above all the other watch shows.
It has been some road that this Fair has travelled over the years! Many of you might still remember the stands that watchmakers had to share with merchants of wine and miscellaneous household articles. Today, BaselWorld is a comprehensive event, offering watchmakers from around the globe, irrespective of their professional status, a choice opportunity and complete services in a setting whose luxury and spectacular appearance impress all who visit it for the first time.
Baselworld is not only a formidable 'working tool' of planetary dimensions, it is also a convivial meeting place. It is fortunate that such an exhibition takes place in the heart of a city and not simply in the 'ghetto' of a luxurious hotel or in a semi-industrial warehouse, as is often the case.
To add to this experience, Basel is one of the most beautiful cities of Europe offering participants and visitors a multitude of inviting places where people can meet informally. It is also by this very human aspect that we can measure the quality of the 'contacts' that are formed here.
Europa Star will participate in this year's show at Basel for the 65th time and we are very happy to welcome you as well, Hall 1.1 / A17. See you there!