Despite tougher times for business, the organisers of the watch, clock and jewellery fair, Inhorgenta Europe 2004 (20 – 23 February), are expecting visitor and exhibitor numbers to remain high. At a recent forum at the Munich exhibition centre, attended by leading representatives from the sector, the organisers said that although a few watch manufacturers had cancelled, the figures for 2004 were likely to match those of the last event, at around 1,200 exhibitors from 40 countries, thanks to the high level of registrations in the jewellery section for next year.
“Our efforts to attract more international trade visitors to Munich are now also bearing fruit,” said Exhibition Director Armin Wittmann. Around 30,000 trade visitors from all over the world are expected at the Fair next year, including many leading European jewellers, to which the Munich trade fair organ-isation is offering a special service, in the form of an 'international buyers programme'. “In 2004 Inhorgenta Europe will once again show itself to be the biggest trade fair for watches, clocks, jewellery, pearls, precious stones and technology within the European Union,” promised Wittmann.
For the big players in the watch, clock and jewellery sector – from Japan, the US or Europe – Munich is one of the key venues in the global trade fair calendar. Jochen Exner, Managing Director of the jewellery producers Gebrüder Niessing GmbH, Vreden, had high praise: “What has been built up here in recent years, particularly in the field of designer jewellery, is unmatched anywhere else in the world.” Similar comments came from Werner Thieme of Fossil (Europe) GmbH, whose brand portfolio includes Fossil as well as other licensed brands such as Emporio Armani, DKNY, Diesel and Zodiac: “Having the Fair earlier in the year means we have the opportunity to engender a mood of optimism and anticipation among jewellers and watch and clock retailers.” Thieme announced that his company would be launching the new Burberry watch collection at Inhorgenta Europe next year.
Spokespersons for Citizen and Junghans also confirmed that preparations for their compa-nies´ participation in the fair in 2004 were already well under way. “We have aligned our cycle of product development, which in general takes two to three years, to fit in with Inhorgenta Europe. In 2004 we will be presenting a whole host of new products at the Fair,” revealed the Managing Director of Junghans, Harald Hepperle.
Although the consumers themselves are keeping their spending in check, there will be a veritable firework display of new watches, jewellery designs, diamond necklaces, pearls and precious stones in February in Munich. The organisers of the Fair have announced their intention to bring the manufacturers and new products more to the attention of the consumers, through targeted communication measures. “We want to capture people´s imagination even more for the glitter and the beauty on display each year at Inhorgenta Europe. And thus bring the whole subject of watches, clocks and jewellery more into the public eye,” affirmed Wittmann.
For further information and photo material, go to: www.inhorgenta.com