Figures, comments and plans for the future. A first redemption of the new industrial printing chain fair.
Full success for the first edition of Print4All, the new B2B fair format born out of the partnership between Acimga, Argi and Fiera Milano, which from May 28 to June 1 fielded the entire converting, package printing, labeling, commercial and industrial printing supply chain. Not only due to the figures, exceeding the best expectations, but also due to the climate and the prospects, and for the universal appreciation expressed in combining Print4All with the other events of the Innovation Alliance.
First of all attention should be drawn to the 31 thousand individual visits, a number destined to grow further, following the processing of official data that will also include direct entries from the concurrent Innovation Alliance events. For Print4All this result translates into a ratio of 2.2 visitors per square metre: an extraordinary ratio for instrumental mechanics (where the “golden rule” is 1/1), which immediately and rightfully places the fair in the Olympus of international exhibitions.
As for the quality of the relations at the fair, we registered an interested visiting public from the first day to the last, with the companies represented at the highest levels; many company owners and CEOs being present at the stands and fully committed there (something rare, almost long forgotten); heat-of-the moment comments showed full and unanimous satisfaction. And also surprise, for a turnaround that was in the air – fueled by the preparatory events and by the powerful communication drive leading up to the event – but that in itself did not allow expectation of results on such a scale, quality to be taken for granted.
«We have reached the goal of creating a platform of technological excellence for the entire printing chain», comments Aldo Peretti, president of Acimga. «Alongside our partners we showed ourselves headstrong in wanting to valorize our trade fair traditions, allowing them evolve into a new format and doing our utmost to combat excessive caution and difficulty. And the facts proved us right. We have brought home a result which Italian entrepreneurs can rightly be proud of and that has earned us admiration abroad. And – adds Peretti – we know we can do even better: Right from this debut Print4All has proven itself mature for a totally one storey exhibition without structural constraints that limit exhibitive capacities and visitor flow (this year’s show was held over two floor levels, Ed.). We know the direction we need to take to grow even more, the fair that has just ended allows us to glean precious information enabling us to immediately commence and plan the next Print4All 2021, which will be held after drupa 2020, with even higher objectives.»
A few extra details
At Print4All foreign visitors made up 21% of the total, being mainly from Germany, Spain, Russia, Switzerland, Turkey, France. These are strategic printing and converting technology outlet markets, which Acimga export forecasts for the four-year period 2018-2021 place among the top 20. We could not help but note how the exhibitors at Print4All – 429 companies that occupied halls 18 and 20 of Fiera Milano Rho – featured a keenness to participate at the fair, with the presentation of state-of-the-art technology and some significant “launches”. The intense networking, the numerous contracts signed at the stands and a lively exchange of information made the event an opportunity for professional updating. All this with the aid of the conferences implemented by the organizers and institutions that chose Print4All as the venue for their annual meetings.
Among the special initiatives, one cannot fail to mention PrintMat – the show within the show to explore the latest inter-disciplinary and inter-technical print frontiers, the educational paths dedicated to professional school students and the various types of “lean” and specialized seminars, attended by thousands of people.
The Innovation Alliance, opportunity multiplier
Finally, a mention of the context: the new format, conceived and developed in partnership with Fiera Milano, Acimga, Argi and the trade associations, saw five coherent and complementary instrumental mechanics shows – Ipack-Ima, Meat-Tech, Plast, Print4All and Intralogistica Italia – being held together for the first time. Overall this “meta-fair” registered 150,110 total admissions, including 105,770 buyers from the various sectors. Themes associated with technologies inspired by the paradigm of Industry 4.0, robots and advanced automation, augmented reality and production under digital management systems featured among the hot topics, but the event also turned the spotlight on sustainability, product and process safety as well as the importance of training. In fact, alongside system innovation, the need emerged for trained professional figures: digitalisation requires new, qualified personnel.