After five energy-charged days, Ambiente closed its doors on February 14 with a lot of love to share from visitors and exhibitors alike. The show was attended 142,000 buyers from 154 countries (up from 135,988 from 142 countries in 2016), who flocked to Frankfurt for this pivotal consumer-goods fair, an increase of almost four percent.
Pictured above are: Partner Country set designer, Janice Kirkpatrick, OBE, UK Partner Country Ambassador, Elizabeth Hurley, Messe Frankfurt board member, Detlauf Braun
visitors viewed hundreds of thousands of new product launches from 4,454 exhibitors from 96 countries (compared with 4,386 from 95 countries who participated last year). Together they presented the latest product trends and innovations across gift, homewares, dining and other lifestyle products across 308,000 square metres in 27 exhibition halls.
Pictured right, Klang und Kleid greeting cards
“Ambiente is the international summit meeting of the consumer-goods industry”, said Detlef Braun, Member of the Executive Board of Messe Frankfurt. More than half of all visitors – 55 percent – came to Frankfurt from outside Germany. Moreover, the percentage of international exhibitors reached the record level of 80 percent.
“Also particularly impressive is the increase of almost four percent in the number of visitors, which was split equally between German and international visitors. At Ambiente, representatives of the trade from all over the world expand their networks of contacts and place orders”, adds Detlef Braun.
Top German and international decision makers were also better represented than in 2016, and this ensured good export business and a positive atmosphere in the halls. The top ten visitor nations after Germany were Italy, China, France, the USA, Spain, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Korea and Turkey.
Pictured above, mug design by Vicky Sawyer for Paper Products Design and right, banner for their Turnowsky Design licensed range
Over 3,000 visitors attended from the United Kingdom, this year’s Ambiente Partner Country, an increase of around 200 over last year. There was also above-average growth in the number of visitors from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Vietnam, as well as the USA, Canada, Australia, Russia, the United Arab Emirates and South American nations, such as Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina.
Pictured left, Wedgewood
Curated by British designer Janice Kirkpatrick (pictured top with Liz Hurley and Detlaf Braun), this year’s Partner Country presentation, ‘Providence & Provenance’, referenced the heritage of the industrial revolution. Additionally, there was a large variety of activities and events revolving around the United Kingdom on the Partner Country Day and all eyes were on beautiful British ambassador, Elizabeth Hurley (Pictured right viewing Portmeirion’s Sara Miller licensed range).
During a tour of several exhibition halls, the star of ‘The Royals’ television series took in the latest kitchenware and tableware design from the United Kingdom and Germany, paying visits to Waterford Wedgewood, Arthur Price, Portmeirion, Meissen, Dartington Crystal and more.
Pictured left, Dora Designs, which exhibited within the supported British Partner Country showcase
Rebecca Gough, International Services Manager, British Jewellery & Giftware International, British Allied Trades Federation, commented: “For our members, Ambiente is one of the most important events for positioning themselves in the German and international markets. As this year’s Partner Country, we benefited from the good PR work, which ranged from extensive marketing activities to the wonderful presentation at the fair by Janice Kirkpatrick. Together with the Department for International Trade, we were able to further optimise the impact. And our members appreciated this”.
Pictured right, Krea Funk
Parallel to the international upswing was a significant rise in the number of visitors from Germany: “Ambiente, the leading international consumer-goods trade fair, is also the number one for the German retail trade. Covering the dining, living, and giving sectors, Ambiente is the professional venue for numerous German retail outlets where they order large parts of their assortment. The trade had the opportunity to discover the main trends and order the latest products”, said Thomas Grothkopp, Director General of the German Home and Office Association (Bundesverband Wohnen und Büro e.V. – BWB).
Pictured left, Tregren Kitchen Gardens
These impressive figures were underscored by an unchanged high level of satisfaction revealed by the visitor poll: 95 percent said they were satisfied with the fair.
Dr Hermann Steinhauser, Managing Director of Dining exhibitor, Rösle, said: “Ambiente is the leading international trade fair for us. This year, the mood at the fair was good across the board, which was primarily due to the attractiveness of the fair. We always use Ambiente to compare ourselves with our competitors, from whom we want to distinguish ourselves.”
Pictured right, Portmeirion’s Ted Baker range
Timo Keersmaekers, CEO, Aertsnv (Salt & Pepper) was also enthusiastic about the show, commenting: “For us, Ambiente is the most important event for reaching German and international buyers. This year, Ambiente has once again further increased significantly in relevance, also in comparison to other fairs. For example, we met several buyers here who were not in Paris.”
Richard Van Roon, proprietor of Living exhibitor, Van Roon, said: “We returned to Ambiente after an absence of some years. The reason: we lost many of the customers we gained at Ambiente in all the years before. This year, we have been able to revive many old contacts, which is super. A start has been made and the course of business at Ambiente 2017 was very good for us.”
Pictured left, Wedgewood’s new Jasper Conran range
Representing the Giving sector, Liudger Böll, board member of Troika, explained: “Held early in the year, Ambiente is simply the best forum for global business. This year, as in the past, all international customers were there, as were our German customers, such as buyers from important department stores.”
The partner country of Ambiente 2018 was revealed to be The Netherlands, who will hold court from February 9 – 18 next year at Messe Frankfurt.