“Although we had extra personnel on our exhibition stand, visitors still had to queue on occasions. For us, the fair was fantastic,” said Dr. Jan Zimmermann of Techtextil exhibitor Forster Rohner from Switzerland. Many of the 1,789 exhibitors of Techtextil and Texprocess had similar experiences. Over 47,500 visitors (an increase of around 14% as compared with 41,826 in 2015) from 114 countries made their way to the Frankfurt Fair and Exhibition Centre from May 9th to 12th, to discover the most innovative products in the field of technical textiles and the latest processing technologies.
On all four days, the situation was similar at Techtextil with trade visitors jamming the exhibition halls in search of high‑tech textiles for use in applications such as folding textile headlights, smart knee bandages, warming or cooling fashions, not to mention garments with integrated LEDs, fire-resistant fibers, bicycle frames made of carbon and textile membranes for stadium roofs.
After Germany, the three main visitor nations at Techtextil were Italy, France and Turkey. At Texprocess, they were Italy, Rumania and Portugal. Particularly striking this year was that a very large number of young professionals attended the fairs – another indication of the positive and dynamic mood in the textile sector, which is clearly on course for growth.
The very good mood at the fairs was underscored by the visitor poll on the economic climate in the sector. According to 33% of the Texprocess visitors (2015: 26%), the current economic situation can be described as good. In the case of Techtextil visitors, the figure was even higher with 42% holding this opinion (2015: 32%). It must be added to these figures the outstanding ratings given to the two events. Thus, 96% of the Techtextil visitors said they were very pleased with the results of their visit to the fair. In the case of Texprocess visitors, the figure was even higher at 97%.
Also very well received were the numerous special exhibitions and events, which offered insights into the whole textile value chain and highlighted the synergistic effects between the two fairs. Opened by ESA astronaut Dr. Reinhold Ewald, the space travel-oriented exhibition, ‘Living in Space’ attracted numerous visitors with features such as a virtual-reality journey to Mars, materials for use in space and a ‘Space Habitat’ designed by star architect Ben van Berkel. There was thunderous applause for the ‘Innovative Apparel Show’, which drew packed crowds to the foyer of Halls 5.1/6.1 with a display of high-tech textiles live on the catwalk several times throughout the fair. Showing a complete textile production line in operation, the ‘Digital Textile Micro Factory’ was praised as having been a complete success.
The next Techtextil and Texprocess will be held from May 14th to 17th, 2019.