FESPA Eurasia, which took place for the first time in Istanbul, Turkey from October 3-5, 2013, set a new standard for wide format printing and signage events in Turkey. An international audience of almost 7000 - individual senior decision makers travelled to the launch event from more than 98 countries. Twenty-six percent of visitors travelled to FESPA Eurasia from outside Turkey, with the most significant visitor groups coming from Bulgaria, Iran, Greece, Russia, Pakistan and Ukraine. Notable visitor groups also attended from the UK and Germany.
FESPA Eurasia Exhibition Manager, Michael Ryan comments, "Our visitor statistics give a very clear picture of the high calibre of the visitor audience at FESPA Eurasia, which the FESPA brand is able to attract. There were 6,784 individual visitors at the event over three days, a figure which excludes exhibitor personnel and multiple visits, this made for busy stands and a lively launch event buzz. With many individuals also attending for more than one day, there was a lot of opportunity for the industry to exchange knowledge and discuss the latest innovations. For 73 percent of visitors their visit to FESPA Eurasia was their first time attending a FESPA exhibition, reinforcing our goal to reach new audiences, by taking the FESPA brand into developing markets."
He continues, "Our registration data revealed the audience to be investment ready - 68% of visitors were business owners or senior directors with overall purchasing responsibility. Indications are that the average budget for investment in wide format printing equipment or materials in the next 12 months for visitors to the show was 225,550 Euros (615,000 TL), with 44 percent of visitors planning to invest within six months. These are positive signals for FESPA, for Turkey, and for the wider Eurasia region."
The location of this regional show in Istanbul - with its cosmopolitan reputation, robust visitor infrastructure and strong regional transport links - made FESPA Eurasia 2013 an appealing destination event for printers from many key markets in Eurasia, enriching the knowledge exchange between visitors and exhibitors compared with a purely domestic event.
The dynamism of the region's textile and garment printing industry was reflected in the high level of interest in textile printing equipment and consumables, and the enthusiastic visitor response to the Garment Central workshops demonstrating garment decoration and screen printing.
Exhibitors affirmed FESPA Eurasia's role in setting a new benchmark for printing industry events in Turkey. "I've been in this business for 25 years. It's one of the best exhibitions [and] best performing exhibitions I've ever been to, as a visitor or as a participant", commented Fulya Kaplan, Sales Engineer at Fatih Tekstil.
Ekrem Iscimenler, Sign and Display Manager (Turkey, Greece and South Africa), HP, commented: "FESPA is an international organisation. Lots of visitors come to the show from all around the world. FESPA creates a connection between our customers and machine producers, and maximises the knowledge circulation between them, that's why FESPA is very important for HP."
Nurten Ergün, Company Director of Reggiani distributor BTC, agreed that FESPA is now the best show in the Turkish market, and was expecting to sell ten units of their flagship machine on display at the show.
"FESPA Eurasia was by far the best show I personally experienced in the region in recent years. As a launch event it was handled in a perfect way and FESPA's enthusiasm could be spotted all over the place." Marc Van Braekel, Regional Sales Manager/ GS Sales Direct Export, Agfa Graphics.
Jason Gunnlaugson, Account Manager for Knifeless Tech Systems, launching their Knifeless Tape product in Turkey for the first time commented: "When we heard that FESPA was coming to Turkey, we knew they were going to bring that professionalism and excitement for the industry so we jumped on board."
Stella Paschou, Sales Executive, Polyprint commented on the high level of visitor attendance at the Eurasia show, and emphasised the role of FESPA's global reach in supporting her company's growth. "It's a worldwide exhibition so it's easy to find new dealers, new customers and users. We've participated in every FESPA in Europe since  and we now have distributors in 53 countries."
Andrea Negretti, d.gen's Worldwide Business Manager commented: "The market is growing, quality expectations in Turkey are growing. It's an exciting market. I think this year Turkey is the best market in Europe and it's very good that FESPA have come here. People are looking for something new, something different, and FESPA is introducing a new style of doing shows."
Based on the strength of the participant responses to FESPA Eurasia 2013, FESPA has confirmed that the second edition of the event will take place at CNR Expo, Istanbul, Turkey from October 27-29, 2014. Visit www.fespaeurasia.com for more information.