Paperworld 2013 concluded on a successful note. The exhibition, which was held in Frankfurt, Germany, is one of the largest specialized exhibitions for the paper and stationary industry. The event took place from 26 to 29 January 2013 along with ‘Christmas World’ and ‘Creative World’ exhibitions. Organizers Messe Frankfurt announced that about 2,967 exhibitors from 66 countries and around 83,206 visitors from 145 countries participated at Paperworld 2013.
ME Printer was invited by Messe Frankfurt to attend this year’s activities. It was a chance for us to meet major players in the industry as well as to know about the latest trends in the paper, stationery and office supplies industry.
Paperworld reflects the performance of the global paper and stationery industry, and acts as a forecasting tool that helps you to see the road that the industry is heading in the coming years.
Detlef Braun, Member of the Executive Board of Messe Frankfurt expressed his joy on the success of Paperworld by saying, “We are very pleased with the results of these three events, especially when the economic condition in the world is not so favourable.” He added, “This year though the number was down, the visitor standards was very high. Above all, the increased number of visitors from outside Europe underscored the international significance of the fair. The event offered exhibitors new opportunities in the export field.”
The success of Paperworld this year re-strengthened its position as an international platform for communication to exhibitors and visitors alike. The number of visitors from outside Germany accounted to 28,231, which is about 62% of the total number of visitors. Braun continued, “We are happy that the proportion of European visitors came up to last year’s level, and this shows that trade fairs are still the most important platforms for meeting international contacts and creating new impulses.”
Many other events were held along with Paperworld, such as the Paperworld Trend show, which was held in Hall 6.1. It reviewed the latest trends in different product categories, new ideas and different designs in paper and stationery. Trade visitors, office suppliers and paper and stationery suppliers were able to identify the most prominent trends for the next season and shared their viewpoint about the upcoming trends in colours, designs, consumables and other topics based on the industry.
Meanwhile, Paperworld Forum was held in Hall 3.0, which hosted a series of lectures that covered a wide range of topics in marketing and on issues, such as sustainability and about new distribution channels in digital marketing. The ISPA award for the best product of the year along with several other awards in the areas of quality, price, presentation and environmental protection was distributed during the program.
participation from middle east
The most important players at the exhibition were from Europe, the Americas and East Asian countries. The presence of Middle East was clearly visible. Freezing weather and temperatures reaching -5 degree Celsius didn’t keep back exhibitors and visitors from Middle East from attending the show.
Though Paperworld organizes a smaller edition of its show in the Middle East (which is held in Dubai every year), participants from this region were seen everywhere. Visitors and exhibitors from UAE, Egypt, Algeria, Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Tunisia were present at the show. ME Printer met a number of exhibitors and visitors in order to identify their reaction towards Paperworld.
Broad prospects for Business
Hussein International Paper Company from Egypt expressed its keenness to participate in Paperworld Frankfurt as well as Paperworld Middle East. Mansoor Ezzi, Managing Director of the company explained the importance of the show, “It’s very important for us to participate in Paperworld Frankfurt, especially when trade conditions in Egypt are not so favourable. Paperworld is an important exhibition at the global level and has the advantage of attracting visitors from various countries around the world.”
Mansoor said, “This year’s event was highly successful for us. We were able to close several deals and the show gave us opportunity to connect with a number of new customers. It is very important to be present in Paperworld and we are always keen to participate.”
He added, “Our participation this year earned us the confidence of our customers, and we were able to convey our reliability as a long term partner to them. We were also able to meet and discuss business with various clients from Africa, GCC and Europe. The company also has plans to participate in Paperworld Middle East.”
Talking about market performance in Egypt, post-revolution, Mansoor said, “It will take time for a revolution hit country to be back on track. The situation in Egypt is far better than what other countries like Libya and Syria had to go through.” Mansoor was optimistic about the situation in Egypt, “We are confident that the situation in Egypt will improve for the better, and the market has the ability to be as strong as it was before.”
The company Asia Pulp and Paper had a strong participation at Paperworld. APP reviewed the latest products in the paper industry, with special focus on stationery sector, while they also focused on meeting end users.
The Market Speaks for Itself
Ihab Ghali, Export Customer Service and Logistics Manager from El Nagy factory for Stationary Products also participated in Paperworld. He confirmed the company’s eagerness to participate in the exhibition for another two decades. “We are participating constantly in Paperworld since 1995, and our primary focus is to target export markets, and open channels with new markets in addition to strengthening relationship with existing customers. It is also the best time to meet all clients and suppliers as well as to seal several deals.”
Speaking about the company’s customers, Ihab said, “We export our products to countries such as America, Africa, Ethiopia, the Middle East and Latin America. We have a full range of stationary products that meet the various needs of the market there. We have plans for further expansion and will take into account our customers’ needs in terms of product development.”
When asked if new technologies have affected the paper and stationary market, Ihab said, “The introduction of iPad and new technologies has not affected the stationery market. Demand still exists and people still buy stationary as before. We are targeting schools and educational institutions, which primarily rely on stationary items.”
Broad Networking Opportunities
Rohit Nichani, General Manager, Lexie Write Stationery LLC based in UAE expressed his admiration for Paperworld. He said, “This is my first visit to Paperworld, and the visitors response so far has been largely positive. We met a large number of suppliers from different countries and the show gave me the opportunity to know about different products and the different business that exists within the industry.”
Talking about the major trends witnessed at Paperworld, Rohit said, “Our clients are now looking for cost efficient material, both in stationary and paper. There is also a growing interest in environment friendly materials, where a lot of customers are demanding for green products.”
Mondher Zghal, Manager of Gift & Co. based in Tunisia praised the organizers for the success of the show. He said, “I make sure that I visit Paperworld every year. I have been visiting the event for 11 years now, and every year I can identify new trends and products from the show. It is impossible not to visit Paperworld, especially since the work environment here is encouraging and highly organized.”
He added that this year’s show saw the emergence of a number of new products, especially in office stationery. “Despite the fall in economic conditions, we could trace a number of new products, which we hope will create movement in the otherwise stagnant market. I see a good start this year and hope that market conditions will improve in the coming months.”
My Take Away
There is no doubt that the advent of Paperworld has contributed significantly in revitalizing the global paper and stationery industry. Despite the slow growth in markets, the show generated positive outcome and created a state of optimism among everyone. However the biggest challenge for those who are working in the paper and stationery industry will be to maintain the pace of this optimism till the next Paperworld, which will be held from 25th to 28th January, 2014.
Arabic Calligraphy at Paperworld
Adnan Fudily, a calligrapher who performed at Paperworld drew the attention of visitors by displaying his calligraphic skills. He was at the show to promote Paperworld Middle East, which was held from 5th March to 7th March 2013 at Dubai.