Automechanika: At home worldwide

With 17 events in 16 countries, Automechanika is the world’s most successful B2B trade fair brand. The brand represents some 20,000 exhibitors and 600,000 trade visitors, and in 2018 two new shows are making their debuts in Riyadh and Atlanta. Now they will be joined by another new addition to the international trade fair brand when Automechanika Astana in Kazakhstan opens its doors for the first time in March 2019.

The very first Automechanika took place in Frankfurt in 1971, when it was launched as a replacement for the International Motor Show (IAA) that was cancelled that year on account of the economic crisis. More than 400 exhibitors came to the first Automechanika – a number that has continued to grow ever since. Today, more than ten times as many companies exhibit here. As the automotive industry has become increasingly globalised, Automechanika has followed suit by continually adding new venues worldwide since the 1990s. Together with some 160 partners, supporters and leading associations from the automotive aftermarket, Messe Frankfurt now organises the event in 16 countries across five continents. Every one of the 17 Automechanika trade fairs is tailored to the requirements of its region. The trade fairs are supplemented by extensive supporting programmes featuring training, networking events and special areas of emphasis, making each of them the place to be for business interactions, professional development and a comprehensive overview of the market.

Detlef Braun, Member of the Executive Board of Messe Frankfurt: “The automotive aftermarket is of major economic significance, and Automechanika offers a shared platform for everyone involved. Visiting our platforms worldwide is absolutely essential for anyone looking to keep up with the rapid developments in the automotive services sector. This is where the leading companies and visionary first-movers come to showcase their innovations, and it is where industry experts discuss the latest challenges facing the industry. Automechanika trade fairs are the ideal location in which to bring people and institutions into contact with the solutions and products they are looking for.”

Owing to the rotation of events, eleven Automechanika shows (out of a total of 17) will be taking place in 2018, starting with Automechanika Riyadh, which debuted in February with 150 exhibitors and approx. 5,000 visitors. The trade fair is the perfect place in which to enter the Saudi Arabian market and take advantage of its growing potential. The event takes place in alternate years with Automechanika Jeddah, which was held for the second time in 2017, welcoming over 4,000 trade visitors and 174 exhibitors.

The annual Automechanika Istanbul trade fair has been a permanent member of the brand family since 2001. It was most recently held in April, when it drew 46,000 visitors and 1,351 exhibitors. The event, which is a joint venture between Messe Frankfurt and Hannover Fairs Turkey, has become Turkey’s largest and most international trade fair.

Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City also took place for the second time in April. Vietnam’s leading regional fair for the automotive service industry has been held annually since its launch in 2017, and most recently welcomed 360 exhibitors and more than 8,500 visitors – both figures representing a significant increase over the previous year. The organisers are Messe Frankfurt New Era Business Media Ltd, Chan Chao International Co Ltd and Yorkers Exhibition Service Vietnam.

Another established presence in the international trade fair landscape is Automechanika Dubai, an event that also features an extensive Academy programme and 23 country pavilions. It is the industry’s most important trading platform for the Middle East, Africa, Asia and the CIS states, and when the event took place for the 16th time in May 2018, it drew 1,812 companies and some 27,500 trade visitors from 120 countries.

Automechanika Birmingham was held for the third time from 5 to 7 June 2018. At the show, 500 exhibitors presented their latest products and innovations to approx. 10,000 visitors. A variety of aftermarket seminars featuring a roster of respected industry experts were among the highlights. The event is organised by Forest Exhibitions, a subsidiary of Messe Frankfurt, with the support of the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders (SMMT). Starting in 2019, the show will be held once every two years, in alternation with Automechanika Frankfurt.

INA PAACE Automechanika Mexico City has been a member of the trade fair family since 1999, and with Mexico’s dynamic automotive market it has developed into one of the leading industry events in Latin America. Over 500 exhibitors from 22 countries were on hand at the last fair in July 2018 to show off their products and solutions to some 30,000 interested trade visitors.

In August 2018, the most recent addition to the trade fair family took place for the first time: NACE Automechanika Atlanta. For its debut event, Atlanta welcomed 145 international exhibitors and approx. 4,600 trade visitors. The fair featured numerous workshops designed especially for visitors from the workshop sector.

Russia was one of the first countries to which Automechanika was exported. MIMS Automechanika Moscow is organised by ITEMF Expo, a joint venture between the ITE Group and Messe Frankfurt, and the last time the industry’s leading event for Russia, the CIS states and Eastern Europe was held, more than 1,300 exhibitors from 35 countries were on hand to showcase their products for more than 27,000 visitors.

From 11 to 15 September 2018, the biennial Automechanika Frankfurt trade fair will be celebrating its 25th anniversary, and it is expecting to set a new record with more than 5,000 exhibiting companies. The event will also be featuring numerous new themes, including the business of classic and collectible cars of all ages, REIFEN as a co-located show, and new professional development opportunities, including for the commercial vehicles field, and much else besides. Approx. 133,000 trade visitors from 170 countries flocked to the last Automechanika Frankfurt, with more than one third coming from the workshop area.

In Argentina, Automechanika Buenos Aires – established in 2000 – has grown to become South America’s leading trade fair for the automotive aftermarket. Even in difficult economic times, it has proved itself to be a reliable platform for the industry. The trade fair takes place once every two years, and is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2018. 400 exhibitors and approx. 30,000 trade visitors came to the most recent event.

The final event on the calendar for the year is Automechanika Shanghai, which is held once each year. In 2017 the event continued its growth, posting an increase of nine percent in the number of visitors (to a total of approx. 131,000 visitors from 142 countries) and of five percent in the number of exhibitors (to a total of 6,051 exhibitors from 40 countries).

The 2019 trade fair year is set to kick off with the ACMA Automechanika New Delhi trade fair in February. The event, which takes place once every two years, set a new record for the number of exhibitors when it was last held in 2017, welcoming 552 exhibitors (including a 40 percent increase in international exhibitors) and more than 15,000 visitors.

Another event scheduled for early 2019 is Motortec Automechanika Madrid, which is taking place for the fifth time. The trade fair has been organised by IFEMA (Institución Ferial de Madrid) since 2011, and is held once every two years. When it last took place, the fair attracted 56,000 trade visitors and 685 exhibitors from 27 countries – an increase of ten percent in the number of visitors, and twelve percent in the number of exhibitors.

In March 2019, Automechanika Kuala Lumpur opens the gateway to the ASEAN region. The event, which is held once every two years, welcomed more exhibitors and visitors than ever before in 2017. 246 companies from 18 countries and regions were on hand to present their latest products and innovations to 5,650 visitors from 71 countries and regions. The 2019 event will once again be taking place under the successful ‘Sourcing, Training, Entertainment’ motto.

With the launch of Automechanika Astana in March 2019, the Kazakhstan market is acquiring a full-fledged flagship fair for the automotive aftermarket. For three years now, Messe Frankfurt has been studying the market while supporting the ‘Kazakhstan International Automotive Expo’. With the positive development in exhibitor and visitor figures, the time is right to place the Automechanika brand in the Kazakhstan market. Thanks to its growing automotive production and the age of the country’s existing vehicles, Kazakhstan will enjoy increasing demand for services, aftersales support and repairs in future, fields in which it will have to rely on imports. This means there will be opportunities for international suppliers of parts and components.

Automechanika Johannesburg is the largest trading platform for the automotive sector in Africa. The trade fair is held once every two years, and was most recently accompanied by three events taking place at the same time: Futuroad Expo Johannesburg, SCALEX Johannesburg and REIFEN. The trade fair was held for the fifth time in 2016, when more than 600 exhibitors and 12,700 visitors made their way to South Africa for the occasion. One of the highlights of this event is the presentation of the prestigious Automechanika Innovation Award that is familiar from the Frankfurt event.