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Record number of visitors – Buyers from 168 countries make Ambiente 2018 the most international ever

Feb 13, 2018

After five action-packed days the world’s leading trade fair of the consumer goods industry finished in an upbeat mood today. Trade visitors from more countries than ever before spent their time networking and ordering the latest products from all over the world for their companies. They also obtained worthwhile stimuli for a digital future.

Ambiente 2018
Ambiente 2018

Occupying an exhibition space of 308,000 square metres (gross), [1] 4,441 exhibitors from 89 countries [2] revealed the trends of this coming business year. 81 per cent [3] of all exhibitors came from outside Germany, making Ambiente the most international consumer goods trade fair of all times. The proportion of senior international decision-makers across all trade sectors had gone up by six per cent compared with last year, making up 60 per cent of visitors. It was the highest share ever recorded. This led to good export transactions and an excellent mood in the halls. In total, 134,600 buyers from 168 countries [4] visited Frankfurt am Main to attend Ambiente. As expected, there were fewer German visitors in Frankfurt. This was partly due to changes in the German retail landscape, and partly because the event coincided with Carnival as well as school holidays in Germany’s southern states, while being dependent on the international trade fair calendar.

“Consumerism is fashionable! Ambiente hosts the entire world. Every February, the international consumer goods industry receives direction here for the entire year. This is impressively borne out by the number of orders and the quality of German and international buyers,” says Detlef Braun, Member of the Executive Board of Messe Frankfurt GmbH. A similarly positive conclusion is reached by Thomas Grothkopp, Managing Director of the German Trade Association for Residential Accommodation and Offices (HWB): “Ambiente has shown us once again that nothing can replace personal contact with new and existing suppliers and their innovative products. This trade fair in Frankfurt has totally met the expectations of the retail trade.”

The top ten visitor nations after Germany were Italy, China, France, the United States, the UK, the Netherlands, Spain, Turkey, Korea and Switzerland. Satisfaction ratings among visitors remained stable at an extremely high level of 96 per cent. Above-average growth in visitors’ numbers was recorded from China, Korea, Russia, the North African countries, South Africa, all of South America, Turkey, Lebanon and Cyprus.

Exhibitors’ voices
Despite a slight dip in Ambiente’s visitor numbers, the quality and number of visitors were just right. On this point all exhibitors at Ambiente were unanimous.


Birgit Dubberke, Marketing Director at BHS Tabletop, says:
“We keep being impressed by the internationalism of Ambiente – not just in terms of exhibitors, but also visitors. It’s the meeting point of the industry. It’s a place for making valuable contacts with countries we’d normally never get to. As I see it, the HoReCa market is very much up and coming. The visitors are different, requiring a more emotive appeal – as private individuals – and this is reflected in the restaurants, hotels and the food. And we can also see it at Ambiente. The demand is there.“

Maren Lehmann, Director of Internal Sales at the porcelain company Staatliche Porzellan-Manufaktur Meissen, says:
“Ambiente 2018 went very well for us. We reached our targets, and so we can be pleased with the results. Meissen presented itself in a new way. We wanted to show that we can do far more than be traditional – and we’ve succeeded. The trade fair provided us with an excellent platform. And the organisation was first class, too.”


Alexander Haas, Sales Manager at Scholtissek, says:
“Whether it’s architects, hotels or restaurants and cafés, Ambiente attracts the B2B visitors we want to appeal to. Contract business went extremely well again this year: Both the quality and the number of visitors were just right. We achieved our sales targets, and we are pleased.”

Michael Rossmann, Managing Director at PAD Home, says:
“Ambiente has an international audience and a very good venue. Our stand had a great atmosphere, lovely products and committed staff. This is why things went so amazingly well for us at Ambiente 2018. When it comes to internationalism, then the trade fair was in an even better position this year: Our stand was visited by an unusual number of Italians, as well as Argentinians and other South Americans, which was quite new to us.”


Rebecca Staton, Sales Manager for France and Germany at Jellycat, says:
“The trade fair went pretty well for us. This was already the case last year, and so we are very pleased. Although there were lots of people just having a look, we also received a good number of orders. The quality of visitors was good, and so was the level of internationalism. France was there, lots of visitors from Germany, Luxembourg and Switzerland, and a few Asian countries. Another figure that met our expectations was the number of new customers we gained.”

Ralf Vogt, owner of Noi:
“We are pleased with the result. Ambiente went well for us, our collection was well received, and there is a general demand for it. Also, I can’t complain about the quality of visitors or their willingness to place orders: those who come to Ambiente are also authorised to place orders.”

Vaarwel Netherlands, Namaskar India!

The world’s leading trade fair ran very much under the Dutch banner in 2018. The traditional partner country presentation had been staged by the Dutch industrial designer Robert Bronwasser. DO DUTCH put consumer goods from the Netherlands into a new and unusual context. Also, numerous activities and events were held on the partner country day – all masterminded by Dutch organisers. The guest of honour attracting everyone’s attention at Ambiente yesterday was Sylvie Meis. The well-known TV presenter and entrepreneur, who is also from the Netherlands, went on a tour round the exhibition halls exploring modern design from the Netherlands and Germany. Next year’s Ambiente will be held from 8 to 12 February 2019 and will be focused very much on the Indian subcontinent.

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Ambiente – a leading international trade fair

Ambiente is the leading international trade fair and the world’s number one in products associated with dining, cooking, household goods, gift items, jewellery, fashion accessories, interior decoration, ideas for the home and furnishing accessories. It is “The Show” for an entire industry. The breadth and width of Ambiente make its unrivalled product range unique throughout the world. Ambiente 2018 featured 4,441 exhibitors and attracted 134,600 trade visitors from 168 countries, presenting traditional and innovative products for five days. This most important global consumer goods trade fair offers a wide range of events, programmes for newcomers, trend presentations and award ceremonies.

[1] FKM-certified, 2017: 308,000 square metres (gross)

[2] FKM-certified, 2017: 4,460 exhibitors from 94 countries.

[3] 2017: 80 per cent

[4] FKM-certified, 2017: 140,963 from 153 countries

Background information on Messe Frankfurt

Messe Frankfurt is the world’s biggest trade fair, convention and event organiser with its own premises. It employs a workforce of 2,500* at around 30 sites and generates annual sales of around EUR 661* million. Thanks to far-reaching ties with the relevant sectors and an international sales network, the Group provides effective support for its customers and their business interests. By offering a wide range of services, both on site and online, Messe Frankfurt gives its worldwide customers a consistently high level of flexible support in planning, organising and running their events. This wide range of services includes renting exhibition premises, trade fair construction, marketing, human resources and food services. The Group has its head office in Frankfurt am Main and is owned partly by the City of Frankfurt (60%) and partly by the State of Hesse (40%). * Provisional key figures for 2017

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