Media Expo Delhi 2019 grows by 14%

MEA Media Expo Excellence Awards to launch in Mumbai

Michael Dehn, general manager – Sales and Marketing, Messe Frankfurt Trade Fairs India at Media Expo Delhi 2019
Michael Dehn, general manager – Sales and Marketing, Messe Frankfurt Trade Fairs India at Media Expo Delhi 2019

In a conversation with Michael Dehn, general manager – Sales and Marketing, Messe Frankfurt Trade Fairs India at Media Expo Delhi 2019, he said, “There is an increase in the number of visitors at this year’s Delhi show. The exhibition increased by 14% in size than last year. This is a dynamic industry and the three big concerns at this year’s show – environmental concerns and cost.”

Expanding on his point, Dehn said, “There is a huge pressure by customers to replace existing materials with more sustainable options. There is also a problem of replacing flex material with more environmentally friendly options. It is difficult to give up flex altogether because it is durable, can be used indoor and outdoor, very cheap, and finding its alternative is not easy. But I am honestly not worried about it, it is a pure volume question. The volume of the alternative material is low, but the moment it becomes mainstream, the volume will go up and its price will go down. Flex is affordable right now because of its volume. I am sure when flex was introduced, it was probably very expensive.”

“The mentality in the industry is also changing. The exhibitors tell me that the pressure from the customer’s side is increasing, especially with big customers who are willing to pay for it. And I am happy to say that one of the presentations during the conference on the first day of Media Expo focused on sustainability. The major industry players are passionate about these initiatives and the market will follow them,” Dehn explained.

The pressure from the customers for innovative options is forcing manufacturers to come up with new ideas. “In terms of 3D printing, there is more 3D printing technology this time than the last time. We have the world’s biggest 3D printer, Massivit 3D, on display by Arrow Digital. Apart from that, there is a question of how will digital replace traditional products. Digital products will not replace traditional technology. They can be integrated to complement each other. Some things are better on the screen while others are better in print. The two forms of technology will have to support each other. And you can see that happening in the form of hybrid printers at the stands of our exhibitors,” Dehn said.

According to Dehn, the exhibition had 25% international exhibitors. The show has grown by 64% since Messe Frankfurt took over Media Expo from MEX Exhibitions in 2016. The major attraction of the show was large format printing. Visitors had the chance to see live demonstrations, compare different products, and interact with the exhibitors to make decisions in real-time. The exhibition also had small and medium-sized businesses

Media Expo Mumbai will take place from 20 to 22 February 2020. Most of the exhibitors from the Delhi show have already confirmed their participation at the upcoming Mumbai show. The MEA Media Excellence will be launched at Media Expo Mumbai 2020. Along with Ernst & Young, Messe Frankfurt will organize the awards in the categories – innovative use of hoardings/billboards (non-lit), innovative use of ambient media, innovative use of transit media, innovative use of digital signage, innovative display of brand through POP/POS, eco-friendly brand of the year, digital signage company of the year, innovative POP solutions/products, printer of the year and agency of the year. The winners will be announced at the Mumbai show. The jury will include journalists, designers, and industry leaders.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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