Wolfram N Diener becomes new president & CEO at Messe Düsseldorf

Erhard Wienkamp elected managing director

Wolfram Diener (Photo: Messe Düsseldorf, Andreas Wiese)
Wolfram Diener (Photo: Messe Düsseldorf, Andreas Wiese)

On 4 December 2019, the shareholders’ meeting of Messe Düsseldorf, presided over by the Chairman, Lord Mayor Thomas Geisel, appointed Wolfram N Diener (55) as the new president and chief executive officer and Erhard Wienkamp (61) as the new managing director, Operative Trade Fair Business, Messe Düsseldorf. The shareholders’ meeting was followed with the recommendation of the Supervisory Board of Messe Düsseldorf. In his new position, Diener succeeds Werner M Dornscheidt (65), who will retire at the end of June 2020, after almost 17 years at the helm of the Düsseldorf trade fair company. Diener will take up his post on 1 July 2020. Wienkamp will succeed Hans Werner Reinhard (49), who left the company on 30 September 2019, as operative managing director on 1 January 2020.

“Markets are shifting and the world is becoming more international, more digital and complex. With their many years of trade fair experience worldwide, Wolfram N. Diener and Erhard Wienkamp are the ideal torchbearers to lead Messe Düsseldorf into the future. They stand for both renewal and continuity,” Dornscheidt said.

The Board of Management at Messe Düsseldorf has become leaner as a result of the personnel changes. Alongside Diener as president and chief executive officer, Wienkamp will be the only managing director, Operative Trade Fair Business, Messe Düsseldorf. Bernhard J Stempfle, responsible for finance and technology, completes the management team. Geisel welcomed this restructuring and said, “Messe Düsseldorf will have a streamlined, powerful, and above all, an expert management team that will give the company the necessary agility to face the future in these times of digitalization, global challenges and growing responsibility.” Geisel believes this guarantees the strategic positioning of the trade fair, thus providing continuity both in terms of addressing customers and generating a positive economic impact for the state capital.

Diener will continue to be responsible for the operational projects he has managed since joining the company in 2018 – the global portfolio of health and medical technologies with the trade fairs Medica, CompaMed and RehaCare International; the global portfolio of metals and flow technologies with the trade fairs GIFA, ThermProcess, NewCast, Valve World Expo, METEC, wire, and Tube. He will also handle the portfolio of beauty with the trade fairs Beauty Düsseldorf and Top Hair – Die Messe; the portfolio of glass technologies with the trade fairs glasstec and tasc; the portfolio of occupational safety and health with A+A – Safety, Security and Health at Work, as well as the portfolio of caravanning and outdoor with Caravan Salon Düsseldorf and TourNatur.

In addition, he will be responsible for the global portfolio of plastics and rubber with the world-leading trade fair, K and also for the departments of international business, corporate communications, protocol and events, human resources, legal and insurance, internal auditing as well as affiliates and subsidiaries.

A graduate of business administration, Diener was responsible for the Asian trade fair operations of Messe Frankfurt from the end of the 1990s as managing director. In 2001, he joined the management at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre. After various management positions with Asian trade fair and congress companies, he successfully worked as a member of the management board at UBM Asia in Hong Kong until 2018.

Erhard Wienkamp elected managing director

Erhard Wienkamp (Photo: Messe Düsseldorf, Andreas Wiese)
Erhard Wienkamp (Photo: Messe Düsseldorf, Andreas Wiese)

Wienkamp takes over the projects of Hans Werner Reinhard as managing director of Operative Trade Fair Business – the global portfolio of processing and packaging with the world’s leading trade fair, interpack; the portfolio of wine and spirits with ProWein, the portfolio of print technologies with drupa; the portfolio of retail and retail technologies with EuroShop and EuroCIS as well as the portfolio of boating and watersport events with boot Düsseldorf. He also takes on the departments of corporate strategic development and market research. An executive director at Messe Düsseldorf since 2002, Wienkamp will continue to be responsible for partner and guest events, official participation, special events, and international trade fair management.

An economics graduate, Wienkamp joined Messe Düsseldorf in 1993 after working in the Foreign Trade Department of the Federation of German and Foreign Trade (Bundesverband des Deutschen Groß- und Außenhandels) in Bonn and the German-Argentinian Chamber of Commerce in Buenos Aires. As project director at Messe Düsseldorf, he was initially responsible for the leading international trade fairs K and interpack, among others, later heading up the foreign division. “For more than 25 years, I have been a driving force behind the development of Messe Düsseldorf. I am delighted to be able to use my national and international trade fair experience as a managing director of Operative Trade Fair Business for the company,” Wienkamp said.

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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