Interview – Raj Manek, Messe Frankfurt Asia

Messe Frankfurt India brings back face-to-face interactions

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Messe Frankfurt
Raj Manek, executive director, Messe Frankfurt Asia Holdings. Photo IPP

The 47th edition of Media Expo was held from 18 – 20 November 2021 at India Expo Center, Greater Noida, just across the river from New Delhi. Indian Printer & Publisher correspondent Priyanka Tanwar got a chance to interact with Raj Manek, executive director, Messe Frankfurt Asia Holdings. Here are edited excerpts from the interview:

Indian Printer & Publisher – Is this your first exhibition after the Covid-19 pandemic?

Raj Manek – After two years of no exhibitions, this is our very first exhibition along with LED Expo which is taking place in the other hall. 

IPP – What challenges did you face while organizing the Media Expo New Delhi 2021?

Raj Manek – The biggest challenge is the supply chain – there are a lot of exhibitors who are waiting for parts and everything. That has been our biggest challenge. We have very, very strong loyal customers for the Media Expo. The show is extremely good and it is still good today. I think many of our exhibitors had a supply chain problem.

The second challenge is that it is just the beginning of the new normal, so exhibitors and visitors are now getting the confidence to come back to live events. 

IPP – What special precautions have you taken for Media Expo New Delhi 2021?

Raj Manek – As you can see, we have ensured mandatory mask use. Everybody in the halls is wearing masks across the halls. We have temperature checks at every point. We also have Covid-19 centers. We have ensured social distancing. Everything is contactless now – there is no more form filling. There is contactless entry into the halls. We have invested a lot of money in our systems for registration so that people can smoothly come into the exhibitions without any form filling or touching of any objects.

IPP – What are the areas that you are covering through the Media Expo New Delhi 2021?

Raj Manek – The Media Expo covers a range of printing, signage, and outdoor advertising. All the key players are here – all the big boys of Colorjet, HP, Mehta Cad Cam are here. They are supporting the exhibition in a big way. So, we cover the whole spectrum for the outdoor and indoor signage and the digital side as well.

IIPP – What are your expectations from this event?

Raj Manek – The expectation is that we re-create the platform that has been missed for two years. We bring the industry together with a face-to-face connection and our exhibitors have good interactions with business and we raise morale. Ultimately, we have all been either working from home or working remotely. I just want to get back the feeling of being with your colleagues, your partners, your suppliers, and your friends once again in a face-to-face environment. 

IPP – What are your other upcoming events?

Raj Manek – In 2022, we have a host of events including the Media Expo, LED Expo, and Paper World exhibitions.

IPP – Are you planning to organize any new fairs in the upcoming months?

Raj Manek We have a portfolio of about 12-15 existing fairs and we will continue with those. The new fairs will have to wait till there is a little bit more normality in the marketplace, and then we will, of course, be announcing some new fairs. 

In 2024, we are looking at full recovery and growth-led investment in Indian printing

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. It created the category of privately owned B2B print magazines in the country. And by its diversification in packaging, (Packaging South Asia), food processing and packaging (IndiFoodBev) and health and medical supply chain and packaging (HealthTekPak), and its community activities in training, research, and conferences (Ipp Services, Training and Research) the organization continues to create platforms that demonstrate the need for quality information, data, technology insights and events.

India is a large and tough terrain and while its book publishing and commercial printing industry have recovered and are increasingly embracing digital print, the Indian newspaper industry continues to recover its credibility and circulation. The signage industry is also recovering and new technologies and audiences such as digital 3D additive printing, digital textiles, and industrial printing are coming onto our pages. Diversification is a fact of life for our readers and like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in nominal and real terms – in a region poised for the highest change in year to year expenditure in printing equipment and consumables. Our 2024 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock – to emphasize your visibility and relevance to your customers and turn potential markets into conversations.

– Naresh Khanna

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