“In conformity with the exhibitors’ vote, we are thus shortening the METAV from five to four days,” says Dr. Wilfried Schäfer, Executive Director of the METAV’s organiser VDW (German Machine Tool Builders’ Association) in Frankfurt am Main. Over 75 per cent of the exhibitors polled in the survey conducted at the end of the METAV voted for a fair lasting four days.

The METAV is thus taking a step that other trade fairs for capital goods have already enacted against the background of visitors’ altered life-style and working habits. “The Saturday is a relic that no longer fits in with the behaviour patterns of present-day visitors to the fair. People value their free weekend, and do not want to spend it at a trade fair,” explains Dr. Schäfer. The METAV came to an end in February 2018 after lasting five days. The development in visitor attendance on the Saturday showed that there was no longer sufficient demand for it.

For the majority of exhibitors, the shorter fair duration will enhance the efficiency of their participation. “Experience from other fairs shows that the Saturday visitors will be largely distributed among the other four days, and thus ensure even higher capacity utilisation on the stands,” says Dr. Schäfer of the VDW. “We are confident that the new scheduling will prove popular with exhibitors and visitors alike, and substantially upgrade the utility of the METAV for both groupings.”