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Chinese construction firms take center stage at bauma China

By Wang Ying and Cheng Si in Shanghai | | Updated: 2016-12-12 17:33
Chinese construction firms take center stage at bauma China

Stefan Rummel, managing director of Messe München GmbH. [Photo provided to]

Chinese firms growing dominance of the construction machinery industry was evident at the bauma China international trade fair in Shanghai.

Apart from the size of the event since it began 14 years ago, fair organiser Messe München said biggest change is the increasing participation of Chinese industry players.

"Trade fairs and exhibitions are mirror of the respective market," Messe München managing director Stefan Rummel said.

Fourteen years ago, only 20 percent of all exhibitors were from China, while in the latest show held Nov 22-25, it's closer to 70 percent.

According to Rummel, China is now Messe München's biggest international market outside of Germany, contributing between 15 and 20 percent of the corporation's global revenue.

He said the situation is driving the company to give priority to developing the market on the Chinese mainland.

In response to the characteristics of the Chinese market, Messe München has added some new and localized segments, such as IE Expo for environmental technologies and ISPO for sports shows to diversify their business.

As there is less investment being poured into property and the construction industry due to market over-capacity, Rummel said the company was trying to adjust itself to pursue slower but steady growth.

At the 2016 fair, almost 3,000 exhibitors registered. Given the fact that some industries are in difficulties, the company is offering to help their exhibitors.

"For example, if the exhibitors need less space, we will help them to create the environment they need," Rummel said, adding that the downward pressure faced by some, were not such a big problem for the German exhibition company.

As China encourages innovation and entrepreneurship with preferential policies for startups, the German company is also trying to help startups to enter the market, especially in the B2B sector.

The company plans to bring a startup competition model used in Munich to China in the future.

Occupying an area of 300,000 square meters, the Shanghai New International Expo Centre is a $600 million investment by Shanghai Lujiazui Exhibition Development and Messe München, as well as two other German companies.

It is an international trade fair for construction machinery, building material machines, mining machines, and construction vehicles.

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