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International wide-format expo Fespa Global, held in Amsterdam last month, saw 14 per cent drop in visitor numbers this year compared to last, the decrease attributed to the show's proximity to drupa.

Numbers impacted by drupa: Wide-format show Fespa Global 2024
Numbers impacted by drupa: Wide-format show Fespa Global 2024

Held in Amsterdam just eight weeks prior to the first drupa for eight years, this year’s Fespa Global saw 12,700 visitors, compared to the 14,800 that came to last year’s show. Almost half of the visitors, 45 per cent, came for more than one day.

The ANZ print contingent making the trip fell by almost half, with 68 printers going this time, compared with 130 last year, as local sign and display printers wait for drupa. Agfa was the only major name exhibiting at Fespa that will not be at drupa, but half a dozen big players gave Fespa a miss in favour of drupa, including the likes of Canon, Fujifilm and HP.

Visitors to Fespa Global came from 120 countries, and according to the organiser, the collective median spend increased by 29 per cent, to €2.7bn from the €2bn last time, with 92 per cent of them planning to invest in new equipment in the next 12 months.

Michael Ryan, head of Fespa Global Print Expo, said, “From conversations with exhibitors and visitors at the events, the buzz of creativity and eagerness to learn and explore new solutions and ideas manifested an inspiration to explore new opportunities in everyone. Feedback from our visitors was positive, praising the quality of our international exhibiting community showcasing solutions dedicated to speciality print and signage. I’m looking forward to seeing what the year brings in the wake of the events and I can’t wait for the multitude of ideas and investments from the show to pan out.”

The next Fespa Global Print Expo will return to Messe Berlin, Germany, from 6-9 May next year, which is a fortnight before local print expo PacPrint 2025, which takes place 20-23 May in Sydney.

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