SHOWS: Optimistic Fespa moves to October

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The world’s premier wide-format expo, Fespa Global Print Expo 2020, will now take place 6 - 8 October at its original Madrid location. The event was scheduled to take place this week, Fespa postponed it due to the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Fespa Global 2020: postponed on virus fears
Fespa Global 2020: postponed on virus fears

The annual print expo attracts about 25,000 wide-format print business owners and managers from about 150 countries, including a sizeable number from Australia and New Zealand. In addition to the exhibition, the event includes workshops, awards, and a car-wrapping championship.

Neil Felton, Fespa CEO, said Fespa remains confident in the value of the print expo for its stakeholder community.

Not everyone in the wide format community though is impressed, October is only six months away and for Australian and New Zealand wide format printers travel and other restrictions may well last beyond six months. Cactus Imaging director and long time Fespa attendee Keith Ferrell was among those slamming the move, saying it was "ridiculous decision."

The rescheduling of print mega show drupa to the last ten days of next April has thrown a spanner in the works of Fespa and every other print show on the planet. Fespa 2021 was scheduled to take place in May in Munich, that is also likely to be pushed back now to next September or October. If Fespa did not run its 2020 show in October that would mean it would be two and a half years between shows, leaving a gaping financial hole in its accounts.

Neil Felton said, “Despite the ongoing impact that the coronavirus is having on the specialty print sector, we’ve been overwhelmed by the strong demand from our global community for a Fespa platform in 2020. Therefore, we are extremely pleased to confirm that our shows will be going ahead on these re-scheduled dates, and we’re very grateful to the exhibition centre team, who have been fully supportive of our decision under the extraordinary circumstances,” he said.

“Throughout this difficult time, we remain in close dialogue and consultation with our exhibitors to establish how Fespa is able to best support their 2020 product launches, engage with existing customers, and nurture new prospects in the specialty print sector to fuel their future growth.”

Fespa said it would provide further details in due course.

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