Interview with José Miguel Corres, Managing Director of the Bilbao Exhibition Centre
June 30, 2010
BIEMH 2010, been fulfilled the expectations of visitors?
Above the numeric item, exhibitors are telling us that each day is noted more interested people and increased number of countries and professionals. The fairs are thus: the first days are a bit softer and they later grow throughout the week. For now, expectations are above what we were waiting for. The fair has undergone some circumstances caused by exogenous factors - crisis, in short - that has reduced the number of pavilions and in number of meters. There is a ratio - never talked but always known - number of meters / number of visitors and we sincerely are above this ratio. This is arithmetic, but on the other hand, exhibitors commented us on the situation with a fair euphemism: there are fewer people but more interested. People who are at the fair is in the sector and on a project. Is an opinion that have transmitted no longer representatives of the fair, but a number of institutions and personalities that have visited, so are more open to say what they think.
In the type of visitor, has been more foreign visitors? And if so, they have featured some country rather than another? Was there any difference in this respect?
From Bilbao Exhibition Centre, we have made an effort much higher in certain countries with greater purchasing power. In the old Europe we have more crisis and there are other countries which have less purchasing power. At the moment, Latin America, Mercosur, are countries that have more options. We have done different surveys in comparison to other years and trade missions, and hence we brought businesses and prescribers: from Mexico, to the Mabe group, which is the most powerful company in the sector of household appliances; from Brazil, has come to Embraer, one of the most important of the aeronautics sector. Also since Brazil has been, Skania and Volkswagen, Swedish and German in origin, but with the factories of components and assemblers of trucks that are riding there. They are people currently are growing, which is increasing its production lines and need these máquina-herramientas to manufacture machines and final product. It is here where we have placed emphasis. During the early days of the fair were visitors from 40 different countries though we estimate that they can become 45, 50 or 60 people have passed through here, apart from 24 different countries that we have already as exhibitors.
Recently heard comments from some companies that consider that the formula of fair as such seems is outdated and the need for a change. Do you think that you can be the case?
It may be in other sectors, but definitely in this sector does not. This formula is valid, has been valid since the middle ages. It has undergone revisions and updates. For example, there was a time that was more important to attract visitors. But in this case, honestly, if there is a fair and carny sector in itself is that of machine tools. Is true, that when things go wrong there are people who say "I'm not going by...", but others also say that the grapes were green. I believe that we not miss missing anyone, here are all the important companies in the machine tool. Will not find a single brand of large is not here: DMG, Mori Seiki, Mazak, say some. We have the top of the country, that we should not forget that we are the ninth state of machine tool in the world. If any company for their personal or specific circumstances have not able to come, so sorry, surely they also, but if it is better to say "we are not going because it is not appropriate" or "we will not because there is a major crisis", it is also understandable.
The fair has been opened by the Prince, has benefited from the assistance of the lehendakari, among other authorities... have they have felt the support of the authorities?
Absolutely. Administrations are in our Council, are important to people around us, and I believe that they have been consistent with this. The truth is that we have had support of all Governments, whether monarchy, or the Government, with entities like Icex, the Spanish Ministry of industry, and also the Minister of industry that we gave significant support with the announcement of the Plan Renove: they kept the time to do so in this House. Closer to this land, we has also visited the general Deputy of Vizcaya and Guipúzcoa. I believe that we not miss missing nobody: all administrations are represented at the highest level.
In connection with the Renove Plan, have transmitted it something exhibitors?
Yes, for example in Hall 1, right area, which displays the large machines, told us that two or three operations that were outstanding, as he was announced the Renove Plan, were closed. On big machine, such operations are very important.
In conclusion, do scheduled to keep the fair in June?
No, it is not planned. This year was held in June by a few settings in the show calendar. There have been who said that it has been by relocating to the crisis and is not true. I think that date we has been good and that people are happy. We are going to expect the polls we usually do on the valuation on the date to our exhibitors and visitors. For now, it seems that valuations are positive. In the framework of the fair, during a lunch with journalists, I was surprised to hear that is valued much light, i.e., when just the fair is still light in the street. These are issues that contribute to that people feel comfortable with us and to be in a few dates are conflicting as to proximity of other events, as it may sound well. But we will wait to read what the polls tell us. We are open to it and on our part see you no major problem.