InnoTrans 2016: Driving growth, a platform for innovations and an international stage for the industry
• More exhibitors and trade visitors
• Numerous business transactions and joint venture agreements
• 127 vehicles on the Outdoor Display
• All participants in InnoTrans 2016 rate it best ever
• InnoTrans Convention with an outstanding experts’ dialogue
• 16,000 train enthusiasts during the Public Days
Berlin became the pre-eminent meeting place for the global railway industry from 20 to 23 September when this year’s InnoTrans took place there. This four-day event ended on a high point with the best results in its history. Compared with its immediate predecessor, exhibitor numbers rose by seven per cent and trade visitor participation by four per cent. 2,955 exhibitors from 60 countries presented their products and an extensive range of services on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds. All available space on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds was occupied, a total of 112,000 square metres.
The Outdoor Display featured 127 innovative vehicles. Among the highlights were 149 products making their international debuts – convincing proof of the innovative strengths of the railway industry and the appeal of this trade show as a marketing platform and its ability to promote innovation. This year’s InnoTrans attracted 137,391 trade visitors from more than 140 countries to Berlin. Satisfaction levels among the trade visitors were in excess of 90 per cent.
InnoTrans gives an impetus to business
Once again this year InnoTrans justified its reputation as the world’s largest market place for the industry. Contracts worth millions and numerous joint ventures were signed and announced at the trade show. For example, Vossloh and CRCC High-Tech Equipment Corporation Limited (CRCCE) have signed two contracts for the construction of self-propelled high speed grinding machines and an agreement has been signed between Solaris and the Leipziger Verkehrsbetriebe for the delivery of 14 of the latest generation of Solaris Urbino 18 buses.
Stadler announced several successful negotiations leading, for example, to an order from Alpha Trains for the conversion of 44 electric multiple units. Bombardier Transportation and the manufacturer China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC) have extended and intensified their cooperation with the signing of a strategic joint venture agreement.
InnoTrans is also gaining in importance as a hub for communication between politics and industry. For example, during the trade fair the Federal Ministry for Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) approved support for two development projects for alternative drive systems, one with a value of four million euros for Bombardier and a further eight million for Alstom.
Highlight: Vehicle presentations on the Outdoor Display
Trade visitors were able to inspect no fewer than127 rail vehicles on the Outdoor Display. Leading domestic and foreign exhibitors made use of the trade show to present their latest vehicles to an international audience for the first time, or for the symbolic handover of vehicles to their customers.
Alstom exhibited its new regional train, the fuel cell-powered Coradia Lint, on the Outdoor Display. Siemens demonstrated the “Velaro Türkei” high-speed train and the “Metro Riad” underground train. Both celebrated their world debut. Johannes Max-Theurer, managing director of Plasser & Theurer, handed over a new Series 705.1 tunnel inspection vehicle to Dr. Roland Bosch, head of Production at DB Netz AG.
Stadler handed over the new EC250 “Giruno” Eurocity train in the presence of Andreas Meyer, CEO of the Swiss national rail operator SBB, and Peter Spuhler, Group CEO and proprietor of Stadler. Mercedes-Benz Special Trucks presented its new road-rail Unimog.
Survey of exhibitors and trade visitors
Exhibitors and trade visitors revealed that they were very satisfied with the outcome of InnoTrans 2016. According to a representative survey, around 90 per cent of exhibitors would recommend this event to others and clearly intent to take part in the event again. Some 90 per cent of exhibitors anticipate commercial results following the trade show.
Trade visitors obtained a positive overall impression of the trade show, the range of exhibits and the commercial results. Trade visitors attending InnoTrans 2016 again included a high proportion of leading decision-makers. Within their respective companies half of all trade visitors exercise a decisive or contributory influence on purchasing and procurement decisions. This was also reflected in the large number of business deals that were finalised. 90 per cent of the trade visitors would recommend this trade show to others.
InnoTrans Convention offers an outstanding dialogue between experts
For visitors and industry experts the InnoTrans Convention offers a level playing field for professional discussions. There were eleven events in the five main forums, dealing with mobility issues of current and future relevance. For example, at the Dialog Forum the focus was on digitalisation in rail passenger and freight transport, and on the technology for digital services.
With some prominent figures the Rail Leaders‘ Summit took place under the heading of “Innovation in the Digital Age: Rail faces the challenges of the Future“. Alexander Dobrindt, Federal Minister for Transport and Digital Infrastructure, emphasised the innovative strengths in the railway sector. The railways have always set the tone for innovations.
The International Design Forum provided an arena for discussions about closer links between design and mobility. The discussions by the speakers at the DB Innovation Forum took place under the heading of “Open Innovation@InnoTrans – Creating a better and more sustainable mobility“. Among the topics dealt with at the International Tunnel Forum were the added value of building information modelling (BIM), i.e. interconnected design, planning and building in the construction of tunnels.
Public Days attract 16,000 train enthusiasts
On 24 and 25 September some 16,000 train enthusiasts and adventurous families gathered on the Outdoor Display at Messe Berlin. The 3,500 metres of track featured the latest freight cars, locomotives, trams, entire trains and special rail vehicles. Providing plenty of enjoyment away from the tracks were several bouncy castles, a super Fun Slide and the country’s largest toy train set that visitors could walk around, covering 120 square metres. There were talks by Deutsche Bahn about regional railway topics, vocational training, construction projects and environmental protection. On Sunday Deutsche Bahn organised the Railwayman’s Day, where visitors’ question were answered by, among others, Berlin’s Transport Senator Andreas Geisel and the Deutsche Bahn representative for Berlin, Alexander Kaczmarek.
Exhibitors opinions about InnoTrans 2016
Dr. Ben Möbius, Chief Executive, German Railway Industry Association (VDB): InnoTrans in Berlin provided impressive evidence of the high degree of digitalisation in the rail industry. It offers the best opportunity anywhere in the world to see rail technology at its best – with the emphasis on efficiency, comfort and protecting the climate. It was very apparent that rail transport is increasingly a mobile part of the Internet of Things. As a result mobility on the rails is becoming the best it has ever been. It was also very evident that there is one pre-eminent address when it comes to advanced mobility – InnoTrans in Berlin.
Klaus Deller, Chairman of the Board, Knorr-Bremse AG: Extremely keen interest among the trade visitors, the many visitors who thronged to the Knorr-Bremse display, numerous discussions at a very high level, the signing of various contracts and an award from Russian Railways: that was the outcome of the trade show for Knorr-Bremse. The intelligent interconnection of sub-systems is very much in tune with the times, and is one way that we are currently offering secure and efficient solutions for manufacturers and operators.
Dr. Michael Holzapfel, Head of the Business Division Rail Europe, Schaeffler Technologies AG & Co. KG: The successes at InnoTrans 2016 exceeded our expectations. Once again this trade show provided an effective setting for constructive discussions with international business partners, making it the perfect industry meeting place. Very interesting discussions took place about our new products and solutions for urban and interurban mobility of the future. Our digitalisation concepts met with keen interest. We are looking forward to InnoTrans 2018.
Dr. Jochen Eickholt, CEO, Division Mobility of Siemens AG:For us InnoTrans 2016 was an outstanding event. One of the main focuses of our presentation was on digital technology that will enable our customers to compete more effectively and to strengthen their position on the market: automated driving for an increased and more flexible throughput, digital services to provide maximum availability, and IT-based systems for outstanding passenger comfort. The extraordinary level of interest from so many of our customers confirms the importance of digitalisation for our industry. We intend to continue developing our technological leadership in this field.
Philippe Citroën, Director General of the Union of the European Railway Industries (UNIFE): Once again, InnoTrans proved to be the most attractive exhibition for the rail industry. UNIFE took the opportunity of such a remarkable event to present the results of the World Rail Market Study, sign an important Memorandum of Understanding on ERTMS and reinforce its cooperation with European and international stakeholders. I was impressed by the vitality and innovations of our industry and I am already looking forward to the 2018 edition.
Dr. h.c. Hans M. Schabert, Chairman of the Board, Vossloh AG: Cost management, noise reduction and efficient route availability were certainly the right choices for our agenda, as was confirmed by the in-depth discussions with our customers. Once again InnoTrans was the ideal experts’ forum for discussing the latest developments on the worldwide railway market. Our customers are increasingly seeking integrated solutions from a single source, and we can offer them this through the successful way in which we combine our skills and resources. This is accurately summed up by our slogan ‘Connecting expertise’.
Laurent Troger, President, Bombardier Transportation: InnoTrans 2016 more than met my expectations. The main thrust of our message was on mobility and the concept of connecting people. This was borne out by the many participants who engaged in passionate discussions about improved mobility within and between cities. For four days we took part in an intensive dialogue with customers from all over the world, who were concerned with ways in which we can work together to design innovative and sustainable mobility solutions. Today digitalisation certainly has a key role to play. With this in mind we took our visitors on a journey into the future, on the ’Virtual Reality Tour‘, to enable them to discover our new products and solutions.
Didier Pfleger, Vice President, Alstom Germany & Austria: InnoTrans is always a highlight for Alstom and our international customers. The success of the world’s largest trade fair for the rail sector is due to its flawless organisation and a fantastic range of new products and innovative technologies. We look forward to 2018.
Steffen Straub, Director of Trade Fairs and Events, Deutsche Bahn AG: By providing quality and digital expertise we are contributing to progress and the future of mobility. InnoTrans offers the ideal platform for us to put this to the test.
Herbert Zimmermann, Chief Executive, Electric Railways and Vehicles Division of the ZVEI: Once again InnoTrans 2016 was a resounding success. Digitalisation was the dominant theme. The German mobility industry – and especially the member companies of the ZVEI – provided impressive demonstrations of their innovative capabilities, for example with driverless trains and predictive maintenance.
Dr. Christoph Hoppe, CEO, Thales Germany: InnoTrans once again lived up to its reputation as the leading international trade fair for transport technology. As a key player Thales was able to meet its customers from Germany and abroad, welcome political stakeholders and hold many interesting meetings.
Jürgen Fenske, President of the Association of German Transport Companies (VDV): Already on the first day of this trade show the massive potential of the industry, and its future prospects, were very evident. These impressions were confirmed time and again during the course of the event: The past few days have shown that rail transport around the world is an efficient, modern and ecological form of transport for the future. Those responsible for setting up this trade show, including the Association of German Transport Companies, can be justifiably proud of the fact that InnoTrans has become internationally acknowledged as a leading railway event, where manufacturers and operators can present their latest innovations.
J. Wolfgang Nagel, Head of Marketing, Nokia Networks: We were very satisfied with the reactions we received this year. There was a notable increase in interest compared to the last event and we had over 100 trade visitors on our display. Our meeting rooms were booked all the time and our press event, at which we presented our pilot project for an integrated LTE network on the Paris metro, was an all-round success.
Paul Denton, Senior Vice President Marketing and Analytics, Progress Rail: It is always a great opportunity to attend InnoTrans for a global view of the world's best rail customers and suppliers. We were very excited to showcase our latest technology and appreciate the response by our customers and the media in attendance at the trade show.
Barbara Hendricks, Federal Minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety: By 2050 at the latest transport must become predominantly greenhouse gas-neutral if we are to meet the climate protection objectives of the Paris Agreement. In order to achieve this the railways should play a greater part in handling our transport requirements, and there should also be an increased commitment to the use of electrical energy. We can only achieve zero emissions if ultimately all our energy comes from renewables. InnoTrans showcases innovative solutions that point exactly in this direction.
Marina Winder, Group Management and Director of Communications & PR, Stadler: InnoTrans went very well for us. This trade fair provides us with a good opportunity to meet all the key market players. We exhibited six new products and must surely be among the companies with the highest number of innovations.
Dirk Junghans, Managing Director & Head of Sales, Marketing & Customer Services, Liebherr Transportation System GmbH & Co KG: For us InnoTrans continues to be the number one trade fair for transport technology. It provides us with an ideal platform for showcasing our innovative solutions to an international audience, including eco-friendly air-conditioning and electro-hydraulic systems. This year the official presentation of our new MACS 8.0 modular air-conditioning system at InnoTrans marked a world debut.
Zhou Li, General Director of Science & Technology Management Department, China Railway: As the largest of all railway trade shows InnoTrans exercises a major influence. We operate the world’s largest high-speed rail network, and we make use of this platform in order to help international trade visitors to gain a better understanding of China Railway, as well as to discuss joint ventures in the technology field with our friends from around the world.
Xu Houguang, Director of the Press Department, CRRC Corporation Ltd: InnoTrans, which takes place every two years in Berlin, Germany, is the leading trade show for rail transport technology. It is the premier event for the rail industry and provides the market leaders with an important platform for presenting themselves and their products.
Zbigniew Palenica, Member of the Board, Solaris: I would like to express my admiration for the way that InnoTrans has developed. We are very happy to be here. Our visitors came from many countries, from the Baltic to Italy, and we met many potential partners from Asia.
Tetsuya Takahashi, Head of the Transport Systems Division, Mitsubishi Electric Europe: For us InnoTrans went very well. The commercial and political contacts were outstanding.