Exhibitors, visitors and conference delegates at the 11th UTECH Europe exhibition held in Maastricht, The Netherlands from 17th - 19th April have confirmed the outstanding success of the event. Held in the year the industry celebrates 75 years since the initial patent marking the advent of polyurethanes chemistry, UTECH Europe 2012 attracted 160 exhibiting companies, a 14% increase from when the event was last held in 2009.
Visitor numbers were also up considerably at 3,561 for 2012 compared to 2,692 in 2009, an increase of over 32%, confirming UTECH Europe’s premier position in the calendar of global polyurethane events. These visitors came from 86 countries, highlighting the global reach of the polyurethanes industry. The UTECH Europe Conference that ran alongside the exhibition welcomed 519 delegates this year in total, an increase of 27% from 2009.
The total attendance for the 3-day event was 4,986, an increase of 19% since the 2009 event. This figure includes just over 1,400 passes distributed to exhibitors. No less than 96% of visitors said they would recommend visiting UTECH Europe to a colleague, and in a further endorsement 88% of exhibitors said UTECH Europe was very successful or successful in meeting their overall objectives.
“The polyurethanes industry is back on track as a highly technical, innovative sector, which has strong growth prospects as a result of its versatility and ability to offer solutions to customer problems in sectors as diverse as automotive, construction, aerospace, furniture, electrical and medical,” said Sue Rothwell, business development director at organiser Crain Communications. “The success of this year’s UTECH Europe event is both an affirmation of the strength of the polyurethanes industry and of Europe’s continuing prominence within the global PU sector.”
This year’s conference and exhibition was “The best UTECH ever,” according to Max Taverna, of Italian polyurethane processing equipment expert Cannon SpA. The company was so busy that it had to order more tables for its stand to accommodate visitors.
Catalyst and surfactant supplier Momentive Performance Materials also had “a good show, with its largest booth ever,” according to Tony Lanchak, head of the urethane additives division. Visitors to Momentive’s stand came from a wide cross-section geographically he said, across West and East Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and more.
Most exhibitors, such as Peter Huo, global marketing director of Yantai Wanhua Polyurethane Co Ltd, felt that the audience was much bigger than three years ago, when the UTECH event coincided with the drastic economic downturn.
UTECH Europe was “extraordinarily good,” for Polish polyols supplier PCC Rokita, commented Charles Ritchie, managing director, who was too busy to eat lunch on all three days. He also said he felt the event had drawn in more overseas visitors.
‘’The best thing about UTECH was the customer interaction on the exhibition floor. Our days were filled with customer meetings,’’ said Randy Wellman, Automotive Business Manager – Americas, Huntsman.
While Pedro Empis, Commercial Director, Sameca, Produtos Quimicos, S.A. summed up the event “As usual, everyone that matters is here.”
‘’We had many good talks with experts and professionals due to many visitors at the fair,’’ added Johannes Hintermayer, Director Innovation + Merchandising at Schill + Seilacher.
The next UTECH Europe event will be held in 2015. The next Crain Communications show in the global polyurethanes calendar is PU China in Shenzhen, China 18-20 September 2012. Organised in association with MinMetals Corporation, PU China is the long-established PU event for the region. The last time PU China was held in Shenzhen, it attracted over 8,000 visitors.