Last month's imm cologne/LivingInteriors exhibition saw 1185 companies from 50 countries present their newest furniture and furnishings, attracting around 80,000 trade visitors from 128 countries – an increase of 4.8% on 2014's figures.
The proportion of trade visitors from abroad was 46%, a positive development that saw a significant increase in the number of visitors from Europe, primarily from the Netherlands, the UK, Spain and Austria. The event also registered a clear increase in the number of visitors from the US, China and India.
"This outcome shows that imm cologne is unmatched as a business event for the global furniture and furnishings industry," says Gerald Böse, president and CEO of organiser Koelnmesse.
"This is where the world comes together to do business, which offers a lot of new opportunities for export-oriented companies. At the same time, this fair duo has proved once again that business and creative inspiration are not mutually exclusive."
Dirk-Uwe Klaas, MD of the Federal Association of the German Furniture Industry (VDM), adds: "imm cologne was a wonderful furniture show and has got us off to a very successful start to the 2016 furniture year. With so many new products and ideas, innovations and great models in all price ranges, we are confident that the German furniture industry will achieve another increase in sales this year."
This was confirmed by Hans Strothoff, president of the Federal Association of German Furniture, Kitchens and Furnishing Retailers (BVDM): "This year’s imm cologne really stimulated a keen interest in furniture. Rarely has the mood in industry and trade been so positive as at this fair. Wherever you looked, only smiling faces and great optimism. imm cologne has really catapulted the industry into the new business year with a swing."
Including estimated figures for the last fair day, a total of 120,000 visitors (including consumers) attended the fair.
In addition to the products on show, the highlights of the 2016 event included Das Haus – Interiors on Stage, a walk-through simulation of a home, which was designed this year by Sebastian Herkner, and the Smart Home exhibition at LivingInteriors, where numerous companies presented solutions for a cleverly-networked home that are already available today.
Trends included cosiness and security, mid-century design and the use of natural materials.
The next imm cologne will be held from 16th-22nd January 2017 in Cologne, together with the LivingKitchen fair.