While at Strategies in Light this week, there was much discussion, and many rumors, about the coronavirus and Light + Building. Light + Building has gone to great lengths to keep us safe at their show. You can read their current plan here.
Rumor: Mobile World Congress (MWC) cancelled their show in Barcelona and twice as large as Light + Building.
Fact: It is true that MWC was to be held in Barcelona between February 24th and 27th and it was cancelled. Key companies such as OSRAM, Ericsson, Intel, LG, Nokia, and Vodafone decided to withdraw. We have not heard of any key companies that have decided to pull out of L+B because of Coronavirus. We do understand that OSRAM has one booth that combines both OSRAM and OSRAM Opto and we understand that Zumtobel is not exhibiting, but both of those decisions were made long before the outbreak. Also, MWC typically pulls in 100,000 attendees compared to 200,000 for Light + Building.
MWC is more about components and Chinese suppliers are integral to that show. L+B is more about selling in Europe than buying in China. Hong Kong Lighting Fair (spring edition) is 6-9 APR and that is where most of the world goes for sourcing. Your humble editor would not be surprised if that one is cancelled.
Ambiente, the international consumer goods show, just concluded in Frankfurt. It is an annual show and in 2019 had 136,000 attendees, this year they had 108,000, so still a very successful show.
Rumor: Hall 10, which mainly houses Chinese Exhibitors will be closed and they won’t be allowed to exhibit.
Fact: As of this writing, L+B still shows 118 exhibitors in 10.1 and 434 in 10.2.
Rumor: None of the Chinese companies are coming because there are no flights from China to Frankfurt.
Fact: As of 10 FEB about 2/3 of the international flights from China have been halted, meaning there are still thousands of international flights each day.
We are told that many exhibitors from group pavilions from China in hall 10 will take personnel and people from their European distribution partners.
Rumor: One magazine in Turkey claims that 20 companies have pulled out because of the Coronavirus
Fact: You can read their article here. They make the claim that 20 companies have dropped out and that may be the case, but companies always drop out for a variety of reasons at the last minute. The article makes the claim that all 20 left due to coronarivurs, but I don’t see how they can draw that conclusion without contacting each company. To only lose 20 companies out of 2700 is insignificant.
Editor’s Opinion: We believe that Light + Building will go as planned and will be a successful show. There will be fewer Chinese exhibitors and fewer Chinese attendees but that may not be a bad thing. The show must go on…