After a four-year hiatus, the international trade fair once again scored with high internationality and innovative solutions for the industry’s present challenges.
EMO Hannover 2023, which attracted a highly international audience from a wide range of industries, offered a glimpse into the promising possibilities for machine toolmakers.
A spectacular display of innovations, high levels of visitor interest from all over the world, and a great atmosphere in the halls… In the wake of a world transformed by the COVID-19 pandemic, these aspects were proof of why EMO Hannover 2023 was a resounding success.
“After the four-year break, the relaunch has been a huge success for EMO Hannover,” affirmed EMO Commissioner General Carl Martin Welcker.
The international trade fair was held at Hannover Fairground in Germany from September 18 to 23, 2023.
The trade fair’s strengths included the internationality of the exhibitors and visitors. Around 1,850 exhibitors attended, with roughly 70% coming from 45 different countries, including China, Italy, Taiwan, Switzerland and Japan. Of the approximately 92,000 trade visitors, 54% came from 130 countries.
Here, the five largest visitor countries were Turkey, China, the Netherlands, Italy and Poland.
Around one-third of the trade visitors came from Asia.
More than half of the visitors at EMO were attending for the first time, the exhibition company claimed.
This dovetailed nicely with the exhibitors’ goal of attracting new customer business. Dr. Karsten Röttger, CEO at Ecoroll AG of Germany, said: “Many visitors became aware of us for the first time.
They hadn’t even considered the possibilities of mechanical surface finishing.
Our tools allow them to meet the increasing product quality requirements, but above all the higher demand for sustainable products.”
Around one-fifth of the exhibitors were also at the event for the first time. Representing this group, Jörg Rommelfanger, Head of ABB’s Robotics Division, Germany, said: “This year’s EMO provided the ideal platform for showcasing our latest technologies and solutions for the industry for the first time.
These included a machine loading cell specially designed for the fast and automated removal of randomly arranged workpieces. There was tremendous interest, and the numerous conversations and demonstrations we conducted were fruitful and inspiring.”
According to the visitor survey, 30% of visitors gave “obtaining information about innovations and trends” as their top priority. A further goal was finding concrete solutions for their specific problems. And, EMO Hannover 2023 provided a perfect platform for top-class technical innovations. “We saw everything here for the future of production: new solutions for automation, for networking within the factory and for sustainable production.
When digitalization finds its way into the factory, there is no end to the potential for new solutions and increased efficiency. This was impressively demonstrated by the exhibitors. And there was a positive mood at the event, despite the tense economic situation,” said Welcker. Dr. Matthias Klein, CSO of the Emag Group, added: “We have seen an overwhelming level of interest in the innovative solutions and machines of the Emag Group.
In particular, our solutions presented for machining electric vehicle powertrain components met with great interest. Overall, we are more than satisfied with the response from the market.”
The exhibition showcased a diverse array of technologies, ranging from imposing double-column CNC machines to intricate miniature cutting tools, from IoT-based cutting tool fluids to intelligent design and manufacturing software.
The exhibits also featured tool holders sporting innovative geometries and tool presetters equipped with advanced tool management systems.
Among the plethora of cutting-edge technologies displayed were grinding machines, Coordinate Measuring Machines (CMMs), and collaborative robots (cobots). “Cobots are continuing to enjoy rising popularity in manufacturing, especially in smaller companies that are now struggling to find staff,” explained Nils Tersteegen, Marketing Manager at Japanese vendor Fanuc.
It is important for exhibitors to be seen at EMO Hannover, to showcase their offerings and to demonstrate competence.
EMO is therefore a trade fair for executives and decision-makers from the mechanical engineering, automotive and supplier industries, metal processing, precision mechanics, optics, and the aerospace industry, among others.
Almost 60% of the visitors comprised executives or those from the top management. Just under half have decision-making authority for purchasing and procurement. Indeed, half of the trade visitors actually stated that they came to EMO with concrete investment plans. On average, these visitors planned to invest just under 3 million euros. More than a quarter said they had placed orders at the fair.
Stephan Nell, CEO of the United Grinding Group from Switzerland, said: “The number of leads is currently at the same level as in 2019. Some machine contracts were also signed directly at the trade show booth.”
Another quarter of visitors said that they intended to place orders after the trade show, according to the survey.
“EMO Hannover has once again confirmed and consolidated its position as the world’s leading trade fair for production technology,” Welcker concluded. He is looking forward to the next event, which will doubtless attract even more exhibitors in two years’ time once the economy has improved. In 2025, it will be held from September 22 to 27.
EMO Hannover 2023 was an exceptionally well-organised event that not only showcased the latest developments in the machine tool industry but also highlighted the shifting dynamics of global markets. India’s rise as a major player in the industry was a recurring theme, generating hope and enthusiasm among exhibitors and visitors alike.
The organisers put together a truly remarkable show that left an indelible mark on the industry’s future. EMO Hannover 2023 was not just an exhibition, it was a glimpse into the exciting possibilities that lie ahead for the world of machine tools.
Opportunities in India: The excitement surrounding India was palpable, as global companies looked to this emerging powerhouse with newfound optimism. The Indian presence had significantly increased, with twice the number of exhibitors compared to the previous edition, and they occupied double the exhibition space. For instance, ACE Micromatic Group, India’s largest machine tool conglomerate, had an impressive presence with four booths at the show. It was a testament to India’s growing influence in the industry.
Industry 4.0: An interesting shift towards Industry 4.0 concepts was seen as companies proudly showcased innovative solutions and machines integrated with cutting-edge technology. Conversations buzzed about the potential for Industry 5.0, hinting at the ongoing evolution and transformation within the industry itself.
Integration of AR and VR: The integration of Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) was another intriguing aspect. Many CAD/CAM companies incorporated these technologies into their offerings, providing a glimpse into the future of design, prototyping, and production.
Sustainability: A striking trend that pervaded the event was a heightened focus on sustainability and carbon neutrality. Numerous companies unveiled innovative green solutions designed to reduce their carbon
footprint, underscoring the industry’s commitment to environmental responsibility. The Future of Sustainability in Production was high on the agenda for 68% of visitors.
Connectivity: Another focus was on connectivity. The main emphasis here was on the open exchange of data – based on OPC UA, for example. This is the basis for the Companion Specification OPC UA for Machine Tools under the UMATI umbrella. Retrieving large amounts of data from digital controls without affecting the process was a key factor here.
UMATI (Universal Machine Technology Interface): Introduced in 2019, this initiative has come a long way, with numerous world-leading companies embracing the concept. It showcased the collaborative spirit of the industry, as organisations worked together to pave the way for a more interconnected and efficient future.
Start-up pavilion: A plethora of innovative solutions and concepts held the promise of reshaping the industry. It was a testament to the entrepreneurial spirit and forward-thinking mindset that thrives within the
machine tool community. Many young engineers from the machine tool industry showcased their innovative products and concepts. Interestingly, there were special subsidies for start-ups at EMO.