Dr. Jochen Köckler is Chairman of the Managing Board of Deutsche Messe AG based in Hannover, Germany. He was appointed to the Board on April 1, 2012, and took over the chairmanship on July 1, 2017. Jochen Köckler also manages the global Industry, Energy & Logistics division within HANNOVER MESSE and its worldwide industry events as well as the business unit IT & Services and Finance & Legal.
IEN D-A-CH: After a two-year pandemic break, HANNOVER MESSE will take place again as a live event from May 30 to June 2. What can visitors expect and what is on offer for those who, for various reasons, cannot yet visit the trade fair again?
Dr. Jochen Köckler: The pandemic led us to focus more on the digitalization of our own products. We learned many lessons from last year's digital HANNOVER MESSE that we have built into the 2022 event. For example, our networking tool enables all trade fair participants to connect digitally in advance of the event, exchange ideas and arrange on-site or virtual appointments. We will livestream all forums, so visitors who cannot be there in person can still actively participate in the fair. We have also developed virtual guided tours for precisely this target group – digital visitors can experience the exhibits and highlights without being at the exhibition center.
The high level of internationality among visitors and exhibitors has always been one of the special, positive characteristics of HANNOVER MESSE. What is the status of exhibitors this year and what do you expect from visitors?
We will experience an international show again this year, both on the exhibitor and on the visitor side. We have received a large number of registrations from Italy, Turkey and, of course, Portugal. The USA and South Korea are also well represented, and we expect many exhibitors from France, Spain and Poland.
The lead theme of the fair is “Industrial Transformation”, which has been topical for the last few years but currently gained momentum from developments such as the unending pandemic, threats of disruption to industrial supply chains and the Ukraine war and associated threats. What impulses do you expect that can emanate from the trade fair and exhibitors in the field of industrial production?
In view of the current global political situation, the topics at HANNOVER MESSE are more relevant than ever. At the core, it is about ensuring security of supply and growth in a dynamically changing world – politically, ecologically and economically – and at the same time counteracting climate change. Innovative technologies will play a key role here.
What about decarbonization, hydrogen and the circular economy? These are also well-established, important topics for HANNOVER MESSE.
When it comes to CO2-neutral production and energy security in Europe, renewable energies and green hydrogen play a key role. Many companies are already moving forward with concrete solutions, including corporations such as Bosch or Siemens, but also medium-sized companies.
Due to the current energy crisis, the topic of hydrogen is becoming increasingly important at HANNOVER MESSE. We have offered the largest European platform for the hydrogen and fuel cell industry there for years. In Hannover, more than 200 companies present solutions for a sustainable energy supply using hydrogen from renewable energies, including Iberdrola, Saint Gobain, Emerson, ElringKlinger, Plug Power, Siemens, Phoenix Contact, Enapter, Bosch, Hexagon Purus, Nel Hydrogen, Hydrogenious, and GP Joule.
In view of the scarcity of raw materials, the topic of circular economy is also becoming increasingly important at HANNOVER MESSE.
In the past, the supporting program of the trade fair and the accompanying congress events were an important starting point for advancing topics and discussions. What can visitors expect this year, online and offline?
For the first time, we will stream all forums live so that all visitors, whether on site or digitally, can watch the individual lectures. The exhibition center features four stages. The Main Stage in the H'Up studio hosts economic policy discussions. The Industry 4.0 Stage in Hall 8 covers topics such as automation and sensor technology, cloud and infrastructure, data analysis and management, digital platforms, robotics, IT security, AI and machine learning, and the circular economy.
On the Energy 4.0 stage in Hall 12, experts discuss the latest trends and solutions for an energy-intelligent future. The tech transfer stage in Hall 2 fosters exchange between science, business and politics and highlights the latest projects in applied industrial research. The focus is on the direct exchange of information, successful technology transfer and discussing solutions to the challenges of tomorrow's industry.
With the choice of Partner Country Portugal, the trade fair has again made an interesting choice. How many exhibitors from the partner country are expected to be there and which topics will be in the foreground?
At HANNOVER MESSE 2022, Portugal presents itself as an international technology partner and encourages investments from abroad. We can learn from Portugal in many areas. For example, around 80 percent of the electricity in Portugal already comes from renewable energies. The country is interesting for many international startups. In Hannover, more than 100 Portuguese exhibitors will present their technologies and processes in a central pavilion and in three thematic pavilions in the areas of Engineered Parts & Solutions, Energy Solutions and Digital Ecosystems.
Kay Petermann, IEN D-A-CH
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