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History

1947

Establishment of the Deutsche Messe- und Ausstellungs-AG exhibition company
Deutsche Messe AG was founded on 16 August 1947 as Deutsche Messe- und Ausstellungs- AG (German Trade Fair and Exhibition Company) with a registered share capital of 1.2 million reichsmarks. This was an initiative of the British occupying forces in consultation with the commander-in-chief of the American zone.
The objective was to get Germany back on its feet economically by revving up its export business. After a 21-day run resulted in the signing of 1,934 export deals worth $31.6 million, the "Hannover Export Fair" was deemed a success.

1950

The first foreign exhibitors take part in the "German Industrial Fair"
At first, almost everyone was skeptical about Hannover's chances of overtaking Leipzig - the former "exhibition capital" of the defunct German Reich. But in the years that fol-lowed, HANNOVER MESSE became a symbol of Germany's economic miracle. Back in 1948, the first telephone connection was established between the trade fair company and New York. In 1950, the first exhibitors from abroad took part in the renamed "Deutsche Industrie-Messe" ("German Industrial Fair") and, in 1961, the term "HANNOVER MESSE" was officially adopted. It soon became a renowned, world-class event for cross-communication between technology and industry.

1985

Launching of the subsidiary "HANNOVER MESSE international" (HMI)
Initially set up in 1981 as a business division of the parent company, HANNOVER MESSES INTERNATIONAL (HFI) was incorporated in 1985 as an independent, limited liability company. It designs and runs its own international industrial and trade fairs abroad. As a hands-on company, it is responsible for organizing industrial group pavilions, information counters and special shows at overseas trade fairs and exhibitions.

1986

Separation of CeBIT and HANNOVER MESSE

1986 Since cleaving off CeBIT from HANNOVER MESSE in 1986, both shows have become the trendsetters for industry and the flagship tradeshows among the many different trade fairs and exhibitions staged by DMAG in the state capital. Other events which regularly take place at the Hannover Exhibition Grounds are also recognized as world leaders in their respective fields.

1987

Company renamed "Deutsche Messe AG"
Since 1987, the company has traded under the name of Deutsche Messe AG.

2000

Expo 2000
For Deutsche Messe AG, the period from 1990 to 2000 was dominated by some major changes to the region's infrastructure, with new investment in the exhibition complex alone totaling some DM 1.6 billion. These improvements were all designed to prepare for hosting the world exhibition, EXPO 2000, which was supremely well run at the Hannover Exhibition Grounds. Since the end of EXPO 2000 on 31 October 2000, Deutsche Messe AG is the owner of the world's most modern and extensive exhibition facility. With its stunning architecture, the Hannover tradeshow complex offers international exhibitors and attendees an ideal forum for indepth and effective business networking.

2005

Highest volume of trade fair business in company history
With a total of 11 international trade shows staged at the its home base in Hannover, Germany, 2005 will go down as the biggest exhibition year in company history. Apart from a strongly customer-oriented approach, Deutsche Messe AG pursues a concerted policy of expanding and reshaping its facilities and events to reflect the state of international markets, which has resulted in the company being ranked among the world's top exhibition organizers. Along with fortifying and expanding its network of trade shows in Hannover, Deutsche Messe AG is also dedicated to increasing its share of business abroad. Through its foreign subsidiaries, Deutsche Messe AG helps export-oriented enterprises realize additional growth potential. In all its activities, Deutsche Messe AG oper-ates on a solid and independent basis, receiving no public funding.

2008

Joint Venture with Fiera Milano
Intent on consolidating its strategic orientation to foreign markets, Deutsche Messe now entered a joint venture with Fiera Milano, Europe’s second leading trade fair organizer. The two companies hoped to gain a foothold in the growth markets of Russia, China and India, and expected to see their market position improve through their joint efforts and shared know-how.

Quality not quantity – CeBIT changes course
The world’s leading trade fair for the digital industry now pressed the reset button and launched a new program. Lectures and specialist events added a new quality to the trade fair and accounted for a further increase in the proportion of professional visitors. CeBIT was shortened from seven to six days. Environmental issues featured for the first time on the trade fair agenda as the keynote theme “Green IT”. The introduction of new content proved to be a good move. Over six days more than 10 million business talks were held, countless investment decisions initiated and orders concluded.

Best business results in company history
With 106 different events attracting over 39,000 exhibitors and a total of 3.22 million visitors for the year, Deutsche Messe is up among the world leaders as an organizer of leading international trade fairs.

2009

Go-ahead for expansion of SNIEC
In spite of the world economic crisis, activities geared to further developing the Shanghai New International Expo Center (SNIEC) in China went ahead. After completion of the building work at the end of 2010 the venue will offer a display area of 200,000 square meters – plus a 130,000 square meter open-air site. Since the facility first opened in 2001 it has emerged as China’s most important trade show and exhibition venue.

Chinese subsidiary celebrates its first 10 years
Founded by Deutsche Messe in 1999, Hannover Fairs Shanghai Ltd., which now operates under the name Hannover Milano Fairs Shanghai Ltd., can now look back on 10 successful years. During this period it has made a significant impact on the Chinese exhibition and trade fair market, and now stages up to 15 shows each year in China’s major centers of business and industry concentrated around Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu and Guangzhou.

Deutsche Messe steps up commitment to Japan
In 2009 Deutsche Messe stepped up its involvement in the Japanese market with the establishment of a new local subsidiary. Deutsche Messe Japan K.K. began by intensifying efforts to recruit exhibitors and visitors for the various trade fairs staged in Hannover and developing a network of contacts with major Japanese companies.

2010

Foreign business expansion and restructuring
Deutsche Messe added 13 new foreign trade fairs to its portfolio of trade fairs outside of Germany. These included the first HANNOVER MESSE franchises in Moscow, organized by Deutsche Messe in collaboration with a local partner. The events on foreign markets proved highly successful, and in order to strengthen the company’s position in the competitive international market the different areas of responsibility were more clearly demarcated: henceforth the subsidiary Hannover Messe International (HMI) – which in future would operate under the name Hannover Fairs International GmbH – was made responsible for all international exhibitions and trade fairs staged outside Germany. This reorganization gave fresh impetus to Deutsche Messe’s growth strategy.
 
Convention Center wins "Location Award"
The best venue for exciting major events: experienced event organizers chose the Convention Center as the winner of the 2010 Location Award. The jury was particularly impressed by the flexibility and scope of the venue, the quality of service, the facilities and their communications infrastructure.


Extensive event portfolio scores outstanding results
With over 50 events during the year – ranging from a medical congress to open-air concerts and sporting events – the Hannover Exhibition Center attracted a steady stream of visitors. In fact Deutsche Messe recorded 2010 as its most successful year for congresses, conventions, events and special functions. One particular highlight was the concert by AC/DC, attended by 80,000 fans who danced the night away around the Hermes Tower and under the Expo Canopy.

2011

Deutsche Messe goes east; southern part of the Hannover venue revamped
The expansion of international business generated strong growth. In 2011 Deutsche Messe staged 108 events in Germany and other countries – more than ever before. The company's employees were distributed across more than 100 countries, organized in five German and eight foreign subsidiaries. The list of foreign subsidiaries included Deutsche Messe RUS (established in 2011), which spearheaded business expansion in Eastern Europe in the following years. Hannover was a hive of activity. Hall 10 at the southern end of the exhibition grounds was demolished. Completed in 1958, this multi-story building served as a landmark for visitors arriving at the site. It was used primarily during HANNOVER MESSE in its earlier years, above all for the presentation of lamps and light fittings. Hall 10 made its last major appearance at EXPO 2000, where the Dutch artist Lily van der Stokker decorated the facades with pink ornaments. The hall was superseded by a new entrance zone equipped with a state-of-the-art visitor entry system. Since 2011 the southern entrance has boasted the new 35-meter high Hermes Column. Fifteen large dichroic glass panels shimmer blue and yellow depending on the wavelength and the angle of incidence of the ambient light. Transparent solar modules generate the necessary power. At night more than 1,300 LEDs illuminate the stylized Hermes emblem.

Deutsche Messe acquires a stake in event it AG
This move was designed to strengthen the position of Deutsche Messe in the conference business segment. With its portfolio of organizational, planning and on-site support services, this new subsidiary is the perfect complement to Deutsche Messe – above all with regard to electronic visitor management. In 2014 event it launched a new web portal and mobile app. This software platform assists exhibitors with their lead management, evaluates business cards and streamlines follow-up activities.

2012

A watershed year – foreign business a driving force behind revenue growth
Deutsche Messe continued to perform well. 2012 proved to be a watershed year – due largely to the growth program initiated in 2009, aimed at unlocking new sources of revenue and profit. The exceptionally dynamic growth in foreign business made a positive impact on profits. China and Turkey were two major sources of revenue growth. In Turkey, Deutsche Messe acquired the remaining shares in Hannover-Messe Sodeks Fuarcilik A.S., which organizes the heating, ventilation and air conditioning fair ISK-SODEX in Istanbul. This was followed by the purchase of the remaining stake in CeBIT Bilişim Eurasia. In both cases Deutsche Messe succeeded in strengthening its market position. Trade fair business in Hannover also continued to expand. Formerly a special display at HANNOVER MESSE, Metropolitan Solutions soon became a standalone event taking place in parallel with the world’s largest industrial technology show. Metropolitan Solutions focuses on solutions for tomorrow’s megacities.

Public transport strike – the Red Dot is reactivated
Due to a public transport strike during CeBIT, Deutsche Messe decided to revive the “Red Dot Campaign” of days gone by and asked Hannover’s residents to once again help transport exhibitors to and from the exhibition grounds. Numerous motorists displayed a red dot behind their car windscreens to indicate that they were willing to pick up passengers.

Deutsche Messe acquires a majority stake in spring Messe Management GmbH
Spring Messe Management organizes specialist trade fairs in the field of human resources (HR) management, professional learning, corporate health, job and careers and the public sector.
Together with this new subsidiary, Deutsche Messe now ranks as Europe’s largest organizer of HR fairs.

2013

Highest revenues in the past 10 years
The company’s growth strategy is paying dividends: in 2013 Deutsche Messe reported the highest sales revenues and profits since 2003. The company organized a record number of fairs in foreign markets and achieved the highest foreign sales revenues in its history. In addition, Deutsche Messe had the highest volume of orders on its books since its inception.This mirrored the corporate strategy of Deutsche Messe, which was aimed at maximizing profitability and growth. As a result the company was able to fund the investment in the new Hall 19/20 from its own resources.
The recipe for success and growth was apparent: to identify and implement new ideas at the earliest possible stage.

Internet of Things and Industry 4.0 at home in Hannover
Deutsche Messe was the first trade fair company to respond to the two new mega trends Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things by putting the spotlight on digitalization, at both HANNOVER MESSE and CeBIT. Under the programmatic heading “Integrated Industry” HANNOVER MESSE now focused on tomorrow’s smart factories.

2014

Digital economy – digital trade fairs
Thanks to the ongoing enhancement of established trade fair concepts, Deutsche Messe succeeded in transforming HANNOVER MESSE, CeBIT, CeMAT and LIGNA into driving forces behind the digital revolution – a precondition for sustained and profitable corporate growth. Digital technology was also transforming the trade fair industry. In 2014 the web pages of Deutsche Messe and its trade fairs attracted seven million visitors. This positive echo is attributable to the company’s strong branding and high-profile presence in search engines, social networks and industry portals.
Deutsche Messe is committed to maintaining and enhancing its digital portfolio. The development and application of digital services is now the joint responsibility of two specialist subsidiaries. Established in 2009, Deutsche Messe Interactive (DMI) provides digital lead generation services for exhibitors. In addition, DMI compiles the electronic exhibitor and product directories for trade fairs such as HANNOVER MESSE, CeBIT, LIGNA, DOMOTEX and BIOTECHNICA. The subsidiary event it specializes in electronic visitor management. In 2014 event it launched a new web portal and mobile app. This software platform assists exhibitors with their lead management, evaluates business cards and streamlines follow-up activities.

Deutsche Messe in Indonesia
Deutsche Messe has gained a foothold in this new market in its role as the operator of Indonesia Convention Exhibition (ICE) in Jakarta. With 247 million inhabitants Indonesia is South East Asia’s largest economy and, together with the BRIC countries, is one of the world’s major growth markets.

2015

Building for the future – a modular concept for the exhibition grounds
A major step in the modernization program for the exhibition grounds (commenced in 2012) was the completion of Hall 19/20 in the spring of 2015 – after a construction period of only 18 months. Hall 19/20 was officially inaugurated at the beginning of July by the Chairman of the Supervisory Board (Lower Saxony's Minister of Economic Affairs Olaf Lies), the Mayor of Hannover (Stefan Schostok) and other members of the Supervisory Board and the Managing Board. The hall was designed by the leading firm of architects gmp – Gerkan, Marg and Partners, which had already been responsible for other construction projects at the Hannover exhibition grounds. Hall 19/20 is part of an extensive site development plan which the Managing Board of Deutsche Messe submitted to the Supervisory Board in 2012. The goal is to enhance the modernity, functionality and flexibility of the exhibition grounds in order to maintain long-term competitiveness. The aim is to create and refurbish around 100,000 square meters of indoor exhibition space by the year 2032. An average of €20 million per year has been earmarked for this purpose.
With the renewal of the exhibition grounds Deutsche Messe is responding to the changing requirements of the marketplace. The number of international flagship fairs remains stable, while on the other hand small and medium-sized fairs, conferences and corporate events offer significant growth potential. In 2014 the Hannover Exhibition Center hosted more than 50 major events, including the Annual General meetings of Volkswagen and MAN. Hall 19/20 (which cost less than the originally planned €54 million) boasts a modular design. Numerous events can be hosted simultaneously. For daytime light shows and other requirements, the entire exhibition area can be darkened. The hall features modern conference facilities, a restaurant and a bistro with an open kitchen (ideal for live cooking demonstrations).

Glenn Greenwald and Edward Snowden at CeBIT Global Conferences
This was one of the highlights at the 2015 CeBIT Global Conferences. The journalist and “gatekeeper” Glenn Greenwald (in the words of CGC moderator Brent Goff) appeared live on stage in Hannover, while the whistleblower Edward Snowden spoke via satellite from Moscow. 40,000 viewers worldwide watched the live stream.

Metropolitan Solutions moves to Berlin
In 2015 Deutsche Messe staged the international smart city/green city conference Metropolitan Solutions for the first time in the City Cube in Berlin. The aim is to facilitate direct contacts between urban technology providers and decision-makers in the public sector and the political community. Metropolitan Solutions is an integral part of Berlin’s smart city strategy, which has attracted worldwide attention.

2016

USA as Partner Country at HANNOVER MESSE, with President Obama in attendance
Deutsche Messe’s biggest highlight of 2016 was in April, when President Barack Obama officially opened HANNOVER MESSE together with Chancellor Angela Merkel. The United States of America was the Partner Country of the world’s most foremost trade fair for industrial technology. Never before had Deutsche Messe hosted such a high-ranking guest at one of its events. The media echo was enormous, and the global renown enjoyed by HANNOVER MESSE and Deutsche Messe went up a notch. Despite stringent security measures on site and throughout the city of Hannover, the U.S. President’s visit met with huge enthusiasm and triggered a palpably upbeat spirit. In the end, everyone was thrilled: the 500 American exhibitors and the many other enterprises with business agendas in North America. The USA is committed to revitalizing its industrial base, and the country’s factories need to be set up to handle the challenges of the 4th industrial revolution. HANNOVER MESSE is the ideal place to seek and find the necessary technology.

2017

Deutsche Messe celebrates its 70th anniversary
2017 marks the 70th anniversary of Deutsche Messe AG. Over the past seven decades, the company has brought together millions of people at events around the globe, thus paving the way for international business. Thanks to its focus on capital goods shows, consumer goods exhibitions and human resources fairs and a globalization and digitalization strategies, Deutsche Messe enjoys international acclaim. Its service-driven approach is highly valued by exhibitors and visitors alike. The company’s anniversary motto – “70 years of showcasing the future” – emphasizes what has been its guiding principle since its inception on 18 August 1947: proactively shaping tomorrow’s world.

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