Final Report: More international flair – rising attendance: 145,000 visitors from 133 nations come to Cologne
“It’s the business, stupid” – business that brings the worldwide fitness industry to FIBO in Cologne. This is how a club operator from Miami summed it up and he could not have described the situation more aptly: registering trade visitors from 133 nations (previous year: 121) FIBO impressively underscored its status as the biggest and most important meeting point for the industry worldwide where trends are presented and where in excess of EUR two billion are invested. “Here’s the beef,” says the man from Florida with a grin.
Purchasing power exceeds EUR 2 billion
Purchases quickly add up when – like this year – 145,000 visitors come to Cologne, i.e. 2,000 visitors more than in the previous year. These included more than 84,000 trade visitors travelling from all parts of the world to browse innovations, sound out the market and do “big business” equipping their clubs, facilities and practices. About one in three trade visitors came with concrete intentions to buy and concluded the corresponding purchasing contracts at FIBO. The average purchasing volume amounted to EUR 77,000 – and EUR 125 on average for private visitors.
Most important marketplace for the industry worldwide
“This makes FIBO the world’s most important marketplace for the industry,” says FIBO boss Silke Frank working for organiser Reed Exhibitions, adding that: “The efforts aimed at further boosting the business-like feel at FIBO by making it more international, have fully paid off. The list of nations represented in Cologne is impressive. FIBO ranks higher year on year.” The line-up of nations spans the whole globe: ranging from Australia to China, from Thailand and India to Brazil and the USA, all of Europe from Sweden to Sicily and from there via Kenya to South Africa.
Fully booked: 1,105 exhibitors occupy all available exhibition areas
The trade show’s truly international flair – paired with top decision-making expertise – was also felt by the 1,105 exhibitors who had travelled from 49 countries to the Rhine occupying every bit of the 160,000 m² of available exhibition space. Over half the companies attending – 57% to be precise – came from abroad, thereby further underlining FIBO’s role as the No. 1 international trade show. Those countries considered the pacemakers in the fitness market can be found at the very top of the exhibitor rankings: Germany (478 exhibitors), China (103), the USA (52), the Netherlands (44), Poland (43) as well as Great Britain (37), Italy (36) and Spain (27).
“In the wake of our global strategy with FIBO events held in China, the USA, South Africa and Mexico we are also mobilising international customers recruiting them for FIBO in Cologne,” says Hans-Joachim Erbel, CEO of organiser Reed Exhibitions Deutschland, summing up the results of FIBO the last day of which – 7 April – incidentally coincided with World Health Day. “At the same time,” Erbel stresses, “the overall conditions are right: the investment climate is good, the market continues to develop dynamically and people’s willingness to spend money on their own health and fitness is rising.”
CEOs from throughout the world at the “Davos” of the fitness industry
This assessment is shared by the top representatives of the sector. They now traditionally travel to Cologne the day before FIBO opens and meet at the European Health & Fitness Forum (EHFF). This year’s sixth edition has finally made it the “Davos” (i.e. home of the World Economic Forum) of this industry. The event for executives organised by the European association EuropeActive was completely sold out hosting 500 participants. CEOs from all world leading producers of fitness equipment and multi-national gym operators came to Cologne.
Europe-wide sales in the industry stand at EUR 27.2 billion
The forum participants looked to the future with optimism although many of them critically viewed the pressure on prices that club operators are exposed to. However, the overall situation on the market sees continued positive growth. With EUR 27.2 billion sales generated in this industry Europe has become the world’s biggest fitness market, now ranking ahead of the USA. 62.2 million Europeans are members of a club. This is 3.5% more than last year – as is shown by the “European Health & Fitness Market Report 2019” produced by EuropeActive and Deloitte and traditionally published as part of the EHFF to kick off FIBO.
Germany is biggest European market
Germany has also seen another rise in the number of gym members. A total of 11.09 million people (10.61 million in the previous year) are members of one of the country’s 9,343 fitness clubs. This means almost one in seven Germans belong to a club – say the basic parameters of the German Fitness Industry 2019, which are surveyed by the DSSV and will be disclosed under the auspices of FIBO from 2020.
The next FIBO will be held at Cologne Exhibition Centre from 2 to 5 April 2020.
Find up-to-date downloadable images and additional information at www.fibo.com.
Note: FIBO visitor, exhibitor and floor space figures are calculated and certified according to the uniform definitions published by FKM – German Society for Voluntary Control of Fair and Exhibition Statistics.
“FIBO is a very important platform for us. In our view it is THE leading trade show. It’s getting more and more obvious that its B2B area is becoming increasingly international. Our customers even come here all the way from Japan because they think it’s important to take part in FIBO. In 2019 the show went very well for us. Over the first two days trade visitor attendance was very good, but Saturday is now also increasingly developing into a business day. Some of our customers even prefer the Saturday – a positive development.”
Eckbert Ganns, Country Manager Germany, Austria, Switzerland, LIFE FITNESS EUROPE GMBH
“FIBO is the leading show for the fitness sector on a global scale. This is where innovations are launched; and above all it has a very special atmosphere because people live and breathe fitness and lifestyle here. For us as exhibitors and the whole team FIBO is a fun place to be.”
Jannes Schellhas, CEO of FTC Functional Training Company GmbH
“FIBO 2019 has been our first trade show participation in Germany. In the four days here, we have launched our product innovation Rush, presented Mick Schumacher as an athlete in the Under Armour family and invited over 30 European influencers and more than 500 end users to share a premium work-out experience. We are highly satisfied because our concept worked out – in terms of PR, Social Media and Retail.”
Nicolas Schwartz, Marketing Germany Under Armour
"Once again we can say that FIBO has been very successful as the most important international event for Matrix. Every year we think we can't do more than that, and then we see more visitors from all over the world coming to our stand. And they were particularly enthusiastic about our Group Training and Functional concepts, which we developed for the first time for the older target group. There was also a real run on our new Plate Loaded Glute Trainer from the Magnum series, which clearly reflects the hype around the "Gluteus Maximus". Many customers also took the opportunity to inform themselves about the updates and extensions of the matrix "Connected Solutions"."
Jürgen Aschauer, Business Development Director Johnson Health Tech. GmbH
“We are extremely happy. This was our first appearance as Aciso. The new company fuses Greinwalder und Partner with the Injoy and Elements brands. This alliance met with strong interest in the industry. The response from both national and international existing and new customers from political, media and association spheres was magnificent. The quality of the trade visitors, in particular, was high and we had many good discussions. FIBO was a huge success for us. This is why we have already booked a considerably bigger stand for next year.”
Ulrike Schönfelder, Aciso Corporate Communication
“EMS continues to be a top topic in the industry. To us FIBO is an important platform to emphasise this. In this connection our exhibition concept has also paid off again. The footfall at our stand was very good and we are very satisfied.”
Jürgen Decker, CEO miha bodytec
“Our target group are physiotherapists and we welcomed a large number of them to our stand. The international origin of visitors has increased noticeably which is why the quality of visitors can be rated as very high overall. And the footfall was also right: the trade show already kicked off promisingly with two very busy trade visitor days. And this trend also persisted over the weekend. For us this was a successful FIBO 2019.”
Michael Tron, Marketing Manager |CMO SVG Medizinsysteme GmbH & Co. KG
“FIBO is very international and focused. It covers 100% of our target group. This is not the case at any other trade show, and this is also why these are the most important dates for us every year. The mix is just perfect.”
Stefan Bartenschlager, CEO Dynostics
“We sent out many invitations and made appointments in the run-up to the event and this work has paid off: all of them came and we had excellent discussions. Especially on Saturday we welcomed many physiotherapists here but there was no shortage of classic fitness leads either. This means the level of FIBO was even higher than last year’s event. We are very satisfied.”
Markus Hodyas, Marketing Director & Global Sales Manager, ERGO-FIT GmbH & Co. KG
“The trade show was very well attended. We registered very high numbers of visitors ourselves, our products went down extremely well and we can look forward to many new customers after FIBO. Wellness and beauty are of increasing importance at clubs. This was reflected by the very high quality of leads we generated especially on the trade visitor days. This allowed us to even exceed the good results we posted last year.”
Marco Jakobs, CEO Ergoline (JK-Gruppe)
“Since the borders between fitness, wellness and physiotherapy are also increasingly blurring at FIBO we not only feel very much at home here – we also meet with our target groups. The conversations were very interesting and this is why we are very happy.”
Wietske Lubisch, Sales Director Wellsystem (JK international)
“FIBO was a big success for us. We are thrilled with the quantity and quality of trade visitors and already look forward to FIBO 2020 very much – when we will be in Hall 9.”
Philipp Roesch-Schlanderer, CEO, eGym GmbH
“We already took part last year and also succeeded in building the image of our sickness fund here this year. FIBO is a perfect forum for doing this because we can get many people enthusiastic about our sports offering. And this is a success for us. At the same time, we also made contact with numerous exhibitors and established new “interfaces”. We will definitely be back in 2020.”
Adriano Mura, Regional Sales Manager at Knappschaft
“Sales are right and we leave the trade show with a very good feeling. We had many visitors here who took note of our brand and also associated it with our headquarters in Cologne. This was our key mission accomplished, and this is why we are very pleased.”
Christian Krüger, FIBO Coordinator at Karstadt-Sport Cologne
“For us FIBO again proved a resounding success. We managed to reach our three focal target groups – personal trainers, physiotherapists and this year also club operators with our XBeat.”
Dominic Bessler, power of attorney/ Sales Manager XBody Training
“Our reach at FIBO is simply tremendous. We address entirely different target groups here. We are represented at the trade show every year. To us it would be inconceivable to not be here. This platform is incredibly important for us.”
Tobias Decker, Head of Customer Service and Logistics Ironmaxx
“FIBO allows us to convey our philosophy, introduce new products and invite visitors to taste them. This goes down very well. At the same time, it allows us to meet our distributors in person and this is very important to us.”
Andras Toth, Product Specialist Biotech USA
“FIBO is unique. Everyone showcases their innovations here – making the trade show the key meeting point for this industry.”
Manuela Mählich, Marketing Manager Weider
“At FIBO everyone dealing with fitness is represented. We make contact with many people and the enthusiasm is enormous.”
Philip Kleiner, CEO Essential Eight
“We feel very much at home here and our staff are thrilled as well. We have considerably expanded our exhibition space compared to last year and intend to double it next year.”
Kerstin Cramer, Head of Marketing YBPN
“FIBO has maintained last year’s level thereby fulfilling our expectations. The high number and quality of visitors continued at this year’s trade show. This is why we are happy and would like to see the show remain as broad-based as it currently is.”
Thomas Röhrle, CEO, Bodywave Konzept und Beratung GmbH