ITALY: After a four-year hiatus, Europe celebrated the return of the Mostra Convegno Expocomfort show last week but the attendance was 44% down on the previous event in 2018.
The 2020 event was an early casualty of the coronavirus pandemic and this year’s show had already been postponed from March in the hope that a later date would avoid lingering covid concerns and restrictions.
However, the final show figures from the organiser reveal an attendance of 90,735 at the end of its four-day run at the Fiera Milano – a significant drop on the reported attendance of 160,000 at the last event in 2018. The 1,581 exhibitors was also down around 34% on the 2,388 companies who took space in 2018.
Despite this, Massimiliano Pierini, MD of Reed Exhibitions Italia, hailed the event as “possibly” the most exciting ever. “It has taken on the value of being the one of restart and enthusiasm to return to in-person events of this magnitude. It has involved speakers, institutions and all those working alongside the companies who actively participated, testifying to the need to create culture and enterprise around the domestic and work environments; now more than ever, the focus of our attention,” he said.
While the industry is welcoming back the live events, covid-19 continues to have a dampening effect on show numbers. The AHR Expo in Las Vegas in February experienced a similar drop in attendance figures.