A strong half-century: NürnbergMesse turns 50
Nuremberg, 9 April 2024 – “From 0 to 100, from a regional exhibition startup in 1974 to a global player with an established position among the top 15 exhibition companies worldwide!” That’s how Peter Ottmann, CEO NürnbergMesse Group, summarizes the success story of the past 50 years and the development of the company’s own exhibition portfolio, which now extends to more than 100 in-house and partner events in 12 countries.  A “Spirit to Grow” – ideas, partnerships and the joy of creating meeting points and platforms for industries of all kinds support and encourage the development of Nuremberg as a major site for trade fairs and its national and international subsidiaries.
The serious cuts caused by the Covid pandemic are now history. At the time, setting records gave way to empty halls and revenues that fell far short of breaking even, despite the use of digital services and hybrid formats. “These were cuts that we would never have considered possible in our entire history,” says Dr Thomas Koch, responsible for Group Development within the Executive Board. “But thanks to an excellent team spirit among our employees we were able to get through that massive crisis with no forced redundancies.” Savings and financial support swiftly took effect in line with an emergency plan that had been held in reserve.
The Spirit to Grow: The future growth of NürnbergMesse
NürnbergMesse benefited from the fact that digitalization had been an increasingly important part of strategic planning for the future even before the pandemic. Opportunities offered by the digital transformation must be utilized to build up a powerful technical infrastructure, digitalize processes and develop new, digital business models for the company. “Our future will always take the form of a physical home,” says Dr Martin Kassubek, Director responsible for Business Development, describing the way forward for NürnbergMesse. “But we also need a digital ecosystem to share the experience – in other words, a good mix of both worlds.” 
The company’s growth curve is once again rising sharply. Following a revenue figure of €265 million in 2023, a relatively weak year in the cycle, the target for the anniversary year of 2024 is as high as €340 million for the first time – a new revenue record. “Our other targets are ambitious but are still based on realistic planning,” asserts Dirk Blum, the Director responsible for Finance & Facility. That also includes rigorous investment in HR, events, digitalization and the further sustainable conversion of the exhibition venue during the anniversary year.
Petra Wolf, Director with responsibility for Product Management and thus also all events at the exhibition venue, has no doubts that Nuremberg will continue to be an attractive exhibition venue in the future: “Nuremberg has the perfect advantage – a successful mixture of tradition and modernity. Our customers in Germany and abroad appreciate not only our wide range of exhibitions, congresses and corporate events, but also Nuremberg itself as a destination, its mediaeval heart and the state-of-the-art city of industry and science.”
Anniversary book: From Nuremberg’s trading tradition to state-of-the-art trade fairs
For its anniversary, NürnbergMesse is releasing a 200-page book that, for the first time, brings together the history of the company and the city’s position in the historical context of markets and trading. Entitled “Messe.Stadt.Nürnberg. The Spirit to Grow”, it is published by the Executive Board. “Our success has always been due to the work of many people, never just one individual. That’s the reason for the collective editorship,” Ottmann explains. A wealth of contemporary interviews offer deep insights, and essays explore the extensive array of facts and figures. The authors include Bavarian Prime Minister Dr Markus Söder, Nuremberg’s Lord Mayor and company Supervisory Board Chair Marcus König, as well as TV entertainer Thomas Gottschalk, with a view of “his” Nuremberg. An urban campaign and an emotion-rich film place both the history and the future of NürnbergMesse in context. Anyone wishing to view these can access them via the website www.50years.nuernbergmesse.de/en/.
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