WASSER BERLIN 2009 reports increases in all areas

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• More exhibitors, larger area and one third more trade visitors; Participants becoming increasingly international; Sharp increase in the number of meetings and congresses

BERLIN, Germany, Apr. 14, 2009 -- From 31 March to 3 Apr. 2009 the 13th WASSER BERLIN presented innovative products and services from the international water industry. Despite the difficult economic situation Europe's leading trade fair for the water industry was able to increase exhibitor numbers to 704 (2006: 630) and the display area to 49,000 square meters, with even more trade visitors, especially from abroad.

A total of 34,583 (26,000) people from 79 countries attended the water supply and wastewater disposal exhibition and the accompanying program of congresses, which comprised 100 groups of papers and 350 outstanding speakers. This corresponds to a 30 percent increase. Among the trade visitors 22 percent came from abroad. The specialist congresses accompanying WASSER BERLIN 2009 attracted 6,967 participants (5,498).

An increasing number of exhibitors are coming from abroad: 20 percent in 2006, compared with 26 percent (179 foreign exhibitors) in 2009. "The quality of the trade visitors at WASSER BERLIN showed a further significant improvement," according to Dr. Christian Göke, COO of Messe Berlin GmbH. "This represents a major success in view of the fact that many companies are currently cutting down on their travel costs and are sending fewer staff on business trips. However, we recorded visitors from a larger number of companies and more decision-makers too. With increases in all the main areas at WASSER BERLIN we are confident that the decision to hold this event every two years will result in a good response in 2011 too."

Satisfied exhibitors and trade visitors
According to the survey conducted by an independent market research organization exhibitors reported successful business during the fair. 85 percent (2006: 89) assessed the commercial results of their attendance as positive and 21 percent (19) confirmed that contracts had been signed during the fair, while 78 percent (74) of exhibitors anticipate that follow-up business will be satisfactory at the very least.

Trade visitors gave a thoroughly positive assessment of WASSER BERLIN 2009, with 92 percent of them (91) describing the range of items on offer as very good to satisfactory. A positive overall impression was obtained by 93 percent (92) of trade visitors, with 96 percent (94) describing the overall results of their attendance at the fair as positive. Contracts were signed by eleven percent of trade visitors during the trade fair. During the course of their visit 83 percent were able to establish new business contacts which will lead to further negotiations or actual business transactions after the fair.

Technical congresses and trade fair forums a complete success
With its combination of trade fair and technical congresses WASSER BERLIN once again proved to be a major attraction for trade visitors from the water industry. In a new development the existing partner events took the form of separate technical congresses this year. VEREIN WASSER BERLIN is the association with the task of coordinating the technical congresses and trade fair forums, as well as the WASsERLEBEN information show.

Once again the Discussion Meeting on Water Supply 2009 was a successful feature of WASSER BERLIN. Over 750 participants attended the technical papers to learn about the latest developments in the water sector. Among the main items on the agenda were the revision of the German drinking water regulations, strategies for maintaining the pipeline networks and installations, and the interaction between energy efficiency and hygiene. The program included an exhibitors' and an industry forum and an innovation forum for the first time. The links with WASSER BERLIN produced additional synergies. With only a short distance to the exhibition halls, those attending the meetings were easily able to obtain information from the exhibitors there and to establish or intensify their contacts.

There was a very good response to "geofora," organized by figawa (Association of Companies in the Gas and Water Industries), which offered symposiums dealing with drilling technology, well construction and geothermics. With out-standing speakers and attendees from over 30 countries the fifth AOP (Advanced Oxidation Processes) Conference was a complete success. Organized jointly by the IOA and IWA, it was being staged by the Cutec Institute Clausthal Zellerfeld for the first time. The main focus was on current issues concerning modern water treatment technology. The Association of Municipal Utilities (VKU) organized an event for the first time featuring papers on water conservation. Desalination is a subject of increasing importance in emerging nations and was dealt with by the German seawater desalination organization Deutsche MeerwasserEntsalzung e.V. (DME). The IWA conferences of the Berlin-based organization Kompetenz-Zentrum Wasser Berlin attracted many prominent foreign participants. The program was augmented by a number of forums devoted to various countries and by exhibitors' forums, all taking place in the exhibition halls. WASSER BERLIN had a partner country, Bulgaria, for the first time this year. Extensive information about this interesting market was provided by the German-Bulgarian Forum, organized by the DWA.

The best Construction Site Day since this event was first held
The 6th International Pipeline Construction Symposium and the Construction Site Day attracted record attendances. More than 600 trade visitors took advantage of the 20 bus tours and they were joined by more than 150 business associates who had received invitations directly from contractors to visit them at their various construction sites. Information was available in the form of practical examples of the methods currently being used for the economic renovation, repair, renewal and new installation of water, sewage and gas pipes in city streets. This was also an opportunity to present various pipe materials and renewal methods. There was particular interest in trenchless construction methods, especially microtunnelling, which made its international debut for nominal widths of 250 mm on 7 June 1984 in Berlin and is thus celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. Other techniques on display included the renewal of fibrous pipes for unpressurised sewer pipes of DN 500 GG using the new starline®HPL-S process (high pressure liner sewer), the front-steer method of trenchless sewer pipe renewal, the construction of a DN 1000 relief stormwater pipe using steel and glass fiber-reinforced plastic pipes, the construction of a DN 1600 sewer pipe under the Neukölln ship canal, the presentation of Europe's largest slatted filter installation, the trenchless renewal of water supply pipes and various pipe-lining methods.

'WASsERLEBERN' information show enjoyed by more than 7,500 visitors
The information show "WASsERLEBEN" attracted keen interest among visitors, especially young people. Schools from Berlin and Brandenburg, together with more than 20 companies and organizations, occupied a 6,000 square meter area in Hall 2.1 on the Berlin Exhibition Grounds in order to present their experiments, exhibits and activities dealing with the subject of water. They included young people with the experiments that they conducted as part of the young researchers' competition "Jugend forscht." In addition some 200 school pupils conducted visitors around the information show and explained details about the experiments on the stands each day. Following its introduction in 1993 this show has sought to provide information about the subject of water in a lively and generally understandable form and to encourage young people to consider a career in the water sector.

Exhibitors' views
Andreas Schweitzer, General Sales Manager, Hermann Sewerin GmbH:
As far as the business aspect is concerned we are very satisfied with our presentation at the fair, and this year our expectations were even exceeded. As a manufacturer it is very important for us that this event is attended exclusively by trade visitors with a particular interest in drinking water. Berlin has definite advantages as a venue. Not only the fact that it is the capital, but also the increasing attendance by trade visitors from Eastern Europe are of decisive importance. That is why attendance at WASSER BERLIN is so vital for us, and we anticipate coming here every two years. I was particularly fascinated by the information show WASsERLEBEN. I was surprised by the number of young people involved in it and by all the activities taking place there. Sewerin would also like to exhibit at the next event.

Florian Schindler, Sales Director, HAWLE ARMATUREN GMBH:
"We were able to welcome very many customers to our stand at the fair. We also used WASSER BERLIN 2009 in order to successfully introduce numerous new products such as our Baio rim seal for the Hawle-Baio system. In view of the response that we met with this year we intend to take part again in WASSER BERLIN now that it is being held every two years."

Dr. Helge Hoyme, General Manager, GWE pumpenboese GmbH:
"WASSER BERLIN is one of the most important trade shows for us, especially as a means of maintaining contacts with existing customers and establishing new contacts. The trade show was a success for us. As in previous years the organization and services were very good. We look forward to coming again."

Mario Jahn, Coordinator, Water Division, figawa -- Association of Companies in the Gas and Water Industries:
"The highlight for us at this year's WASSER BERLIN was the geofora Congress on the subjects of drilling technology, well construction and geothermics, with 170 participants. Congress participants and visitors to the trade show showed a great deal of interest in our geofora market place."

Martin Rakers, Divisional Director for Civil Engineering/Pressure Pipes, Wavin GmbH:
"A very good trade fair with an excellent attendance. It provides us with the trade visitors that we want to meet, such as dealers, engineering consultancies, municipal utilities and supply companies from all over the world."

Reinhold Krumnack, Divisional Director for Communication and Vocational Training, German Technical and Scientific Association for Gas and Water (DVGW):
"The larger display area, the increase in the number of participants and the more international character of the visitors were all reflected on our stand. We held a great many good discussions. The symbiosis between WASSER BERLIN 2009 and the Discussion Meeting of Water Supply (wat) met with a very good response, and in the future we would like to see more emphasis given to the water."

Otto Schaaf, President of the German Association for Water, Wastewater and Waste (DWA):
"The event exceeded our expectations. We at the DWA are very happy with the stand and with the link with the international forum, and were also able to welcome many foreign guests. There was very keen interest in the subject of the water industry, including wastewater, and the trend is definitely upwards when compared with the previous fair. There was a very good response to the conference program."

Wilhelm Kröfges, Chief Executive of the Pipeline Industry Association (rbv):
"We are overwhelmed, our new concept of a hall devoted to pipeline construction, with a central rbv stand as the communication center, is a complete success. Member companies come with their customers, the stand is permanently full, it's pandemonium. We believe that even more members will be encouraged to take part in the next WASSER BERLIN. The training and careers section met with a good response too, we issued some 400 admission tickets to schools and many school parties came to visit us."

Robert Löbbecke, Sales Director, Saint-Gobain PAM Germany:
"We are very satisfied with the numbers that came, our stand is always full but not over-crowded. Visitors to the fair are very interested in our new items, and it is vital to be innovative and to keep looking ahead. The timing is right, in the spring, when construction activity is not yet at its busiest, and our customers still have time."

Frank Bruckmann, Chairman of the Board, Berlinwasser Holding AG:
"From our viewpoint WASSER BERLIN was very successful. The response was greater than it was three years ago. We made many contacts, especially with visitors from Algeria and Jordan, as well as with many from Germany. Right at the start of the fair the 'WASsERLEBEN' show attracted a great deal of interest."

Elena Belyaeva, Chief Financial Officer, Russian Association of Water Supply Sewerage:
"The exhibition is very important for us and we are very satisfied. As the association representing the Russian water industry this was our first presentation abroad. We brought the directors of some 20 member companies from the largest Russian cities to Berlin and, together with the representatives of German companies, they were also invited to attend a reception in the Russian embassy. We want to make use of the extensive experience of the German water industry, and German companies have shown keen interest in the Russian market too."

Hanns-Otto Entenmann, General Manager, Tröger + Entenmann:
"We have had links with WASSER BERLIN for many years and for us it is the hub serving the new German states and Eastern Europe. We had many foreign visitors, including those from Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands. We also welcomed interested visitors from Arab countries, including the United Arab Emirates, to the stand. The mood and the rate of attendance by visitors were good, and better than at the previous fair. As always the municipal water sector was very well represented.

About WASSER BERLIN
In 2011 this event will be reduced in length from five to four days, from Tuesday to Friday. This change is expected to attract more foreign exhibitors and visitors. WASSER BERLIN 2011 will take place from 21 to 24 June.

The International No Dig will be held as part of WASSER BERLIN 2011.

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