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Q: OutDoor is now set to stay in Friedrichshafen until at least 2013. What do you see as the reasons for the bid’s acceptance by European Outdoor Group members?
Stefan Reisinger: OutDoor in Friedrichshafen has been a success story for 15 years now. Why would you want to re-locate something that works? We have a long-standing partnership with the EOG. We’ve worked together to advance OutDoor as a concept, a lifestyle and a trade fair in and of itself. OutDoor and Lake Constance are a natural fit. We were able to convince the EOG membership of this with a credible and balanced concept.
Q: Do you expect the recent cancellation of ISPO Summer 2008 to be a further boost to OutDoor?
Stefan Reisinger: Yes. Most of all, we’re counting on more trade visitors and greater media attention, as a result. There’s been no noticeable effect on our exhibitors in the core outdoor segment, since that industry has been fully represented in Friedrichshafen for years. Greater interest, however, has been shown by the outdoor-related trail running business, whose future OutDoor participation we plan to strengthen. Our overall top priority is to maintain the trade fair’s focus on outdoor products. The OutDoor trade fair will remain loyal to its core concept, and not become a general sporting goods fair!
Q: Starting this year, you’ll be able to expand your exhibition space due to the added hall at Messe Friedrichshafen. Will this mean new exhibitors and/or thematic areas?
Stefan Reisinger: It’s allowed us to accommodate new exhibitors, but also to offer our existing clients more room for their stands. This year, Hall A6 will be completely occupied by exhibitors, with the emphasis on clothing, footwear and accessories. The new Hall A7 will house part of the tent city, as well as the stage where the fashion show and other events will be presented. Due to ongoing construction work on the east side of the trade fair grounds, there will be two access points to this year’s OutDoor: the entrances to Halls A7 and B4.
Q: The subject of environmental sustainability is becoming increasingly important, even for the outdoor industry. How will you approach this at the trade fair?
Stefan Reisinger: OutDoor is also a media event, which is an opportunity we along with the EOG want to use to encourage discussion, and to present exemplary projects. The â€œoutdoor perspectiveâ€ ought to provide the subjects of sustainability and ecology with a platform. That starts with workshops and lectures held for the industry and the retail sector, and extends to recognising â€˜genuine’ outdoor projects with awards from the EOG Association of Conservation.
Q: Will there be any conceptual changes to OutDoor as of 2009?
Stefan Reisinger: By the time OutDoor 2009 is held, the entire exhibition grounds of Messe Friedrichshafen will be complete. We will then have at our disposal two new halls, a spacious entrance foyer and an additional open-air exhibition ground. As a result, OutDoor will once again take on new dimensions. The scale of this upcoming change is perhaps only comparable to our move from the old trade fair grounds in the city to the new site in 2002. It will also offer us a variety of means to increase the size and quality of OutDoor, and to make it even more relevant to the industry.â€
For further information about the OutDoor 2008, please visit www.european-outdoor.com.