International Business Gathering “The Power of the Exhibition Industry – Today and Tomorrow” on the Zagreb Fair


Global Exhibitions Day was celebrated for the first time in the entire world, on June 8th 2016 and, on this occasion, international business gathering The Power of the Exhibition Industry – Today and Tomorrow was organized in Zagreb Fair’s Congress centre.

Dina Tomšić, Fair Head, and Martina Bienenfeld, Director of Zagreb Tourist Board and Mayor’s delegate, gave the welcome speech on behalf of the organizers. Two panel-discussions were organized as the part of the conference: Trade Fairs - The Business and Social Communication Platform and The Economy Needs Trade Fairs.

First panel-discussion was brought by Josip Zaher, Vice-President of the CCE for Tourism, Trade and Finances. “The promotion of the Croatian economy via international and domestic fairs is one of the main activities of the CCE. Breaking into the new markets and strengthening positions on the current, traditional markets, are just one of the ways to encourage business internationalization and, thus, increasing manufacturing and employment”, said Zaher.

Second panel-discussion was a good opportunity to emphasize positive practical examples of the importance of fairs and what can they mean for different industry branches. Continuous appearance on fairs is immensely important and missing an opportunity to be the part of this kind of manifestation can have a certain negative effect on business partners, customers and also on various countries’ ministries, since lack of appearance can be viewed as the symptom of business crisis, or it can be interpreted as if the company was closed or sold.

Despite the increasing popularity of the Internet sales and communication, fairs are still seen as immediate or direct marketing, characterized by face-to-face communication, thus they still remain lead element of the sales channel.
Nevertheless, times are changing, and so are fairs: they are becoming more and more specialized, the duration is becoming shorter, new content is being introduced and fairs are followed by professional gatherings. Also, nowadays fairs are closely related to conferences, presentations, round tables, visits to objects and facilities, all of it in order to increase the value of the manifestation itself.

Along with the investments and consumptions, one of the biggest factors which cause the completion of the economy cycles is export, but it is important to have in mind that it can also affect its launch. In that sense, fairs must be seen as the best place to launch the export, thus directly contributing to the well-being of the economy.