‘Integrated industry – industrial intelligence’: this was the theme of the 2019 Hannover Messe, the world’s leading trade fair showcasing industrial technology.
Running from 1-5 April, this year’s event has welcomed over 220,000 visitors. Over a vast site of around 500,000 square metres, 6,500 exhibitors from 75 countries have been presenting the latest innovations from across the tech spectrum – covering everything from the digital factory to integrated energy to automation, motion and drives.
Europe at the leading edge – but challenges ahead
From the sheer scope and scale of the innovations on display, there can be no doubt that European technology firms are at the cutting edge of the digital transformation, particularly when it comes to business-to-business and industrial applications. “The targeted combination of algorithms with real-world physics – that’s the strength of our industries,” remarked Carl Martin Welcker, President of German mechanical engineering association and Orgalim member VDMA, during the VDMA press conference.
While these industrial strengths have been driving growth in recent years, an increasingly unpredictable global landscape is dampening forecasts somewhat. Both VDMA and ZVEI (representing the electrical engineering and electronics sectors) announced more modest growth expectations for their respective branches during the Hannover Messe, each citing the rise in trade conflicts and protectionism as a major reason for their more cautious prognoses.
The impressive display of cutting-edge industrial intelligence on show at this year’s Hannover Messe is evidence that Europe’s tech companies continue to go from strength to strength, putting them in a strong position to build leadership in arenas from AI to Industry 4.0 to 5G.