Looking Back at ACHEMA 2009

June 19, 2012

The last ACHEMA trade show took place in 2009, with more than 3760 exhibitors and 173000 visitors filling the halls and mile-long walkways.

The last ACHEMA trade show took place in 2009, with more than 3760 exhibitors and 173000 visitors filling the halls and mile-long walkways. A large number of attendees were from Germany, but the organisers, DECHEMA, also noted a growing number of international participation compared with previous events, with attendees hailing from 93 countries. Around 1757 exhibitors were from outside of Germany, an increase from 1723 in 2006 and just 1550 in 2003.

The majority of exhibitors rated the success of ACHEMA as very good or good (70.9%), with only 2.8% not enjoying the event. The technical competence of visitors was also rated very highly, with 81.2% of exhibitors indicated competence was very good or good.

Despite the success of the last ACHEMA, 2009 was a troubled year. The global recession was still very much a new situation and crisis in 2009, particularly as the full extent of the downturn only began to truly sink in for many in late 2008, and many companies were unsure how best to manage their business for future growth and success. Many industries worldwide cut back on investment into new products, but the Pharmaceutical Technology Europe team were pleasantly surprised at ACHEMA 2009 by the sheer numbers of companies speaking optimistically about the future and their investment into R&D.

In addition to the economic downturn, 2009 also witnessed the swine flu pandemic, which inevitably had some effect on foreign travel, but did not seem to hamper ACHEMA attendance.

Last ACHEMA’s themes centred on process efficiency and cost-effectiveness (which continue to occupy the industry today), but our team also noticed a huge emphasis on single-use systems from pharmaceutical and bioprocessing exhibitors. Indeed, the use of single-use systems have continued to grow since 2009 and many new, advanced systems have been launched. If you’re interested in such systems, we recommend you to take a look at our Disposables Advisor column series!

This year, there are high expectations for the event. An increase in 2009’s numbers is expected, with the fastest growing exhibition groups being measurement, control and automation, and pharmaceutical, packaging and storage techniques. In particular, the organisers also expect more exhibitors and visitors from China, India, Turkey, South Korea and some Eastern European countries.

Make sure you tell us how ACHEMA 2012 is shaping up for you by filling out our quick survey. What trends are you seeing for the pharma industry?