October 19, 2020
Experiences from our one and only business trade fair 2020
The Automotive Testing Expo in China took place in September 2020. This exhibition in Shanghai was the only trade fair we had this year due to COVID 19. We were uncertain how this event will be like in these days. No German colleague was taking part this year. That was one change. After the fair we talked to our RHF colleague on the spot, Fanji Kong, about the trade fair experiences in Corona times and what other major changes happened.
RHF: Fanji, what were your expectations for this year’s exhibition before the event as it was the first trade fair this year with COVID 19 regulations?
Fanji: Due to the impact of COVID 19, there were almost no exhibitions in the first half of this year, and everyone’s travel was also subject to many restrictions. The government only gradually opened the exhibition industry from June. Before the Automotive Testing Expo started, we asked many customers about their willingness to participate in this trade fair. Many of the answers we got were uncertain. Almost every company was very cautious in letting their employees participating in the exhibition. So before the trade fair, we expected that the number of people will decrease this year. But we still went all out to make the best preparations as in the past years. We needed to present our best to all visitors.
RHF: Where there changes in preparation of the exhibition due to Corona?
Fanji: This year’s preparations have not changed much than before. The main difference was that we have prepared a lot of masks.
RHF: How was the Testing Expo like? What were the major changes in comparison to the last years?
Fanji: The scale of the exhibition has been reduced. But the remaining companies belong to the market leaders in the industry, which actually was an advantage for visitor to access the leading technologies. Besides that, and in case I haven’t mentioned it yet, there is another major change: Everyone had to wear a mask (laughts).
RHF: Did the visitors change?
Fanji: In terms of visitors, there are more customers of E-drive this year, I would say about 60%. Electro mobility was followed by the transmission field, and the engine field was also represented, but has been relatively small. However, the total number of people participating may have dropped by about 30% compared to previous years.
RHF: How were the exhibition days effected by the new situation? How did people react? Was it normal conversation or due to distance a bit challenging?
Fanji: The situation in China is now less severe, and everyone has relaxed their vigilance and kept a normal distance when speaking. Because of the requirements of the exhibition, everyone must wear a mask. Because we wear masks, we needed to raise our voices when speaking. It is still very challenging to speak with masks for three consecutive days. Our evenings were quite quiet and throat relaxing (laughs).
RHF: Was the exhibition a success? How satisfied are you as an exhibitioner? Were customers satisfied?
Fanji: I think this exhibition is still a success. Almost all our major customers have come. We exchanged a lot of information and ideas with each other. We have also met several new visitors, especially in the electric drive field. They may all become our future customer. Customers are also satisfied with this exhibition. One reason is that fewer people make a better communication environment. And they have also told me, that the companies that remained are the best in the industry. They can find the leading technologies in a certain field more easily.
RHF: What products were of major interest and why?
Fanji: The deltaANALYSER is still our flagship product here in China, but many customers also ask for the eolANALYSER. This is mainly due to the huge update and continuous improvements of the eolANALYSER in recent years. It is a great product fulfilling customers’ requirements and needs for quality assurance in production.
RHF: If the situation stays the same for the next year, would you change something for this exhibition? Any suggestions?
Fanji: There shouldn’t be much change, but I hope I won’t have to wear a mask next year. And hopefully our German colleagues from the Headquarter can participate again.