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Spoga+Gafa closes its doors with expanded range of offers, top quality attendance and a 10,7% exhibitors increase

The spoga+gafa closed its doors on 2 September 2014. Around 36,800 trade visitors from over 100 countries attended the international garden trade fair to inform themselves about the novelties in the garden industry. The share of foreign visitors was 58 percent.

"The overall attendance in 2014 was stable. However, there was a shift in the visitor structure across the countries. Positive developments were particularly recorded from North and South America and Oceania. Due to the social and political situation, growth from Africa and Russia was not to be expected," explained Katharina C. Hamma, Chief Operating Officer of Koelnmesse GmbH. Boasting 2,012 exhibitors from 56 countries, the spoga+gafa 2014 experienced a growth rate of 10.7 percent compared to the previous year. "The abundance of innovations and the expansion of the range of exhibits raised the event up to top level. The high media coverage in both the trade and daily press also indicates a positive development," commented Hamma. "The quality of the visitors has also underlined the fact that the spoga+gafa is the leading international garden trade fair."

In 2014, the spoga+gafa covered exhibition space spanning 241,000 square metres with its five exhibition segments 'garden creation', 'garden living', 'garden care', 'garden unique' and 'garden basic' and the trade fair showcased everything that makes garden living better, more beautiful and more comfortable. In addition to the countless innovations and further developments that were celebrated at the spoga+gafa, the theme living green was prominently represented especially in Hall 7. The range of exhibits of the spoga+gafa was significantly extended for example with the introduction of the Plant Plant and the Landgard Plant Ordering Days, which were held at the spoga+gafa for the first time in 2014. This, in turn, increased the appeal of the garden trade fair for the visitors. In the scope of the Landgard Plant Ordering Days, around 100 horticultural companies and service providers presented a comprehensive assortment of nursery items, potted plants and seasonal goods. An accompanying programme tailormade to suit the target group rounded off the experience of visiting the trade fair.

Practical and attractively designed concepts and secondary placements of the exhibitors were presented on the 'boulevard of ideas'. Expert lectures and discussion rounds such as the Taspo Talk went down very well with the visitors and also the lecture programme especially for landscape architects that was launched this year celebrated a successful premiere at the spoga+gafa with over 30 participants. Offering an attractive programme and numerous demonstrations on the practical areas, the Grill Park, which was very well attended was once again in 2014 able to impress the trade visitors with themes from the grill and BBQ sector.

Increased attractiveness for visitors: Great mood and top quality With an 10.7 percent increase in the number of exhibitors, the expansion of the range of exhibits and an accompanying programme tailormade to suit the targe group, the attractiveness of the spoga+gafa was increased significantly. The visitors were correspondingly satisfied with the event as the results of the visitor survey underlined. 77 percent of the people interviewed were satisfied or even very satisfied as far as achieving the goals of their visit were concerned. 51.3 percent evaluated the general information offer and the market overview positively. In its role as a communication platform the spoga+gafa 2014 also scored more highly than in the previous year: In terms of establishing new business contacts 42.5 percent of the visitors were satisfied or very satisfied and in terms of cultivating existing contacts 49.6 percent were satisfied or very satisfied. As such, the recommendation rate was correspondingly high: 90 percent would recommend a good business acquaintance to visit the spoga+gafa. The quality of the visitors also contributed towards the good mood at the trade fair: Around 73 percent of the visitors interviewed are involved in procurement decisions, 47 percent are even decisive in the decision-making process. In terms of the visitor structure, people who work at management level in the companies or businesses or in the buying and procurement departments are the most strongly represented group of visitors at the spoga+gafa. At the same time these two groups also recorded the strongest growth rates in comparison to 2013.

The Association of the German Sport Equipment Industry (BSI), the conceptual sponsor of the spoga+gafa, also drew a positive balance: "After a relatively warm winter with very little snow, the leisure and garden season 2014 got off to a very early start. Plenty of sun and mild temperatures in March and April already attracted many consumers to the DIY stores, furniture and sport shops, which meant that the garden and leisure season got off to a dynamic start. The German garden and leisure sport industry thus entered the year 2014 in a positive frame of mind," explained Désirée Derin-Holzapfel, President of the BSI, adding: "The late summer months were however characterised by variable weather conditions, which was also reflected in the turnovers in the trade and industry. Innovations, lifestyle in the garden and barbecue sector have contributed twoards the positive mood at the spoga+gafa 2014 and have thus laid a good foundation for the 2015 season. Sustainability and product quality is the basis for ongoing consumer enthusiasm for garden, grill and leisure sport items and a successful 2015." The German Garden Industry Association (IVG), the conceptual sponsor of the gafa, assessed this year's spoga+gafa as follows: "In principle, we are satisfied with the spoga+gafa 2014, even though there was a lower frequency of visitors on the Sunday and the Tuesday. The share of international visitors was very positive, especially customers from the Benelux countries were strongly represented. Thanks to the quality of the visitors and the resulting good discussions between the exhibitors and the visitors, the spoga+gafa remains to be an important impetus for the industry - with further upward potential," summed up Hans-Jürgen Riehl, Chairman of the Advisory Board of the gafa.

In 2015, the spoga+gafa will take place from 30 August to 1 September

Information & images by courtesy of Spoga+Gafa Read more news related Spoga+gafa published at Infurma Visit the spoga+gafa website
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