The Council reviews Fira de Barcelona’s business prior to this autumn’s launch of four new trade shows

The General Council of Fira de Barcelona has made a review of the institution’s positive results, whose venues hosted around 30 trade shows and congresses in the first half of 2016 as well as nine new jointly-organised trade fairs abroad. This intensive activity resumes from September with the organisation of some major trade events and the launch of four new shows associated with motor sports and other strategic sectors such as technology and the sustainable economy. These are Barcelona Games World, Iwater, Circular Economy and Barcelona Motorsport Show.
At the Council’s meeting today, chaired by Barcelona mayor Ada Colau, the accounts were approved for 2015, the year with the second highest revenue in Fira’s history, topping 150 million euros, some 27% higher than the revenue for 2013, which is the closest comparable year in terms of the trade fair calendar. Fira’s EBITDA, at 13.3 million euros, also far surpassed the 10 million euros of 2013.
This underlines the positive trajectory of Fira’s activities, which over the course of this year expects to host more than 60 major events and around 50 corporate meetings. The first half of this year played host to such important trade shows as the Mobile World Congress, Alimentaria, Barcelona Bridal Fashion Week, Denim Première Vision and the new In(3D)ustry, amongst others, as well as events aimed at the general public such as B-Travel, Bizbarcelona and Sonar, not to mention technology and medical congresses such as the SAP corporate congress and those of the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL) and the Spanish Rheumatology Society.
Innovative trade shows
The second half of Fira’s trade show calendar in 2016 will also be a hectic one, with some brand new features. The institution is launching four new events with international scope, most of which are associated with emerging sectors, further underscoring ‘the institution’s commitment to innovate and attract major events, thus strengthening its role as an economic driving force and a generator of wealth and social value in the region’, says the president of the Board of Directors, Josep Lluís Bonet.
These are: Barcelona Games World, the video games fair organised in conjunction with the Spanish Video Games Association (AEVI); the Barcelona Motorsport Show, with a focus on motor sports and competition; Iwater, on the integral water cycle; and Circular Economy, the congress dedicated to new models of reusing resources and extending the useful life of objects. These last two events will be held at the Gran Via venue at the same time as the Smart City Expo World Congress, the leading event for smart cities, and European Utility Week, the travelling event on utilities industries.
These four will be highlights of the trade show calendar this autumn, which in total features around 30 shows and congresses, many of international renown, such as CPhI Worldwide, the world’s biggest trade fair for the pharmaceutical industry, which will occupy almost the whole of the Gran Via venue; the Barcelona Boat Show; Hostelco (hospitality equipment), ibtm world (the leading business travel event) and IoT Solutions World Congress (the Internet of Things applied to industry), as well as other corporate events in the world of technology such as TechEd by SAP and VM World.
A driving force for international business
During the first half of the year, Fira de Barcelona has given a new impetus to its international strategy to promote its presence abroad and help companies internationalise their business.
Smart City Expo events have been held in Istanbul, Puebla (Expo), Casablanca and Kyoto; there have been two new events in Cuba: HostelCuba, on equipment for the hospitality sector, and Alimentos Cuba, devoted to the food industry; Alimentaria Mexico; and the Jewellery and Automotive shows in Qatar, plus management of its fairground, the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center. This international activity will continue during the second half of the year with some brand new projects in the portfolio.
Barcelona, 20 July 2016