BAU opts for ‘hybrid trade fair’ to replace standard show

BAU have announced that its trade fair due to take place in 11-16 January 2021 will no longer be a conventional in person event. Instead, there will be a hybrid event taking place 13-15 January 2021 where exhibitors can present their innovations to a wide audience.

This news comes after Messe München announced in June of this year that the event would take place as planned in January 2021, but subject to monitoring developments and reassessing the situation at the end of September.

Dr. Reinhard Pfeiffer, Deputy CEO of Messe München commented: “With the lowering infection rates and border openings in June, there was reason to hope that the situation would improve significantly. Unfortunately, the situation has changed significantly since August. Even if an in-person event would have been possible with our protection and hygiene measures, this decision has now become necessary due to the current developments regarding new travel restrictions and the designation of risk areas throughout Europe. According to our exhibitor survey, which we have conducted over the last few days, especially against the background of the worsening Covid-19 situation, the vast majority of our exhibitors now consider their participation in the presence trade fair to be unrealistic, as in the current situation it can be assumed that only a few of the originally expected visitors will be on site.”

“The decision made in June was right. At that time, it was far too soon to call BAU into question. It was clear to us all that clarification would be needed at the end of September. It therefore also made sense to carry out a survey last week. The Advisory Board and Board of Trustees back the decision to replace BAU 2021 with a hybrid format” he continued.

In addition to a compact exhibition space, the hybrid format comprises an additional digital offering for exhibitors and visitors who are unable to travel to Munich due to the travel restrictions.

Exhibitors will be able to present themselves at the ICM International Congress Center München and in around two exhibition halls where forums and shows will also be held. Companies that want to present themselves on site can choose between compact system stands and an individual stand design. furthermore, live streaming and video recordings of talks and discussions from the forums will also be available.

Additionally,  companies will have the opportunity to present products virtually in their own online sessions. To get in touch and discuss with exhibitors and other visitors, the hybrid format also offers virtual networking modules.

A postponement of BAU was discussed with the Advisory Board and Board of Trustees. Martin Hörmann, Deputy Chairman of the committees, explains: “Delaying the trade fair was never a serious option for us, because it would have interrupted the two-year innovation cycle that BAU has always followed. International exhibitors and visitors are at the core of the conventional BAU. Under the current COVID-19 conditions, we would not have been able to meet these expectations.”

Details about the new format and information on the participation options for exhibitors and visitors are expected to be available online from mid-October at Exhibitors who had already booked their stand for the conventional in-person trade fair can still present themselves on site. Others who have cancelled due to coronavirus can reconsider taking part, whether digitally or on site, under the new conditions.

The key themes of the 2021 event include “Digital Transformation”, “The Challenge of Climate Change”, “Resources & Recycling” and finally, “The Future of Building” otherwise referred to as ‘Homes of the Future’. In addition to the key themes, BAU will also focus on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic as a special topic.

In 2023, BAU will be back again as normal, complete with the additional digital offerings that will be available in January in the hybrid format for the first time. Messe München is very confident, since almost all of the prominent exhibitors who are staying away in 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic have already confirmed their participation for the next event in January 2023.

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