Next month's Fespa Africa is poised to be the biggest iteration to date when it opens its doors at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Johannesburg on 7 September.
The three-day trade show is set to break exhibitor and visitor records, with around 120 exhibitors representing more than 300 brands and visitor numbers set to exceed last year’s record of 6,000.
This is the third Fespa Africa to date but the first one to be aligned with Printing South Africa, which is organising a print jamboree for the week, with dinner, presentations and networking events. The theme is ‘dinner in colour’.
Fespa group exhibition manager Michael Ryan said: “Alongside our partners, this is the largest Fespa Africa we have run, and we are very happy with the response so far, especially from the local market but also all across the Sub-Saharan region.
“We had just less than 6,000 last year, which was affected by a couple of strikes, but we expect with increased marketing definitely 6,000 plus, with growth and higher attendance from neighbouring countries.”
Ryan said there had been particular interest this year from Nigeria and Kenya, countries in which Fespa has already hosted smaller events in this year.
He added: “A lot of the exhibitors will be showcasing innovative solutions to print. A big focus for this year will be in the decor markets. We will also be looking into personalisation and variable data printing, which is still in its infancy.”
Main exhibitors in the three halls include Canon, which has the show's largest stand at 400sqm, along with Mimaki, Roland, Epson and Esko.
First-time exhibitors include Vivid Lamination, Stahls and Hexis.
“We’ve got traditional exhibitors, who are the main African distributors, and smaller companies, but the important thing is that more and more international companies are taking an interest. They’ve seen the market development in Africa and think it’s the right time to come and join the show,” added Ryan.
Fespa events all over the world this year look set for success. Fespa Mexico, taking place in August, has already sold out its floorspace.