Bernd Wilhelm, VW's representative to the International Suppliers Fair (IZB), and IZB board member Thomas Krause want to promote a technical dialog with suppliers. Bernd Wilhelm and Thomas Krause say the IZB is the industry's only event dealing exclusively with the supplier sector.
Mr. Wilhelm, how many exhibitors do you expect at the supplier fair this year?
In all, about 650 supplier from 21 countries will participate. We increased our exhibition space from 33,000 to 35,000 square meters compared with the last IZB in 2008.
Mr. Krause, can you continue to increase the fair's size?
There are still opportunities for small-scale improvements. But the amount of available exhibition space is pretty much exhausted. This year, we added to our parking areas at our expense, so we have some relief there. The exhibition area, however, will stay at about 35,000 square meters long-term.
How many exhibitors are coming from this year's partner countries, the U.S. and Canada?
Wilhelm: About 100 companies, with about 70 from the U.S.
What are you offering participants from the partner countries?
Wilhelm: One characteristic of the supplier fair is an integration of conferences and exhibitions, that means we are linking theory and practice.
For example, there will be an electric mobility forum starting on Oct. 4, and the American-Canadian Automotive Congress takes place on Oct. 5, one day before the fair opens its doors to its specialized visitors.
Many other technical events take place parallel to the IZB, including the VDI/Volkswagen joint conference, the annual meeting of the association of manufacturers of technical textiles in Europe, and Mobility Talk.
Krause: We have made it our job to provide support to each partner country in the run-up to the fair as well as afterwards. We see this focus as a unique characteristic in the trade fair landscape.