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Despite the unfavourable economy, the 2013 edition of the Bologna fair has the right numbers. The pavilions dedicated to tyres and related equipment are those with the biggest growth, proof that companies are investing, the crisis notwithstanding

Luca Ricci

WHEN ECONOMIC phenomena are analysed it is frequently necessary to make a distinction.  In the automobile sector the picture is very different from a geographical and product viewpoint. If there is a recession in the Eurozone, with particular reference to peripheral countries, this is not the case in China, Turkey and Brazil, for example, which have been expanding strongly for some time now, and even the United States is showing the first signs of a recovery. This is why the total vehicles sold throughout the world this year will probably set a new record. With regard to specific  segments, the vehicle repair situation in Italy is better than that for new vehicle sales, so much so that, despite the crisis, aftermarket revenues stood at €26,919 million compared to new car sales of €26,515 million (Autopromotec Observatory estimate 2012).
These few considerations help to explain why Autopromotec, a highly specialized event with a strong international calling, will have better numbers than the previous edition in terms of exhibitors and metres of exhibition area. It should be remembered also that just under 80% of the equipment manufactured in Italy is exported. The tyre changer district, for example, is a genuine national excellence. Another element at the basis of the Bologna exhibition’s increase in numbers is the completion of the event selection process and therefore in “odd” years throughout Europe Autopromotec is still a major exhibition in the vehicle repair sector.

Usage instructions
To get the best out of visiting the event (from 22 to 26 May), it is possible to register on the exhibition’s website Tickets can be printed at home, thereby avoiding the queues at ticket booths. These tickets are electronic and can be read by exhibitors with the Autopromotec App for smartphones or tablets. However, tickets can also be bought at the entrances if preferred.
The pavilions of more immediate interest to tyre retailers are the classic 19, 20 and 22 dedicated to new tyres, retreads, rims and related equipment, which were fully booked much earlier this year. However, broadening horizons to take in the entire exhibition is very worthwhile. In fact there are  networks that propose services for tyre specialists and those dedicated to the underbody in general. With regard to equipment, the new MCTCNet 2 inspection protocol will soon be coming in force so the area dedicated to diagnostics has been doubled with the creation of the “Diagnostics Hub” in pavilions 14 and 15. For those interested in trucks, in addition to the classical guide dedicated to trucks, for the first time this year there will be an external exhibition area. Number 44 is dedicated specifically to companies operating in this sector as part of the second Autopromotec Industrial Vehicles Service initiative. For equipment that is of more specific interest to retailers, the traditional strongpoints include, for example, pavilion 29 entirely dedicated to lifting equipment. The machine tools section is also very comprehensive at the 2013 edition, with many important product debuts.
Autopromotec will present a new exhibition concept aimed at combining an exhibition, communication and education and this will be further developed over the years. Apropos of this, the AutoporomotecEDU initiative has been intensified. In pavilion 30, two rooms will host in rapid succession during the first four days of the event (from Wednesday to Saturday) discussions on some of the most important subjects for the sector in an attempt to forecast trends and look at the possible future for vehicle repairs. Also in this case a calendar of events has been prepared and will be constantly updated on
At the 2013 edition abundant use will be made of IT technologies in addition to tools like Twitter and Facebook for real time updates on exhibition events.  The Autopromotec App can be downloaded free of charge from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store and it will be gradually updated as the start of the fair approaches with contents that will enable all operators to make their visit even more enjoyable. A list of exhibitors is already available on the website and a few days before the fair it will transformed into an online catalogue.

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