Two more major plastics machinery makers are pulling back on their participation in Fakuma 2020, set for October in Friedrichshafen, Germany, due to the ongoing situation regarding COVID-19 "and its adverse effects on daily life and business."
On July 7, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Plastics Machinery GmbH said it would refrain from actively participating at Fakuma "in case the exhibition will be executed this year at all."
"We are fortunate that the coronavirus has largely spared us," CEO Gerd Liebig said in a news release. "There have been isolated cases, but there have been no infections within the factories. Health is such a precious commodity. Even with hygiene measures in place, taking part in a trade fair involves too many imponderable risks and, unfortunately, we cannot eliminate risk."
The company added that Fakuma will continue to play a "major role" within the company's marketing strategy in the future, but not in 2020.
KraussMaffei Group also decided against "the familiar and usual active participation" in the Fakuma 2020 trade fair.
Like Sumitomo Demag, Munich-based KraussMaffei said Fakuma is one of the "most important platforms for showcasing new products, solutions and services for the plastics industry, as well as for meeting existing and prospective customers," the company feels there is simply no way for it to offer its customers and service providers a "satisfactory trade show experience," even with all hygiene and safety measures and precautions in place.
"Unfortunately, the risk of infection, present for all attendees including our employees, could not be eliminated. KraussMaffei very much regrets this step but sees no alternative in the current situation. Still, we would like to emphasize that we continue to be available to our customers and interested parties and that we will be happy to present our new developments and innovations in person through our sales teams and/or digitally anytime."
Previously, the Wittmann Group issued a similar statement, announcing that it would abstain from active participation at the show this year. Wittmann, too, cited concerns about the health risks involved, both for its associates and visitors, as well as uncertainty as to how a "trade fair booth could be set up and run in compliance with the necessary safety measures then in force."