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New-look CeBIT Ready for Blast Off

Deutsche Messe announced that this year’s CeBIT tradeshow will focus on business-to-business (B2B) and will be held March 10-14 in Hannover, Germany.

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Unedited press release follows:

CeBIT 2014 (10–14 March, Mon. thru Fri.)

Realigned CeBIT on growth trajectory

– “Datability” lead theme puts spotlight on IT security
– Over 100 industry leaders to speak at CeBIT Global Conferences
– 55 percent of exhibitors from outside Germany

6 March 2014 — Hannover, Germany. This Monday, the gates will open on a new-look CeBIT featuring strong international participation and more exhibitors than last year. “The realigned tradeshow concept has been well received,” said Oliver Frese, Member of the Managing Board at Deutsche Messe. “The global IT sector has given a resounding thumbs-up to the show’s one 100% B2B focus.” The keynote theme of this year’s CeBIT is “Datability” – the ability to process and use vast quantities of data responsibly and sustainably. The show’s official Partner Country is Great Britain.

“This year’s keynote theme, Datability, will be reflected throughout the show,” Frese explained. Many of the exhibition stands will feature innovative solutions that highlight the uses and benefits of big data applications. “The sheer variety of applications also shows that the ever-increasing volume of data, if used correctly, harbors enormous opportunities for almost every sector of industry. Digital information is the decisive resource of the 21st century, and this year’s CeBIT will show how companies can use it to achieve sustainable growth. Of course, Datability goes hand in hand with IT security, which is why CeBIT will also feature exhibits from over 500 providers of digital security solutions – more than ever before.” The central hub of this display category is the Security theme cluster in Hall 12, which features over 180 companies. Various other security-related offerings will be on exhibit at other locations spread around the CeBIT showgrounds.

Datability will also be a dominant theme at the CeBIT Global Conferences (CGC). There, 100 renowned speakers from around the world will take to three stages to deliver 70 hours of quality conference programming in the course of the five days of the show. EU Commissioner Neelie Kroes will kick off the CGC on Monday, 10 March, with an update on the EU’s Digital Agenda project. Thursday’s program will feature Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, and the CGC will close on Friday with a keynote address by Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales. Oliver Frese: “We’ve put a lot of effort into creating a truly captivating CGC program, and attendees have every reason to be excited about it.” Of course, the CeBIT event lineup goes far beyond the CeBIT Global Conferences. Over the five-day run of CeBIT, a flanking program of up to 1,500 presentations, lectures and workshops will be held in various special forums throughout the exhibition halls. For instance, there’s the FutureTalk forum in Hall 9, which will be opened by Dr. Johanna Wanka, Germany’s Federal Minister of Education and Research. Frese: “This year’s CeBIT will not only exceed all expectations as a knowledge transfer platform; it will also be the world’s biggest IT convention.”

According to Frese, the response from top-level managers from user companies has also been extremely positive: “Our visitor programs for senior decision makers with backgrounds in HR, finance and marketing are fully booked.” More than 1,500 top executives from 20 countries have registered for Deutsche Messe’s C-level events at CeBIT 2014 – a fourfold increase over last year.

This year’s contingent of young companies will also be bigger and more international than ever before. More than 300 start-ups from 17 nations will be represented at CeBIT 2014 – a record number. 50 of them will be in Hall 16 at the official stand of the international start-up competition CODE_n. In Hall 16, German Economics Minister Sigmar Gabriel will open the Young IT Day event on the first day of the show. Other important hubs for young companies at this year’s CeBIT include the Young & Innovative showcase and the International Start-Up Area in Hall 6.

Major international participation will in fact be one of the defining characteristics of CeBIT 2014. “It’s been over five years since the show last drew more than half of its exhibitors from outside Germany. This year, some 55 percent of the participating companies will be from outside Germany,” Frese explained. “The fair’s international composition also reflects the shift we’ve seen in the global IT markets, with participation from Asian and Eastern European countries well up.” Among all exhibiting nations, China leads the pack by a significant margin. Mr. Frese is also delighted with the upswing in the number of UK-based exhibitors: “Both the number of exhibitors from the United Kingdom and the amount of display area they have booked are up threefold. In all, Great Britain – this year’s Partner Country – will be fielding exhibits from over 130 companies.”

The number of B2B exhibitors – those who primarily target industry professionals – is up five percent on CeBIT 2013. Overall, more than 3,400 companies from 70 nations will be exhibiting at this year’s show. As Frese pointed out, this also constitutes a year-on-year increase. Beyond the show’s exhibitor lineup, over 100 enterprises and organizations will be contributing to CeBIT in other ways.

CeBIT 2014 will be officially opened this Sunday, on the eve of the first day of the event, in the presence of 2,500 invited guests from around the world. The Opening Ceremony at the Hannover Congress Centrum will feature keynote addresses by Germany’s Federal Chancellor, Dr. Angela Merkel, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron, and the Premier of the State of Lower Saxony, Stephan Weil. The IT sector will be represented on stage by BITKOM President Dr. Dieter Kempf. Also among the eagerly anticipated VIP speakers will be Dr. Martin Winterkorn, CEO of Volkswagen AG.

2014 marks the first time that CeBIT is focusing entirely and exclusively on a B2B audience. Exhibitors and their visiting clientele will also benefit from having an additional weekday on which to do business, thanks to the show’s new timeslot starting on a Monday. CeBIT 2014 is taking place in 14 halls featuring 9 overall display categories and 7 special showcases.