Despite long-standing professional antipathy, forgers and metalcasters now have a significant accomplishment they can share: the organizers of the CastForge exposition staged in June declared their first-ever event to be a success, with more than 150 exhibitors from 18 countries drawing the attention of 3,700 visitors to the convention center in Stuttgart, Germany. The reason for the success, apparently, was the common appreciation for the demands of manufacturing customers.
The CastForge concept has been suggested for decades, but only implemented in the context of the current global economic expansion. As a trade fair, the focus is not simply on producing forgings and casting, but on processing the products and supplying them to manufacturing customers. The exhibitors may encounter visitors involved in mechanical engineering, plant construction, automotive and drive technology, construction machinery, pumps, and hydraulic engineering, as well as general industrial businesses.
“Here at CastForge visitors have the opportunity to obtain precise information about their product requirements and issues,” stated Gunnar Mey, department director for Industrial Solutions with the event organizer. “With the clear commitment to the industry we managed to develop a convincing concept and close a gap in the trade fair landscape.”
For the attendees (product and material buyers representing mechanical engineering and plant construction, drive technology, commercial vehicle, as well as pump and compressor manufacturers), CastForge offered a new platform for researching the availability of high-quality, ready-to-install parts, either forgings or castings.
Those visitors came from 32 countries, and particularly from Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Austria and France, the high-volume manufacturing centers of Europe. Among the registrants, 32% indicated a role in procurement; 13% in corporate or operational management; and 12% in manufacturing, production, or quality assurance. Over 80% indicated specific intent to invest or purchase.
Exhibitors also were impressed with the event. Dirk Howe, Siempelkamp Giesserei GmbH managing director said CastForge “succeeded in representing the industry for castings and forgings in a condensed format. This is a big advantage for purchasers, among others, because they can obtain a comprehensive overview of the range of raw materials with only one trip.
“We held in-depth conversations and roughly 70% of the interested parties who exchanged information with us are potential customers,” he added.
Planners and exhibitors are now eyeing the next staging of the CastForge concept. According to Messe Stuttgart, the discussions include determining future events’ frequency and dates, along with the accompanying program and appropriate parallel events. However, the organizer offered assurance that CastForge “will be a permanent feature in (its) portfolio …”.