A great exhibition is born in Italy
After three days of intense activity, on the grounds of the great Fiera Milano (Rho), and within the alliance that represents MIBA, finished the first edition of GEE, which promises to return increased by the end of 2025.
Milan is the second most populated city in Italy, after Rome, with 1,352,000 inhabitants. Located in the Lombardy region, in the north of the country, bordering the Alps, it is the economic and industrial capital of Italy. It is the first smart city in Europe and now the European capital of 5G, a leader in sustainability. In 2008, INSSE estimated the city’s GDP at 366 billion euros, the second in Europe after the Paris region.
It is a cosmopolitan, modern city, a world center of fashion and good taste. In Milan, the Duomo coexists with iron and glass skyscrapers, and its wealth is not only economic but also artistic and cultural, as it contains historical buildings and wonderful works of art, among which is “The Last Supper” by Leonardo Da Vinci, the greatest painter of the Italian Renaissance. Leonardo lived in Milan for almost 20 years, between 1482 and 1500, working for Ludovico Sforza, the Duke of Milan who made this city shine and gave it the economic splendor that it enjoys to this day.
The second country with the most elevators in Europe
According to ANACAM, National Association of Elevator Manufacturing and Maintenance Companies, the elevator trade generated a turnover of 3.8 billion euros in Italy in 2022, directly employing 19,000 workers by 1,900 companies of different sizes (from small and artisanal to large multinationals). With 14.7 elevators per thousand inhabitants, Milan had its Lift fair until not many years ago and it was interrupted when they decided to attend foreign fairs as a delegation.
However, this past November, the elevator exhibition returned with GEE, which stands for Global Elevator Exhibition for Horizontal and Vertical Mobility, one of the four MIBA exhibitions. This was the joint of four interdisciplinary exhibitions: MADE EXPO, the construction event; SICUREZZA, the Italian and European exhibition for fire safety and prevention; SMART BUILDING EXPO, the reference for home automation.
United Kingdom) and from Turkey and China. But others also arrived from distant places like Venezuela, Vietnam, Azerbaijan, Singapore, Thailand, and Senegal to appreciate the offers of more than 1,350 exhibiting companies.
For this MIBA specially invited 427 international buyers from 72 countries, who were selected in cooperation with the ITA-ICE Agency.
The competitive MIBA and GEE, as the exhibition of lifting means, seem to have been found in the Fiera Milano is the ideal place to attract an audience that is increasingly compelled to choose from so many elevator fairs in the world.
Among elevator exhibitors, the most represented countries were France, Italy, Spain, Greece, and Türkiye.
In this way, those present at MIBA exhibitions, not only were able to visit the stands of the 1,250 exhibitors coming from 41 countries, but they were also able to access the stands of more than 120 exhibitors of elevators, escalators, moving walkways, all types of components of the brand new GEE, and learn about and acquire essential elements for manufacturers, maintenance companies, architects, maintenance managers of every kind of buildings.
A singular fact is that, among the companies that were present, Schindler, Kone, and Thyssen, are multinationals that do not normally appear at any exhibition and were the ones that gave GEE a huge boost in its debut, along with the multinational Fermator. However, they were others that also graced the busy halls of the exhibition such as WECO, Gervall, Edel, Kleemann, Monteferro, Moris, Omar Lift, Prisma, Sicor, Giovenzana, Orona, Sodimas, among many others.
Comments by Paola Sarco
In an interview with Revista del Ascensor, Paola Sarco, Directora of GEE and the Building Unit of Fiera Milano said that “GEE is a fact that had to do with the demand of the sector who wanted to have its elevator exhibition again in Milan. The singularity and success of this commitment are due to the good idea of putting together the elevators with the construction (ME MADE); with security (SICUREZZA); and with automation (SMART BUILDING EXPO), in a single exhibition that make up the MIBA. In this way, the architect, the installer, the maintenance manager, the builder, and the engineer, find everything they need for the building in one only place. For its part, the construction industry, to which the elevator is inextricably linked, plays a very important role in the transition towards energy sustainability in Europe and the world In general, by lowering carbon emissions, lowering water and power consumption”.
“The fact that GEE is located in Milan – Paola clarifies – gives it a great strategic advantage because it is a city where 42 million passengers enter per year through three airports. Milan is a cutting-edge city, intelligent in terms of its technology. Many B2B events take place simultaneously in Milan and the Fiera Milano (rho) where it takes place adds modernity and good equipment in terms of infrastructure”. “When the opportunity of MIBA and its three fairs related to Building, Security and Automation showed up, we did not think about it and decided to go because the market came to us and demanded an exhibition, and we already see the result – commented the director of GEE -, in the second day of the Fair. We asked Paola if the response obtained had been a surprise, to which she responded that it wasn’t “Is not a surprise, she said “because we worked for this; the fact of being together with the other exhibitions helped a lot because in that way a large number of people were attracted: Professionals who don’t work on elevators but are related to them such as architects, engineers, building designers, contractors, maintenance company owners, and everyone who makes decisions about elevators. “But, yesterday it was a surprise, she added, for everyone present to see how many interested people were there. I must also say that we have a buyers program, for which we have an office who is very efficient in selecting the invited people. We have high standards for this exhibition. We have invited about 100 all-expenses paid visitors to attract the right people to GEE: Entrepreneurs who come from the USA, Argentina, Egypt, Australia the United Arab Emirates, and Europe. Therefore, it will continue to be always. It is a large part of the Fair’s budget but, as I said, we do it to make sure our exhibitors will have the buyers they need, and the fair will have the right journalists who will talk about it.
GEE will be held every two years and the next edition will be in November 2025. For two years, agents from the GEE organization will once again travel around the world to bring companies to the event. In addition, Fiera Milano has a partnership with Shanghai where it organizes exhibitions.
“It would be very good if Latin Americans were encouraged to travel a little more, because this represents a new concept, and if they did not came they would be missing out on finding opportunities in one place, not only for elevators, but also for construction, security, home automation, and building intelligence. There are other excellent fairs in the world, but they are exclusively for elevators; here there is much more, it is a different project. Most hotel chains send their managers to find everything they need, without traveling so much.”
The event that started the exhibition the morning of November 14 was the forum “Future of Cities: Between Innovation, quality of Life, sustainability and public-private Participation” which took place in the Red Lounge of the Fiera Milano Service Center.
The personalities invited to talk, among whom were representatives of the Fiera Milano and Government representatives, spoke of the exhibition organized by MIBA as a new and revolutionary phenomenon that represents the cutting edge of the construction industry for the world. In a historical moment of uncertainty, they commented, the Fiera provides simplification by bringing together in one place what construction needs. An exhibition with 1,200 exhibitors, which begins with an international spirit, with collaboration from 72 countries in the world, not only offers products, they said, but also exchange and discussion between businessmen and women. It was heard that “In this fair you will be able to discuss, confront and experiment, seeing this whole new world together. We work on a real estate asset of more than 4,000 million euros, which will increase with time”.
Between November 15 and 17, the conferences given at the Fair emphasized sustainability, accessibility and safety. Among others, here are the titles of some of them:
Market trends: The future of vertical transportation 2023-2033. What are the development possibilities? What are the new challenges to modernizing the elevator park? What is the role of the sector to increase the safety and sustainability of the buildings of the future?
KONE DX: The digital elevator for smart and sustainable buildings.
Accessibility and inclusivity: Rethinking places and buildings.
The Global Elevator: Comparative experiences of the world.
The digitalization of elevators: A path of innovations and sustainability.
Predictive maintenance for gearless machines for elevators: The Sicor proposal to handle the best as possible the traction machine.
New technologies to build more inclusive, safe, digital, and sustainable 4.0 buildings: What are the solutions and future evolution scenarios in the field of integrated elevator engineering and digitalization system.
Global perspectives in the elevator market: Challenges and opportunities for the future of Roland Berger.
Certification and new qualitative standards such as guarantee of safety and efficiency and others.
Wonderful events, such as the visit to the Palazzo Sforzesco or the presentation of the great Architect Daniel Liebeskind will be the subject of the next edition.