Nearly 50 Canadian manufacturers filled bauma’s Canada pavilion
At the recent record breaking bauma, manufacturers from Canada were able to stand out in the crowd of about 3,700 exhibitors from 63 countries.
bauma, held April 8 to 14 in Munich, Germany, selected Canada as its partner country for the 32nd edition of the trade show.
The partner country designation delivered a Canadian-specific pavilion, a lounge dedicated to networking with Canadian companies, as well as two Canada days highlighting Canadian construction and mining.
While the number of exhibitors set a record for the show, so did the number of visitors. More than 620,000 people passed through the bauma gates this year, about 40,000 more than the 2016 event and the highest in its 65-year history.
“For the industry, bauma is by far the world’s most important innovation platform and economic engine, something that we clearly saw this year,” said Klaus Dittrich, Chairman and CEO of Messe München.
“Particularly in these times of sweeping technological change that is being triggered by digitalization, bauma provides the industry with security and confidence.”
The Canada spotlight
For JA Larue, one of about 50 Canadian manufacturers, bauma’s spotlight provided the opportunity to find new distributors in new countries.
“It definitely gives us some exposure to new markets, which is what we’re here for,” said David Robichaud, international and dealer sales for JA Larue. “It’s not the end user we will meet here, it’s more the distribution network.”
Alongside manufacturers, Canada was represented by Stéphane Dion, the Ambassador and former Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Jonatan Julien, the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources of the Bavarian partner province of Quebec.
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In preparation for the Canadian focus, JA Larue worked with the federal and Quebec government to develop possible new business contacts. The governments provided various support from finding private meeting space to arranging translators.
“They actually set up meetings with other companies. All of the consulate staff have made themselves available in any shape or form,” Robichaud said.
“Working with Canada and Quebec, we couldn’t turn it down.”
With a customer base already spanning six continents, JA Larue was also able to meet face to face with some of its clients.
“I have customers that came to see from Russia to Serbia,” Robichaud said.
Aby Schneider, managing director of business development for Thor Global, explained the Canada/bauma partnership is an advantage for first time exhibitors.
“For many companies that have never been to bauma, it can be overwhelming to come and set up,” Schneider said, who attended bauma for the fifth time.
“It’s a more predictable experience if you come as part of a pavilion.”
Canadian ice breaker
Lisa Barbieri, vice president of marketing and customer experience for CM Labs Simulations, explained their booth in the Canadian pavilion served as an ice breaker with possible new leads.
“I do think the focus on Canada helps the brand in general. I do think there’s more of a general relationship ease, especially with German companies,” Barbieri said.
“I’m always looking at barriers to the conversation. … I find there’s a de-risk element.”
Luis Rodriguez, senior technical advisor for Petro Canada, added Canada’s international reputation helped boost the spotlight created via the pavilion.
“In general, the country Canada is very popular, so it’s always good, especially in Germany,” Rodriguez said. “The people, they connect Canada with nature and with a very positive image.”