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Photo-Imaging Shows and Conferences : Koelnmesse’s New COO Brings photokina 2012 into Focus

January 31, 2012
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On October 1, 2011, the Koelnmesse completed its executive team when Katharina C. Hamma, 45, assumed the post of chief operating officer (COO). Hamma is responsible for the operations of the entire trade fair program in Cologne, as well as for the company’s sales, communications and services. An experienced trade fair manager, she is the third member of Koelnmesse’s top management team, which includes Gerald Böse, president and chief executive officer, and Herbert Marner, chief financial officer.

We recently had an opportunity to interview Hamma and ask her about the biannual photokina trade fair that will take place September 18-23, 2012 at the Koelnmesse in Cologne, Germany.

As the new COO of Koelnmesse, what are your goals for the next photokina?

The success of photokina will be the result of good teamwork. For this reason, I, along with the entire team, would like to see that photokina continues to be the most successful global imaging trade fair, as it has been for many years. In this regard, photokina will have to bring together all the important target groups. These primarily include international specialized trade and professional users.

Our goal is to further extend the significance of photokina as the most important trade fair for the photo-imaging industry. Therefore, we will do everything we can to make photokina so attractive that it represents a must-see for each professional visitor. To do this we have to further develop our high service standards and provide international visitors the opportunity to make their trade fair visit as effective as possible.

Do you view the current European debt crises as a threat that could weaken your event?

Certainly the economic crises in Europe will not make it any easier for trade fairs, but photokina is a strong international event that has such a high user value for visitors from all over the world that the European dept crisis will have no influence. photokina has proven this time and again since 1950. The best example of this is adapting to the change from analog photography to the total digitalization of the industry—one of the greatest challenges that the imaging sector has had to overcome.

Moreover, the imaging sector is very strong despite the debt crises. Thus the worldwide photo and imaging market reported a sales volume of around 133 billion euros, according to initial calculations by the GfK Group—one of the largest market research companies in the world—which represents an increase of around 4% as compared to 2009.



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