CeBIT’s M2M presence, interview with Frank Poerschmann

The M2M sector is showing explosive growth this year, often pegged at a compound annual growth rate of over 20%. Our own M2M Zone Pavilion has more than doubled for this year’s CeBIT, making it–in some ways–the largest M2M event in all of Europe. With that in mind, we spoke with Frank Poerschmann, Global Head of CeBIT, for his take on M2M’s role at the show.


The M2M sector is showing explosive growth this year, often pegged at a compound annual growth rate of over 20%. Our own M2M Zone Pavilion has more than doubled for this year’s CeBIT, making it–in some ways–the largest M2M event in all of Europe. With that in mind, we spoke with Frank Poerschmann, Global Head of CeBIT, for his take on M2M’s role at the show.

CeBIT is huge, and some of your largest exhibitors (IBM, Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone) will have significant booth-space dedicated to M2M spread across the show. How can visitors interested in the subject make most efficient use of their time? Does CeBIT cross-reference the subject in some way?

CeBIT is clearly organized so that visitors find solutions quickly and easily. The four-platforms give CeBIT its basic structure, and within these four platforms visitors will find all related products, technologies and thematic highlights. Our myCeBIT tool at CeBIT.de enables visitors to efficiently plan and store their trip before they even arrive in Hannover. We offer online and on-site matchmaking programs as well as hosted buyer programs (http://www.cebit.de/en/information-for/visitors/matchmaking). Our online exhibitor search function quickly identifies the desired products and companies. For example, one can search by the keyword M2M and the search engine quickly returns the relevant results.

M2M applications often require international solutions. There’s a perception that there seems to be have been a reduction of the international environments at CeBIT. Is this correct? What does the show offer for visitors and exhibitors from overseas?

In 2010, 76,000 of our visitors came from outside of Germany (83 countries) and more than 50% of our exhibitors came from outside of Germany (68 countries). We also hosted more than 100 business delegations and more than 5,000 journalists and bloggers from all over the world. CeBIT moves the world marketplace forward. CeBIT drives innovation. CeBIT provides a look at the future. CeBIT is a real, not virtual, meeting place for the world’s ICT community. And CeBIT generates billions in investments. CeBIT is the most efficient way for exhibitors, visitors, and politicians to network and do business.

As wireless connectivity becomes as ubiquitous as wireline connectivity, IT departments are taking more responsibility for this connectivity, and subsequently, for M2M. Can you talk about this? Is the “C” in ICT becoming more important at CeBIT? How does this reflect itself at the show?

Communications, the “C” in ICT, has always been prominent at CeBIT. This is evident at the “Business Communications & Networks” sector of the fair, where we have approximately 500 exhibit stands.

One of the most interesting things about CeBIT for the M2M sector is that it draws visitors from diverse industrial sectors (especially compared to telecom or consumer shows). Can you give us an idea about how many CeBIT attendees come from the following sectors:

Automotive / Transportation: Approximately 9,000
Energy / Utilities: Approximately 6,000
Healthcare: Approximately 9,000
Financial / Banking: Approximately 10.000
Retail / Consumer Merchandising: Approximately 24.000

There was extensive news coverage of M2M from last years show – in the FAZ and Deutsche Welle, to name just two sources – what will CeBIT do to foster this kind of attention from the press, specifically for M2M?

We conduct worldwide public relations and advertising campaigns. Our network of subsidiaries, branches and representatives in more than 100 countries conducts press conferences, seminars and workshops worldwide. We also work extensively with international industry associations, political organizations and media partners.