Skip to content

Hannover Messe: Powerhouse Event or Wake-Up Call?

Over the last 25+ years, Enigma has established an undeniable presence at some of the world's biggest exhibitions - but one event is now becoming a more permanent fixture in the company diary: it's the Hannover Messe, and it’s quite the experience.

Created in post war Germany in 1947, everything about Hannover Messe is, frankly, epic. Occupying 392,453 m² (4.2 million sq. ft.) of covered indoor space, 58,000 m² (624,306 sq ft) of open-air space, 24 halls and pavilions plus a convention centre with 35 function rooms, Hannover Messe is the largest exhibition ground in the world.

Image ©️ Hannover Messe

And it needs to be big.

In 2024, over 130,000 visitors from 150 countries attended the event. That means over two thirds of the countries on our planet were represented in some way, with more than 4,000 companies participating. The socio-political sector was also there in force with over 300 political and economic deputations attending.

Also, just to give you an idea of the global giants that inhabit the halls at the Hannover Messe, when you combine the 2023 turnover of just three exhibitors, namely Siemens, Bosch and SAP, the figure you get is $240 billion dollars.

The theme of sustainability guided many exhibit designs at Hannover Messe 2024

Unlike exhibitions such as Mobile World Congress or the Consumer Electronics Show, Hannover Messe combines a spectrum of heavyweight industrial manufacturing technology with next-gen automation, energy efficiency and artificial intelligence solutions. The sheer scale of the show has continued to grow and evolve, and the size of the experiential spaces and stands present this year reached towards the roof of the Messe. 

The theme this year was "Energizing a Sustainable Industry", which is no great surprise considering that governments all over the world are taking positive steps to reduce carbon emissions and build more sustainable economies and societies.

Siemens' impressive floor-to-ceiling exhibit conveyed multiple sustainability solutions

What was clear was that many global industry experts and leading academics are warning that the steps being taken to protect our planet need to be more effective, coordinated and more frequent.

One briefing from Schneider Electric, the $36 billion energy and automation solution provider, was very telling. According to their research, the planet’s population will increase by 1.5 billion in just over 15 years. As a result, 3.6 billion of the planet’s population will live in areas of the globe that will be highly susceptible to the effects of climate change. 

Schneider Electric staunchly support renewable energy sources and ultra-efficient manufacturing processes

This population growth will, of course, lead to millions more young people expecting, even demanding, more digitally connected environments and ecosystems in which to learn, live and play. That means more wireless infrastructure, more data centres, more smart cities and therefore an ever increasing need for energy and power.

These global trends, though concerning, were met with optimism by many of the key spokespeople at the event.

Amazon Web Services demonstrated how their Supply Chain is transforming multi-stage delivery businesses

Dr. Gunther Kegel, Chairman of the HANNOVER MESSE Exhibitor Advisory Board described this year’s event “as a key morale booster.” He went on to say, “We can confidently take on major social challenges such as curbing global warming if we adopt the right measures and consistently pursue the path towards electrification, digitalization and automation.”

So it would seem that the Messe showcased the technology and direction that we need to take to make our planet safer for all who live on it - but the responsibility to do the right thing does not just fall on global giants.

This year's show massively emphasised carbon-neutral production and hydrogen fuel cells. Image ©️ Xinhua.

Our industry, the exhibition and events industry can do more to reduce our carbon footprint and increase the sustainability of the way we work. To do so, we need to look again at the way we design, transport and build the experiential spaces we provide for our clients.

To this end, official Partner Country Norway strongly upheld the theme of Hannover Messe as they presented products and solutions including batteries, carbon capture and storage; energy systems and artificial intelligence, Industry 4.0 and materials technology. The Norway Pavilion also exhibited safe solutions for hydrogen generation, transport, storage and distribution, with daily stage presentations on topics like clean energy, green data centres, industrial transformation and offshore wind power.

Their message, and that of the show as a whole, is that now is the time to act.

READ NEXT: How Do We Achieve Real Sustainability in the Global Events Industry?


Norway was the official Partner Country for Hannover Messe 2024. Image ©️ Hannover Messe.

Enigma creates award-winning custom builds for events, trade shows, 3D exhibitions, museums, interiors and more, bringing effective design solutions to physical and digital spaces. Get in touch with us for a free consultation about how we can help your brand.