Interview with Ivaylo Ivanov, procurator at Bulgarreklama Agency

Automation & RoboticsInterviewSouth-East European INDUSTRIAL Мarket - issue 3/2011

Mr. Ivaylo Ivanov
Executive Director in
Bulgarreklama Agency

Dear Mr. Ivanov, would you present your partner relations with ICM, Slovenia? What factors influenced your choice of a new partner and thematic development in your exhibition program for 2012?
As early as the first months of the coming year /February 28 - March 02, 2012 /, Inter Expo Centre -Sofia will hold the largest Balkan industrial exhibition, featuring six business themes of a technical character. We will have ICM from Slovenia as one of our partners in this spectacular initiative, in its capacity of an enterprise well-experienced in organizing technical shows up to European standards, working for many years in Slovenia, and in Serbia recently. We share a number of common goals with ICM, we are both members of UFI - The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, and of CEFA - Central European Fair Alliance, which is a key factor to join hands.

Ever since IEC opened to the public, we keep extending the exhibition themes,the dominant portion taken definitely by b2b specialized exhibitions. By way of initiating new exhibitions with ICM, we give prominence to a new segment, namely industrial equipment. As you know, innovations here are crucial for the successful development and to increase further competitiveness in key industries. There is a market demand for specialized exhibitions like this, and our decision was a logical outcome of our wish to close that gap. The range includes innovations in automation, mechanical engineering, robotics, electronics, metallurgy, machine building, as well as the latest achievements  in the plastics and rubber sectors.

As a result of your cooperation INTER EXPO CENTER (IEC) will host four new technical exhibitions in the beginning of the next year - IFAM, Intronika, MachTech & Metal and Plast Bulgaria, which will be held along with the approved Transportation and Logistics and Security - Privacy and Security. How the new shows will attract specialists to the halls of Inter Expo Center?
According to our concept on these industrial shows, the exhibits shall be displayed in four halls , thus expanding and enriching visitors’ options. Each hall shall have a seminar zone for organization of business forums and events - business meetings, lectures, demonstrations and presentations of new products, technologies and other company novelties. Apart from the well-known  information model, the specialized public (engineers, inventors, designers, engineering specialists, experts  and managers) would  be able to learn and witness the operation and efficacy of the innovations exhibited by their domestic and foreign colleagues.
The scale of the exhibitions and their format will anyway draw the attention of engineers and technical experts throughout the country.

All visitors will greatly benefit from meetings with recognized foreign companies that are well -established innovators in the industry. Due to our partnership with ICM, we expect a good number of companies make an initial try on the Bulgarian market.

The sector has a growth potential, and the Bulgarian industry would benefit from involving new participants - potential partners. Shifting focus towards modernization, automation and electronification of crucial industrial sectors and the construction of new facilities would need and would also benefit from the organization of specialized exhibitions, such as ours.
I take a good reason for my optimism from the fact that in parallel with our specialized exhibitions, we plan to hold a national discussion "Bulgarian Industry - the backbone of Bulgarian economy", highlighting machine-building. There will be debates on issues related to the technological and commodity capacities of Bulgarian industry, the gained market niches, human resources, public- private partnerships, research, good practices, etc.

Exhibitions organized at the Inter Expo Center are usually attended by experts and representatives of senior management. What audience are you looking to recruit for the upcoming new shows?
I don’t think the coming shows would be an exception as regards the group of  visitors you mentioned. This is where we can talk about the large scale of the initiative - from senior executives to specialized experts. The show will introduce recognized manufacturers , suppliers and distributors of new products and services from a number of countries, encouraging investments and innovation in open and competitive markets. We assume they would draw the adequate attention of people with extensive professional interests - from experts in  the field of food industry, textiles, pharmaceuticals, furniture industry or other sectors of industrial development, to professionals working on the development and implementation  of high tech in specific industries.

In this year Inter Expo Center marks 10 years anniversary since its establishment. Are you satisfied with the achieved results and which ones make you the most proud of?
Ten years ago , when the metropolitan Exhibition Complex opened to the public, we launched two exhibition halls and a few shows. We managed, by way of efficient teamwork, to expand the exhibition program as quickly as possible, so that we covered most of the economic sectors with  specialized shows. The workload was intensive and took effect - we gradually expanded the Centre and currently we have 6 exhibition halls, as well as a number of international events held at the Congress Centre. This is how our initial concept for 4 halls was further developed, we followed the demand of business and came up to their needs with our investment plans.