After a successful launch in October 2016 and an equally successful second edition in 2018, the third Italian Concrete Days are now coming up. These will take place from 29 to 31 October 2020 at the Piacenza Expo site. In this interview, Dr. Fabio Potestà, director of the organizer, Mediapoint & Communications S.r.L., answers the questions of the BFT Editor-in chief.
BFT International: Good afternoon, Dr. Potestà, what makes you so optimistic about the expected success of the third Italian Concrete Days?
Dr. Fabio Potestà: As you know, Covid-19 has adversely affected all exhibition organizers in every part of the world and, due to the almost immediate lockdown imposed by the Italian government, Italy is probably now the safest country in Europe. That said, due to the fact that all construction and concrete-related exhibitions taking place during 2020 have been postponed, GIC will be the first event in Europe with lots of equipment on display in the above market sectors, a fact which will definitely raise more attention especially from the thousands of companies which are now so anxious to meet their customers again after such a long time of lockdown. The Italian Concrete Days are the only Italian exhibition and conference fully dedicated to the concrete industry, technologies, plant, equipment and materials for concrete masonry, the refurbishment and demolition of concrete structures, the precast industry, concrete paving and screeds, and the recycling and transport of aggregates.
BFT International: Can you prove this with specific facts and figures?
Dr. Fabio Potestà: To be very honest, the third edition of the GIC was expected to be bigger and more international than the two previous editions, with an increased number of non-Italian exhibitors who booked extensive exhibition space last year both in individual booths and national pavilions. The forced stop caused by the spread of the coronavirus interrupted our sales activities for several months, but since July the number of exhibitors has started to rise again, currently reaching more than 120 confirmed exhibitors on an area of 8,000 square meters.
Considering that from early September 2020 Italian exhibition centers will again be able to host fairs and conferences, this progress into the recovery phase makes us confident that we will be able to reach at least 150 direct exhibitors at GIC 2020 which, so far, got the support of 50 Italian and international concrete-related associations, but also of the Italian Ministry of Infrastructure and Transportation headed by Ms Paola De Michelis, who is expected to lead the official opening of the show in the morning of 29 October.
BFT International: Are the Italian Concrete Days primarily a local event or rather an international trade fair?
Dr. Fabio Potestà: All new exhibitions always start to be more national than international, but our event has generated a number of international visitors since 2016, and this number has been growing constantly during the 2018 edition with industry professionals coming also from the United States, Latin America and the MENA region. As the GIC organizer, we wanted our event to be included in the special list of Italian shows of international relevance selected by the Italian Ministry of Economic Development (MISE), a mission that has been accomplished also because our event has been certified by ISFCERT, the Certification Institute for Exhibition Industry Statistics recognized by ACCREDIA. This is the best guarantee for both our national and international exhibitors and visitors.
BFT International: What can interested exhibitors and visitors who want to register last minute expect, besides the trade fair?
Dr. Fabio Potestà: As a Covid-19 consequence, all our commercial activities for the show, but also to organize conferences, seminars and workshops, are now extremely concentrated, and lots of companies did not have the chance to introduce and/or promote their new machines and technologies due to the long lockdown period. Most of the news will be in fact announced at GIC, brand new equipment and machinery will be put on display, and topics on latest technologies will be discussed during the conferences held alongside the exhibition (the program will be online from early October at our website gic-expo.it), and all this will increase the attractiveness of our event.
The opening general conference session scheduled immediately after the official opening of the show will deal with the new infrastructure plan foreseen by the Italian government and will include a session dedicated to the presentation of the new San Giorgio Bridge in Genova headed by the Mayor of Genova, Dr. Marco Bucci. In the evening of 29 October, there will also be the Italian Concrete Technology Awards (ICTA) event, during which Italian companies (or the Italian subsidiaries of foreign businesses) will receive the awards for their activities and innovations relevant to the previous 18 months. The event will take place in a prestigious historical location, which will be communicated in early October.
BFT International: Thank you very much, Dr. Potestà, for this interview. We wish you every success in hosting the third edition of the Italian Concrete Days!