Highly international mix of attendees
More than 65 percent of the event's 45,000 visitors came from abroad – around 60 percent of them coming from Europe, with some 25 percent from Asia and 11 percent from the Americas. Attendance from the United States and South and Central America increased. The majority of DOMOTEX visitors were buyers from specialist retailers and wholesalers as well as architects and interior designers and workers from the skilled trades. A strong increase in attendance was particularly evident among home furnishing and furniture stores, architects, interior designers, contract floorers and skilled tradesmen. As usual, DOMOTEX visitors once again demonstrated a high degree of decision-making authority.
Visitors were delighted at the many innovations on display. "SÜDBUND takes part in DOMOTEX every year. This time we organized our first-ever delegation trip to DOMOTEX for our members. We're thrilled about all the inspiration we were able to gather, including insight into the latest floor covering advancements and trends. It's already clear to us that we'll be back with an even larger delegation in 2019," said Michael Kovac, Purchasing Manager for Floor Coverings & Accessories at SÜDBUND – the Purchasing Association for Home Textiles based in Backnang, Germany).
Strong contributions by architects and designers
The rich supporting program of talks and presentations on the keynote theme provided further inspiration, and met with a very enthusiastic response on the part of exhibitors and visitors alike. Among the featured speakers were such renowned architects as Werner Aisslinger (Studio Aisslinger, Berlin), Andreas Krawczyk (NKBAK, Frankfurt/Main), Chris Middleton (KINZO, Berlin) and Jürgen Mayer H. (J.MAYER.H and Partners, Berlin). Intriguing architecture and design projects were presented and discussed, covering everything from initial conceptualization to the design process and on to production and sales strategies. Daily guided tours led by big-name architects and designers such as Peter Ippolito (Ippolito Fleitz Group, Stuttgart), Jürgen Mayer. H. (J.MAYER.H and Partners, Berlin) and Susanne Schmidhuber (SCHMIDHUBER, Munich) gave visitors special insight into products and the show's keynote theme while putting them in direct touch with exhibitors of particular interest to them.
The talks given by the internationally acclaimed interior design blogger and author Holly Becker from Decor8 also met with very enthusiastic audiences. Becker explained how DOMOTEX exhibitors could collaborate with bloggers to raise the market profile of their products. Together with other well-known bloggers, she also delved into the topic of tomorrow's furnishing trends. The use of virtual reality as an interior design tool was an equally exciting topic in Hall 9, where many visitors donned virtual reality glasses to experience the many possible uses and benefits of this new technology.
Further inspiration was provided by the "Art Day Workshops" staged within the context of Framing Trends by Canadian design firm Creative Matters. Participants were invited to experiment with colors, coal, tint and wax on paper to create fresh new designs pertaining to the keynote theme, UNIQUE YOUNIVERSE. At the so-called floorCODES WorkLabs held by the Institute of International Trend Scouting (of the University of Applied Research and Art, Hildesheim, Germany), participants had an opportunity to apply the institute's "IIT HAWK" method to generate visionary scenarios for the future of floor coverings.