Hannover Messe i början av april är världens största industrimässa. Med över 5 000 utställare och 220 000 besökare är det här en av de viktigaste platserna att synas på för verksamma inom industrisektorn. Detta år, 2019, var Sverige dessutom partnerland vilket satte ett extra fokus på de svenska innovationerna och bolagen.
De var även ett av bolagen som syntes i den svenska paviljongen ”The Sweden Co-Lab Pavilion”.
Där var det fokus på innovation, hållbarhet, digitalisering och globalisering till syfte att positionera Sverige, svenska företag och svenska lösningar som världsledande inom smart industri.
Vi frågade Viospatias VD Michael Fergusson om upplevelsen i Hannover, vilket du kan läsa om i intervjun nedan.
”- Hannover Messe was massive!”
Hi Michael and welcome back to Gotland! You have been representing you company Viospatia at Hannover Messe 2019. How was your overall impression?
– Thanks! It’s nice to be back. Hannover Messe was massive; the first day we were dropped off on the wrong side of the grounds and it took us 20 minutes to walk the 2km over to the Swedish Pavilion, passing an incredible number of displays and pavilions with all sorts of industrial robots, installations and anything you can think of related to industry.
It was an amazing experience to see so many companies at one place. The Swedish pavilion was all about collaboration, and while Viospatia did not have a demo station, a large number of big companies designed collaborative demos with smaller companies and startups.
Did you find any opportunities to meet potential customers?
– It was really nice to be free to wander around and meet people without feeling that I needed to stand beside a demo stand all day. I know another startup that managed to score their first large deal because they were able to go out and meet potential customers.
Is it not hard to reach out and get noticed in this huge messe with so many visitors and companies?
– If we had gone on our own and set up a small booth, I think we would have been lost in the crowd. As the official partner country, being part of the Swedish Pavilion with 131 other companies, the spotlight was really on Sweden. I met lots of people who were just coming up to the Startup Lab sign and asking about Swedish startups.
A lot of work was done by Business Sweden, Ignite and EEN to promote the startup companies, and it paid off with hundreds of matchmaking meetings.
There were also daily startup pitch sessions on the main-stage that were always kicked off by a high-ranking official and a panel discussion, and they combined it with fika to draw the tough mid-afternoon crowd with free food and coffee.
A challenge to pitch at Hannover Messe
You also got the chance to pitch for BME, a big industrial association in Germany. Any learnings from that experience?
– I did learn that I needed to re-think my pitch approach in this sort of environment. Without a screen in front of you to see your slides, you really don’t want to have to look backwards to orient yourself.
”I did learn that I needed to re-think my pitch in this sort of environment.”
The next day I pitched on the main stage at the Swedish Pavilion and it went really well; I had some great feedback from people in the audience afterwards.
Networking is key!
Michaels pro-tips to other start-ups attending these kind of events:
– Networking is the key to events like these. Go to every event you can find and do your research. I spoke with a number of people who I know my company can’t help, and while my company might not be a good fit for them, I always follow-up with recommendations for other companies I might know of that can help.
Also – free food is everywhere; find it and start conversations!
Viospatia är en del av SPG Summit. Läs mer om dem här.
Text: Lovisa Moberg/Science Park Gotland. Bilder: Shad Hallam/Flexegraph, Stina Lantz/Ignite, Business Sweden.