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Re-igniting business

Re-igniting business in a disrupted construction ecosystem

The role of exhibitions in building back better

An opinion piece by Josine Heijmans, Vice President - Construction at dmg events


Last week, two major global exhibitions, IDEX in Abu Dhabi and Gulfood in Dubai, opened their doors to thousands of exhibitors from over 85 countries - restoring confidence that, with the right safety measures in place, live events remain a crucial platform for commercial growth and renaissance in the new normal.

The need to re-ignite business and strengthen companies’ financial standings to secure jobs and ensure a solid outlook is stronger than ever. After so much disruption, with shattered supply chains, merges and acquisitions, and closure of longstanding businesses, industry players are confronted with an unfamiliar construction ecosystem.


Reconnecting with today’s industry stakeholders is possibly the first and most critical step toward a robust performance. The present we live in requires people to come back together and exhibitions are going to play a fundamental role in this sense. Events will not only help establish or re-establish connections: they will generate the innovative ideas and help develop the skills that are essential for businesses to be successful in the next normal and be ready for tomorrow.

A lot can be achieved when the entire industry gets together in one place. Beyond securing clients and partners’ loyalty, exhibitors can create a solid network based on personal relationships, gather intel on upcoming business opportunities and new projects, check first-hand what their competitors are up to, receive immediate feedback from the public, and show to industry stakeholders that they are open for business.

This is the time to generate new leads and powerful ideas, explore new markets, gain visibility, and understand where the construction sector is heading to after a year of unprecedented disruption.

Covid-19 has scaled back frequent travels and close contacts, but it also taught us a few very important lessons, namely that we are stronger together because effective solutions to the toughest challenges can only emerge through collaboration. And that human interaction is essential for our personal wellbeing but also for business success: brands and companies are not inanimate objects; they are made by people, for people.


The world is changing, and so too do exhibitions. With the health and safety of participants at the top of our mind, future exhibitions are going to provide marketing initiatives that will effectively address today’s challenges.

A once buy-and-sell only platform, events are going to be powerful community builders offering a set of year-long branding, sales, and business development opportunities. More than ever before, they will be the place where experiences, ideas, partnerships, and new business take shape.