DREMA 2022: a trade fair for solution leaders, not only for machine manufacturers
Participation in trade fairs, especially such prestigious ones as the International Trade Fair of Machines, Tools and Components for the Wood and Furniture Industries, is becoming more and more important every year. This is mainly because trade fairs are an excellent opportunity for reality checks. On the Internet anything can be said, but at trade fairs every word should be proven. What can be said about the Polish wood and furniture industries after the last edition of DREMA?
“This year’s edition was unique for three reasons. First, DREMA is developing faster after the pandemic hiatus. We doubled the exhibition area, and the number of people visiting DREMA exceeded 10.000. Second, we impressed our foreign visitors (coming from countries such as Turkey, Italy, the United Kingdom, Germany, Lithuania, Ukraine, the Czech Republic, Austria, France, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, the Netherlands, Ireland, Israel, Moldavia, Norway, Romania, Spain or Sweden) with the multitude of solutions and technological innovations developed by Polish engineers. Third, it was the time of well-deserved rest from rapidly rising inflation, struggle for resources, and the challenges that Polish furniture manufacturers and carpenters have to deal with on a daily basis. The fair also provided an opportunity to help those in need,” says Andrzej Półrolniczak, director of the DREMA trade fair. “The exhibition in Poznań was also appreciated by the European Federation of Woodworking Machinery Manufacturers, EUMABOIS. The Federation approved a list of the world’s most important exhibitions of woodworking machinery and tools, which received their recommendation for 2023. Among the 12 awarded, DREMA was the only event held in Poland,” he adds.
Leaders of solutions, not only manufacturers of machines
During the COVID-19 crisis, the wood industry recorded unexpectedly good financial results, and the DREMA fair, as one of the few exhibitions in the world, took place according to the schedule. In 2021, all major segments of the wood industry reported profitability and earnings above average and most of them also improved their financial results in the first half of 2022.
The industry made use of this period to enhance already-existing solutions and create new ones, which was proven in the competition for the Gold Medal of the DREMA 2022 Trade Fair. The competition’s jury awarded 13 prizes. The Gold Medals were given to the most innovative and technologically advanced products:
- 4-AXIS CNC TORMAT.JOKER ATC PROCESSING CENTER produced by DINCMAK Machine
- ABRYS SYSTEM B2B online - a complete solution for the ABRYS wholesale, Maciej C. Rezner
- VHM V406.XB spiral cutter, developed by N-POL, Krzysztof Noga, N-POL, Cutting Tools
- Hargassner ECO-HK 30 kW wood chip boiler entered for the competition by RAKOCZY STAL sp. z o.o. and manufactured by HARGASSNER Ges mbH
- CNC line for assembly of armrests (parts of upholstered furniture frames) from BizeA Sp. Z o.o.
- Mobile wood and biomass waste incineration system made by FCC innowacje sp z o.o.
- Salvapush 2000 Optimizer produced by SALVAMAC sp. z o.o.
- CZP-2/ZM type vertical double head band saw machine manufactured by W-IREX Przedsiębiorstwo Prywatne Wiesław Ciura
- TTS-1200 band saw developed and manufactured by PPHU TRAK-MET Zbigniew Skillandat
- RazorCut – PLUS circular saws for cutting wood-based panels individually and as a package with ultra HW blade made by Leitz GmbH & Co. KG – manufacturer
- RC SYSTEM table - a station for precise drilling of furniture formats and the method of drilling a furniture format developed by ROTOR-CENTRUM s.c. Bogdan Ostachowicz, Agata Ostachowicz, Małgorzata Kubicka
- 5AXIS PRO+ 4.0 automated machining center produced by SERON Spółka z ograniczoną odpowiedzialnością Sp. K.
- BIZON pneumatic carpentry staplers for construction staples type 14 BIZON 14/40-B74 and 14/50-B81 manufactured by BizeA Sp. Z o.o.
The comprehensiveness for which the Poznań exhibition is famous was also evident in the portfolio of a growing number of companies. The development of the offer, backed by appropriate marketing activities, is one of the potential solutions that Bank Pekao S.A. 's experts propose for the current and future crises. Experts emphasize that what Polish manufacturers still lack is effective marketing, and this is true both at the level of individual companies and the entire industry or even the country.
Exceptions prove the rule, and exhibitors awarded the Acanthus Aureus statuette are excellent role models in terms of the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and effective use of their presence at trade fairs. This year, the award went to: WEINIG VERTRIEB UND SERVICE GMBH & CO. KG, DREWNEX, BizeA Sp. z o.o., PUREKO SP. Z O.O., SALVAMAC SP. Z O.O., HOMAG POLSKA SP. Z O.O., Leitz-Polska Sp. z o.o., Turan Metal Koltuk Mekanizmaları, WIREX Sp. z.o. and Abrasives Group. As the authors of the latest report on the wood industry note, the element necessary to increase the competitiveness of Polish manufacturers is also the extensive use of modern communication channels and the improvement of the so-called user experience, i.e. the simplification of the sales process. That is why Industry 4.0 must go hand in hand with Marketing 5.0.
In terms of quality, Polish wood products are rarely ever second to those of Western competitors. However, the advantage of domestic business in many areas is usually determined by low prices. In an environment of omnipresent cost pressures, one of the steps to protect the margins of woodworking companies may be to attempt to enter the production of more advanced products or to premiumize it, i.e. to move their offers to higher price shelves. Here it becomes essential to participate in trade fairs.
The shift in focus to an audience less sensitive to product prices also requires a focus on quality, interesting design and building brand reputation. The DREMA fair, which no longer exists without technologies facilitating mechanization and automation of production processes, will also undergo a transformation under such circumstances. The company’s presence at a trade fair will send a significant signal to potential customers about the quality of the exhibitor's products.
It is hard to deny that trade fairs are also a place where companies compete for customers' attention and showcase their marketing skills. One of the most common questions that came up behind the scenes and the keynote of the 7th National Furniture Congress was "How to increase profitability during new challenges?". According to the forecasts presented at the Congress by Tomasz Wiktorski, the owner of B+R, in 2022 Polish furniture industry will grow by 8% to a value of PLN 64.7 billion. The beginning of the crisis will be reflected in the numbers in 2023, when the value of furniture production sold will reach 59.5 billion PLN, decreasing by 8%. According to the forecast, the next year should bring a rebound in the form of 5% growth. The expected value of sold furniture production in 2024 is 62.5 billion PLN. This means that in the event of very high inflation, a significant increase in energy prices, a shortage of raw materials, and a decline in demand, even the resilient and crisis-proof Polish furniture industry cannot escape noticeable damage.
The experts present at the Congress emphasized the importance of teamwork, investment in employee development and building long-term relationships to overcome the crisis. The fact that the wood and furniture industries are joining forces in the face of adversity is proven by the efforts of the Polish Economic Chamber of the Wood Industry (PIGPD) and the Polish Chamber of Commerce of Furniture Manufacturers in recent months
This was also confirmed by the DREMA for children in Ukraine charity event organized by the Association of Manufacturers of Woodworking Machinery, Devices and Tools, DROMA, the University of Life Sciences in Poznań, the Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology of the University of Life Sciences in Poznań, PIGPD and the MTP Group.
“The responsiveness to the situation of the vulnerable and the commitment with which DREMA exhibitors responded to the proposal to organize a Live Furniture Factory are moving. This year we produced furniture for Ukrainian children living in orphanages. Initially, we assumed it would be 30 sets: beds with mattresses, closets and wall shelves. Thanks to the use of robots and the latest technological advances, this goal was achieved on the first day of the fair. In the end, we produced as many as 100 sets,” concluded Krzysztof Wiaderek, the coordinator of the charity event.
The following people, organizations and companies were involved in the Live Furniture Factory event: students from the Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology of the University of Life Sciences in Poznań, students from Zespół Szkół Budowlano-Drzewnych im. Bolesława Chrobrego in Poznań, ABRASIVES GROUP, Astor Kawasaki Robotics, BizeA, Drukarnia Rożak Etykiety, Felder Group Polska, Fide, Firma Patora, Genpol, Hettich Polska, INFOTEC CNC, Ita Tools, Jowat Polska, Lech Fabrics, MAT-TAR, Meble WERSAL, MG Machines, Opakomat, OVVO, Pfleiderer Polska, Ramaro, REHAU Polska, REMA, SIMALFA, TECH-FA-MILER, Top Solid Wood, Top Solution, Virutex.
The next edition of the DREMA International Trade Fair of Machines, Tools and Components for the Wood and Furniture Industries will be held on September 12-15, 2023 at the premises of the Poznań International Fair.