INTERVIEW – INHORGENTA to offer vast array of designs at 50th anniversary edition

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INHORGENTA, which will take place in Munich from February 16-19, 2024, will offer a vast and dazzling array of the latest jewellery designs, as well as the newest timepieces, and a huge assortment of loose diamonds and coloured gemstones, and accessories, at its 50th anniversary edition, while providing insightful educational opportunities on topical subjects in the jewellery and watches industry, Exhibition Director Stefanie Mändlein tells Jewellery Outlook Editor David Brough. 

Stefanie, what variety of goods will be on offer at INHORGENTA MUNICH?
Stefanie Mändlein: INHORGENTA represents the entire value chain. We are a platform for all genres and sectors, spanning Fine Jewelry, Timepieces, Lifestyle, Design, Gemstones and, since the first fair in 1974, Technology and Packaging as well. This range is presented clearly and concisely, allowing jewelers to gain an overview of the entire watch and jewelry market in the shortest possible time.

INTERVIEW – INHORGENTA to offer vast array of designs at 50th anniversary edition
INHORGENTA 2024 Preview
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Picture credit: INHORGENTA

What type of visitors does the show hope to attract?
Every trade visitor from the fields of jewelry, watches and technology is welcome! This includes all stationary and online specialist retailers such as jewelers, department stores, trend stores with lifestyle jewelry and watches, designer galleries, import/export/wholesale, sales agencies, gold and silversmiths, manufacturers and suppliers, as well as professional schools and universities and, of course, the media, be they press, bloggers or influencers.

Will there be any new exhibitors in February?
There will be more than a few! Many well-known international brands are celebrating their premiere or are returning, confirming our new concept. When it comes to exhibitors and exhibition space, we are currently experiencing significant growth of 15 percent.

We are very much looking forward to welcoming new exhibitors in all areas, for example Timepieces Ebel, Porsche Design, BA111AD, Cornavin, Poray, Doxa and Riba Watch in Hall A1. And the Salon Suisse has more than doubled in size compared to the previous year.

The Fine Jewelry division also recorded strong growth. More than 120 exhibitors will be presenting their products in Hall B1, including newcomers such as Schreiner Haute Joaillerie, La Brune & La Blonde, Artur Scholl and Recarlo. In the Lifestyle segment, one important new exhibitor is the Movado Group, with brands such as Boss, Boss Orange, Lacoste, Tommy Hilfinger, Calvin Klein or the exhibitors Xenox, Qudo, Maria Black. The new Wedding World in Hall B2 has also met with a great response, attracting 30 wedding ring suppliers.

But of course we are also delighted to welcome back our long-standing exhibitors such as Gellner, Krieger, Marco Bicego, Pasquale Bruni, Crivelli, Leo Pizzo, Schaffrath and Jörg Heinz. In the watch segment, these include brands such as Citizen, Casio, Junghans, Garmin, Mühle Glashütte, Tutima Glashütte, Victorinox and Mondaine. In the Lifestyle sector, for example, we will be welcoming Thomas Sabo, Christ, Amor, Coeur de Lion, Sif Jacobs, Bering and the Elysee Group. This is something we are very proud of.

INTERVIEW – INHORGENTA to offer vast array of designs at 50th anniversary edition
Picture credit: INHORGENTA

Will INHORGENTA be showcasing jewelry design trends?
Inhorgenta has been presenting design trends for many years. You will find them in our “brand new” area, for example, as well as in the goldsmith schools and contemporary design area in Hall B2. Of course, trends can also be found in the other segments.

However, while previous decades had clear product trends such as bicolor or platinum, in today’s pluralistic world there is a multitude of different products and styles. Naturally, our seminar program will cover the most important trends. It will feature German pioneer Saskia Diez and a masterclass from Katerina Perez, to name just two of over 35 experts.

What makes INHORGENTA MUNICH a “must-attend” event for international buyers?
INHORGENTA is Europe’s leading industry platform and therefore a must for every buyer. It’s a place where you can experience individual, high-quality and often elaborately crafted watches and jewelry. We have already talked about some important points such as the broad and diverse range of exhibitors and the trends.

INHORGENTA established itself at an early stage as the key to opening up new markets. As a result, the conditions for INHORGENTA 2024 are excellent.

Now that we have fundamentally revised the concept of INHORGENTA, the focus will be on the internationalization on the exhibitor and visitor side in future. It helps that today around 1,000 people in over 130 countries work for Messe München.

INTERVIEW – INHORGENTA to offer vast array of designs at 50th anniversary edition

Picture credit: INHORGENTA

What features are special and unique to the upcoming show?
There are actually too many to mention here! So, instead I’ll just highlight three. Firstly, INHORGENTA will be the first European jewelry fair to have a special area and program dedicated to weddings. More than 30 exhibitors, such as August Gerstner, Max Kemper, Meister, Niessing and Rauschmayer, will present themselves to buyers in the new “Wedding World”, which spans 4,000 square meters. There, they will show the wide variety of the market. Engagement and wedding rings are not only one of the most important sales drivers. They are also often the first contact with a jeweler, which can lead to a lifelong customer relationship.

The second highlight of INHORGENTA 2024 will be its 50th anniversary celebration with many activities, including the cutting of an anniversary cake and the honoring of exhibitors who have been present for 50 years. Three exhibitions will showcase the world of jewelry today and its 5,000-year history, as well as highlights from 50 years of INHORGENTA.

And thirdly, we have completely redesigned INHORGENTA, which is now being gradually unveiled, such as with the new corporate design by Mirko Borsche, the new website, a new visual language, until INHORGENTA starts on February 16 with a new spirit, new look and trading-up.

We are investing a lot in our customers’ trade fair success.

Could you name a few highlights of the seminar program?
We are expecting more than 35 industry experts, jewelry designers and journalists from Europe, Africa, America and Asia. They will include Helen Molesworth of the Victoria and Albert Museum, Molefi Lestiki, Chairman of the Diamond Dealers Club, South Africa, and Dr. Gaetano Cavalieri, President of the World Jewellery Confederation. Key themes will include sustainability and responsible sourcing, new luxury, historic jewelry and artificial intelligence.

Valerie Demure, White Bird, and Twist, three of the world’s best jewelers, will discuss the future of retail. Watches, of course, will be the focus of the Watch Talks. And, last but not least, notable influencers such as Robin Swithinbank and Katerina Perez will give masterclasses on topics such as storytelling on Instagram. There will be a lot going on, so it’s well worth coming for four days!

What opportunities for networking will the show offer?
The quest for meeting and networking has fundamentally changed the nature of exhibitions. INHORGENTA is the industry’s platform in Europe. Bringing the right people together is at the heart of our success.

Past editions of INHORGENTA have clearly shown that retailers, exhibitors, experts and the media have a need for meetings, personal exchange and inspiration. This was evident in the very busy catering areas, for example. We are convinced that it is crucial for this exchange to take place directly at the product.

Everything we do stems from considering how the exhibitors can present themselves, in which environment, what networking opportunities we offer, such as our new recruiting area, what information and supporting program we provide for the 25,000 or so trade visitors, what services we offer – and, above all, how we translate the special brilliance and emotion of the products into the entire trade fair experience.

INTERVIEW – INHORGENTA to offer vast array of designs at 50th anniversary edition

Picture credit: INHORGENTA

Will there be an awards evening? Can you tell us a bit more about this.
Yes, our INHORGENTA AWARD will be presented for the seventh time. It is considered the most important award in the industry and is equally coveted by jewelry designers, watch brands, jewelers and the gemstone industry.

The Gala will take place on Saturday evening, February 17, in a brand new location with visionary architecture, the Showpalast Munich. And I can promise you: It will be quite a show. We also have a new category, “Luxury Watch of the Year”, along with eight other categories. Exhibitors have until January 31 to submit their entries.

The jury features big names such as Katerina Perez, Stephen Webster, Anja Heiden from Wempe, Martin Julier from Bucherer, Sarah Fabergé, Gisbert Brunner, just to name a few. Of course, you can also buy a ticket or a table on our website to take part in this great gala event.

What is the significance of the timing of the show early in the New Year?
Having the date right at the beginning of the year means it is firmly anchored in the international trade fair calendar. It is ideal for exhibitors and kicks off the year for the entire industry. It’s a good time to present new highlights and trends, and a chance for retailers to stock up again.

What tips can you give visitors when it comes to organizing their accommodation and getting to and from the show?
There are a thousand and one reasons to visit INHORGENTA. For example, a day ticket now costs €19, which is less than a third of the regular price of €65 on site. Munich is also easy to reach by train or via Europe’s best airport.

An airport shuttle runs every half hour, making it very easy to get to and from the trade fair. There are many reasonably priced hotels and restaurants in the area. That may sound trivial, but it’s something that’s not always particularly easy at international jewelry fairs.

INTERVIEW – INHORGENTA to offer vast array of designs at 50th anniversary edition

Picture credit: INHORGENTA