Premiere MedtecLIVE with T4M: New trade fair format with successful start in Stuttgart
The merger of the MedtecLIVE and T4M trade fairs celebrated its successful premiere in Stuttgart from May 3 to 5, 2022.The hybrid trade fair format succeeded in connecting the important medical technology regions in southern Germany and, with more than 430 exhibitors from 23 countries in Europe and the world, also created a platform for personal exchange and networking in the medical technology industry at an international level.
The international orientation and the mapping of the entire value chain in the medtech industry, with a clear focus on manufacturing, have made the trade fair an attractive meeting place, with exchange and knowledge gain at its core. Because in addition to networking, the top topics of the industry were also on the agenda in discussions and a large number of sessions: from digitalisation to regulatory affairs to production and processes.
Britta Fünfstück, CEO of the Hartmann Group in Heidenheim, pointed out the current challenges of the medtech industry in supply chains in a concluding panel discussion with Bavarian State Secretary Roland Weigert from the
Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy and State Secretary Dr. Patrick Rapp from the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Tourism: "We are heavily regulated and cannot simply switch to another supplier if one fails. That can easily take over a year. The fact is, there are incredibly big risks. We are trying to build up massive inventory. That also applies to the final products for our customers."
The hybrid concept of the event with an extensive online platform was also well received: 84 percent of the online participants were on site on at least one day. The digital offering with all recorded lectures and the large exhibitor database is still available to visitors after the fair.
A medical device is producedA complete production line proved to be a visitor magnet. In the centre of the hall, the interaction of the individual exhibitors became vivid for the visitors, the entire production process up to sterile packaging could be understood by example, and regulatory requirements, e.g. labelling, could be vividly explained. For this purpose, manufacturing companies from their area of expertise joined forces. This made the complexity of the production process visible. The guided tours every 30 minutes were always well attended.
In the fair forum there were discussions, presentations and award ceremonies for start-ups and talents in the industry on all three days. Veronika Spieker, Sebastian Dörrich and Alexander Schneider were honoured with the MedtecLIVE Talent Award for their final theses and won attractive prizes. The Neurotechprize from EIT Health and Biogen went to two start-ups: Five Lives from France and Neurocast from the Netherlands. The two companies can look forward to prize money of 100,000 and 50,000 euros respectively.
A spirit of optimism prevailed in the Start-up Area: the young spirit of research and positive innovative power have a noticeably great influence on the entire industry. "Many companies did not even know what is already possible today. MedtecLIVE with T4M offers an optimal platform for this exchange," Dr. Julian Lotz, CEO of the bioplastics manufacturer BIOVOX, sums up. His company produces plastics that are low in CO2, naturally renewable, completely degradable and recyclable. Thanks to functionalisations such as metal-free antimicrobial effect, these can also be used in medical technology.
The numerous large joint stands, including those of the VDMA, VDWF, Swiss Medtech, MedicalMountains, Bayern Innovativ and Brainport Industries, were also well attended. They facilitated an optimal exchange and ensured networking among the participants and within the industry, and offered companies the opportunity to participate in the fair as part of the joint participation. Niklas Kuczaty, Managing Director of the VDMA Medical Technology Working Group, drew a satisfied balance: "We wanted a medtech trade fair in the south, where manufacturing and production technology is in the focus. From the industry's point of view, I can say: we have achieved our goal. We have made the new start. Now we are on a very, very good path."
Very well frequented guided tours offered visitors a compact overview of important key topics such as start-ups, automation of medical device manufacturing or regional clusters.
High satisfaction among exhibitorsAfter two years without personal exchange, all participants were looking forward to the new joint medical technology format. For Hereaeus Amloy Technologies, the presence at the trade fair was a premiere. The manufacturer of amorphous alloys - new, biocompatible materials - which was only spun off from the Heraeus Group in 2019, looks back on good contacts: "Many people stop by and we have good conversations. For Amloy, it is the first medical technology fair, the first step to present ourselves. And it paid off for us," says Dr Hans Jürgen Wachter, Global Head at Heraeus Amloy Technologies.
Karin Ferenbach, Marketing Manager of the KLINGEL Medical Metal Group, is already looking ahead to next year's participation: "MedtecLIVE with T4M was a good start for us as the Klingel medical Group in terms of a joint trade fair appearance by our five partner companies after a long break from Corona. We were able to score points there both as a group with our comprehensive value chain and with the particular strengths of the individual group members." The Klingel Medical Metal Group sees itself as a full-service provider for high-quality and complex high-end components, instruments and implants for prevention, diagnosis, surgical interventions, therapy and rehabilitation.
MedtecLIVE with T4M therefore had something to offer for everyone – for experienced and young companies and provided impetus for the future of medical technology.