Autonomous driving, alternative engines and the digitalisation of the entire automotive value chain are the megatrends of the automotive industry and therefore the driving forces behind innovation in the automotive world. When it comes to these megatrends, automotive supplier companies play an important role given that they now normally supply more than two thirds of the parts used to manufacture a vehicle. At the 10th International Suppliers Fair (IZB) in Wolfsburg, supplier companies will showcase their product and process innovations. More than 830 companies from 34 different countries have signed up to present their products and services at the renowned specialist trade fair hosted by the company Wolfsburg AG on its tenth anniversary. 90 of these companies have decided to adopt the same focus as the IZB 2018, “Think Digital”, in the run-up to the event. More than 60 companies from the German Land of Lower Saxony will showcase their products and services in the exhibition area covering a total of 38,000 square metres. More information about the trade fair can be found online at www.izb-online.com.
“The suppliers to the automotive industry are important players in the globally networked industry as both system suppliers and development partners. Against the background of digitalisation, other companies are being added to the industry’s group of suppliers, for example software developers, data processing specialists or manufacturers of entertainment electronics. This offers new business opportunities for both start-ups and global players”, explains Thomas Krause, a Member of the Board of the company hosting the event, Wolfsburg AG.
The fact that this year’s event is focusing on the topic of “Think Digital” directly addresses one of the most pressing issues facing the automotive supplier industry. About one in every ten exhibitors at the IZB 2018 has selected this main topic as their focus, especially those from the fields of electrics, electronics, mechatronics, development and IT and service providers. The stands of the companies focusing on the topic of “Think Digital” will all be located in Halls 1 to 3. The solutions offered by these exhibitors range from upgraded more classic components through to driver assistance systems and entertainment electronics and right through to manufacturing processes.
The fact that the IZB 2018 will welcome eight of the world's top ten automotive suppliers as exhibitors underlines its importance as a specialist trade fair for the industry. What started out as a regional showcase event back in 2001 is now Europe’s leading trade fair. “We are consistently committed to our focus on quality instead of quantity. Only companies that make a direct contribution towards vehicles are considered as exhibitors for the IZB. Both exhibitors and trade visitors value the event’s business-oriented atmosphere, above all for the exchange of ideas and experiences and for their business transactions”, states Stephan Böddeker, the Head of the MobilityBusiness division at Wolfsburg AG, in reference to the results of the company’s regular trade fair surveys.
Exhibitors from all over the world
In response to the large number of exhibitor requests, which led to the IZB 2018 being fully booked within just a few weeks after the start of the registration period in autumn 2017, the exhibition area has been optimised and increased in size, now covering a total of around 38,000 square metres. Of the 34 different countries represented at the event, Germany will have the strongest presence as the home of around two thirds of exhibitors. The mobility state of Lower Saxony will also have a strong presence with more than 60 exhibitors, around 30 of which are based in the Wolfsburg-Braunschweig region. Around a dozen companies, for example, will showcase their products ranging from coatings and metal parts through to engineering services and right through to quality management and safety solutions at the joint stand run by the German federal states of Lower Saxony and Bremen and the umbrella organisation “Automotive Nord” of the North German Automotive Cluster, which will cover an area of 150 square metres.
Thomas Krause is proud of the ideas and impetus that the trade fair provides for the entire business region: “Our region is one of the powerhouses of the German automotive industry. Over the past 20 years, around 190 supplier companies have located to Wolfsburg alone. With the IZB, the original focus of which was placed on networking and exchanging ideas and experiences, they can make the most of an outstanding platform right on their doorstep every two years.” In fact, three of the seven companies that have been part of every IZB ever since the trade fair was first launched are based in Wolfsburg: InPro electric GmbH, Kromberg & Schubert GmbH & Co. KG and Schnellecke Group AG & Co. KG.
An industry with a wide range of innovations
The exhibitors at this year’s event are bringing with them 117 innovations, 38 of which are world premieres. Examples of these innovations include carbon dioxide neutral substances and bio-hybrid materials from the Fraunhofer Project Centre Wolfsburg, new sensors for measuring the concentration of fine particulate matter from Amphenol Advanced Sensors, a brake pedal made of continuous fibres from BOGE Elastmetall GmbH, a tamper-proof vehicle nameplate from Schreiner Group GmbH & Co. KG and a cost and material-saving production process for plastic parts from the SAPA Group. The innovations that have been announced for the event cover nearly all product groups and are summarised in the IZB Innovations Report.
The programme of specialist events accompanying the IZB will be kicked off on 15th October in the Congress Park Wolfsburg by the IZB Congress, which will focus on the “Digital Car Revolution”. At the event, speakers from the fields of science and research will discuss e-mobility, fully autonomous driving and digitalisation and the new business models arising from these areas with representatives from manufacturers and supplier companies. The Congress is being organised by the Institute for Production Management (IPM AG) from Hanover.
The Tech Talk with start-ups hosted by T-Systems and Wolfsburg AG, which will take place on 17th October, will particularly focus on the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence, with six international start-ups from the IT industry using hands-on applications for end customers to demonstrate the products and ideas emerging from these fields for the mobility of the future.
Alongside trade visitors, school pupils, students and jobseekers are also welcome to attend the IZB. At the IZB Job Fair on 18th October, they can make the most of the opportunity to ask representatives from the human resources departments of exhibitors at the event about entering the workforce and career opportunities, as well as concrete job vacancies. The Job Wall in Hall 1 will also provide interested visitors with an overview of job vacancies at companies exhibiting at the IZB and other companies.
IZB 2018 facts & figures
Venue: IZB-Messegelände, Oebisfelder Strasse, 38448 Wolfsburg, Germany. The address can be entered into a navigation device as follows: Allerpark, Germany
Opening hours: 16th to 18th October 2018, daily from 10am to 6pm
Admission: Day ticket: 28 Euros; three-day ticket: 65 Euros; free admission for school pupils, students and OAPs upon presentation of valid ID
IZB focus topic: Think Digital
Hall 1: IZB focus topic “Think Digital”, Electrics, Electronics, Mechatronics, Partners, Sponsors
Hall 2: Electrics, Electronics, Mechatronics
Hall 3: IT and Services, Logistics, Production, Development
Hall 4: Cluster Stands, National Stands of Specific Countries
Hall 5: Assemblies, Drive Control, Gears, Chassis
Hall 6: Vehicle Interiors / Modules (non-electric), Plastics, Chemical Products
Hall 7: Metal and Lightweight Construction, Car Body Manufacturing
How to find us and where to park:
IZB visitors can use the parking spaces by the Volkswagen Arena (the “green” parking zone, P1 and P2). Shuttle buses will also run from Wolfsburg Central Station, the Nordfriedhof Park+Ride car park and the Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg to the exhibition grounds in the Allerpark in Wolfsburg and back.