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President of drupa 2012 Bernhard Schreier: the drupa of Business Opportunities

Published on May 8, 2012

Bernhard Schreier, CEO of Heidelberg and President of drupa 2012 answers Pat Henry's questions about the concepts and planning of this mammoth show in Düsseldorf, Germany.

Par Henry:  This is Pat Henry, WhatTheyThink.  We are at Drupa in Dusseldorf, Germany.  With us this morning is Bernhard Schreier.  In addition to his role as chairman of the board of management of Heidelberg, Mr. Schreier is also president of Drupa.  Mr. Schreier and his colleagues determine the shape of this show and have a great deal to do with the planning and execution.  Thank you for being willing to talk about Drupa with us this morning, Bernhard.  I have to begin with kind of a frank question, though.  I arrived here the day before opening day and then on opening day it was my distinct impression that there weren't as many people as I remember at other Drupa's, and I've coming to them since 1990.  And I was little curious about that, given the difficult economic conditions that are in Europe right now and in other parts of the world, is there any concern on the part of Drupa that attendance could be affected?

Bernhard Schreier:  Look, I'm coming to Drupa since '82.

Par Henry:  Sure.

Bernhard Schreier:  And yes there are ups and downs, and when we were sitting together in conceiving Drupa and looking at what needs to be done and also talked about the expectation of attendance, we had a very clear feeling from the very beginning it might be less because of the economic environment, because of the challenges the printers face.  And there is one thing which came out very clearly, which was that, yes, maybe not all the printers will bring their entire staff as they did before.  That means in former Drupa's there were always printers inviting ten, 20, 30, 50, 100 people...

Par Henry:  That's right.  They had their entourages.

Bernhard Schreier:  ...of their print shop to come and see and to have a feel.  Who will come, as in the past, will be the decision makers.

Par Henry:  That's right.

Bernhard Schreier:  Because nobody will dare not to come and miss something.

Par Henry:  Okay.

Bernhard Schreier:  And this is why I'm sure that all those who make the decisions, who make the decisions on investments, who make decisions of future solutions for their company, they have to come and they will come.  And therefore, whether this may be a few 10,000 people less to attend, the right people will be there. 

Par Henry:  Something else I notice is that there is more emphasis on applications as Drupa.  I'm thinking of the Drupa Cube, for example, where we can see programs on packaging and other specific areas and I see other examples throughout the fairgrounds here.  It seems to me that exhibitors have realized it's no longer enough just to show the iron, just to the hardware.  We have to tell a story about ROI, we have to tell a story about profitability.  Can you speak to that?

Bernhard Schreier:  Yes, for sure.  Because this is the set up now of the mature exhibitors to show what can be done with print as well.  We need to be clear; we are facing no more at the times where its just sheer volume and productivity who makes the living of a printer.  And therefore it's clear that printers have to differentiate.  If we look in to industrialized countries, only those printers who have the right solution for their customers and who differentiate from each other, they are the ones who are the winners.  And it's no -- and they cannot just invest into equipment anymore and say, "Okay, now I have a faster machine and now I'm better than the other one."  No, if I fulfill my customer needs then I am the better one, and that's applications.  What does my customer needs in terms of new print capabilities, what does he need in new finishing equipment capabilities, how does that fit together, how can I match the different needs with my equipment and how does that link together also with my Internet capabilities.

Par Henry:  Sure.

Bernhard Schreier:  So how do I pass the order or the request from the Internet on to my machines and then back to the customer in form of printed matter.  And all this can only be done if I have a global overview of solutions and applications, which are there not just machinery.  And those exhibitors who don't talk applications, those who don't talk about what could be done different at the customer side not only in terms of equipment they might not be successful at this print show.

Par Henry:  Well, it's a very different Drupa from what it used to be and it is changing for the better and we thank you for providing us that overview.

Bernhard Schreier:  Let me just make one remark.  This is why we called this Drupa from the very beginning it will be the Drupa of business opportunities.

Par Henry:  Okay.

Bernhard Schreier:  And the Drupa of...

Par Henry:  The business opportunities Drupa.

Bernhard Schreier:  The business opportunity Drupa, that's why people come.

Par Henry:  I like that better than fill in the blank technology Drupa.

Bernhard Schreier:  Absolutely.

Par Henry:  Much more satisfying.

Bernhard Schreier:  Absolutely.

Par Henry:  Bernhard, thank you so much.

Bernhard Schreier:  Pleasure.

Par Henry:  Okay.

Bernhard Schreier:  Thanks.

Par Henry:  Pat Henry, WhatTheyThink. Thank you for watching.

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