Londoner Buchmesse bezieht Position zum Frankfurt Projekt: Opportunismus!

The London Book Fair chat sich zu den Plänen der Frankfurter Buchmesse [mehr…]zu Wort gemeldet . Wir drucken das im O-Ton, damit auch alle Zwischentöne korrekt ankommen:

Alastair Gornall&, Chief Executive Officer of [Reed Exhibitions (UK) comments, “While fascinating, the opportunism recently demonstrated by Frankfurt Book Fair’s attempt to launch another book fair in London is also intriguing, not least given the feedback we received prior to moving The London Book Fair to ExCeL.

During our extensive 18-month consultative period, we took over 450 individuals to ExCeL to experience the venue. Prior to making the final decision, we discussed all of the options with the global publishing industry including publishers, agents, booksellers, trade associations and other key stakeholders. It was clearly shown that the industry’s preference was for a new world-class venue for this internationally prestigious fair. This feedback also made it clear that maintaining a March dateline was essential – a time when Earls Court is always occupied for an eight-week period by the Daily Mail Ideal Home exhibition. This led us to take the decision to move to ExCeL in order to allow The London Book Fair to grow even further on the international stage.

I want to make it absolutely clear that we did consider Earls Court, but due to their inability to give us any dates from mid- February to mid-April (on an ongoing basis), and the fact that the space available in Earls Court One would have to be over 2 levels, including areas that are very infrequently utilised due to their poor location and facilities, made the choice for ExCeL clear.

Some rumours have been circulating that this decision was influenced by our shareholding in ExCeL. Nothing is further from the truth as we always determine the optimum venue in consultation with the exhibitions’ clients. Reed Exhibitions were one of the original shareholders in ExCeL, along with several other leading exhibition companies, as we recognised the fact that London needed a purpose built, 21st century exhibition venue in order to maintain London’s ability to run world-class exhibitions. Having helped in getting the venue built, in June 2001 our shareholding was diluted to less than 0.1%.

In this, our first year at ExCeL, we experienced and take full responsibility for unacceptable onsite operational difficulties for which we apologise unreservedly. These are fully resolved for The London Book Fair 2007.

Over the last 20 years, Reed Exhibitions has always been determined to make The London Book Fair the best possible forum for the global publishing industry. Its growth is evidence of a successful strategy. We firmly believe that should Frankfurt Book Fair’s proposal get off the ground it will not only remove an essential competitive element between the two leading book fairs, but also its success will always be restricted so as to preserve Frankfurt Book Fair’s unique position.

The London Book Fair is one of Reed’s flagship exhibitions. Its continuing success, to the benefit of our customers, is of paramount importance to us. Our priority over the coming weeks, months and year is to ensure that we deliver a first class fair, in a first class venue – as we have done for many years – in March 2007. Falling short of that objective is not an option we will consider.

In short, The London Book Fair is here to stay. We strongly recommend that all of our clients give The London Book Fair one more chance to demonstrate that our exciting vision is achievable at ExCeL – anything else would, in our opinion, be a retrograde step.

We welcome dialogue and we look forward to hearing everyone’s view and indeed to answering any queries and concerns people may have.”

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