INDEX 11, which took place April 12-15 at the Geneva Palexpo Exhibition & Congress Centre,
Switzerland, under the theme “innovation and sustainability,” was a success. One can say that INDEX
is one of the most important events for the nonwovens industry. And it looks like the crisis is
over — there was even a little slump in the nonwovens business.
Best Show Ever
Last week, the Rupp Report reported about a great sales order during INDEX. The official
numbers are out now, and they confirm what was heard throughout the show from different exhibitors.
Apart from a few questionable minor problems, all interviewed exhibitors — mostly machinery
manufacturers — were very satisfied with the show. And the next INDEX will be organized once again
in Geneva. INDEX 14 will take place April 8-11, 2014, at the Geneva Palexpo exhibition halls.
Brussels-based EDANA, the International Association Serving the Nonwovens and Related
Industries, sponsor of INDEX, has more than 220 member companies in more than 30 countries. Its
stated mission is “to create the foundation for sustainable growth of the nonwovens, absorbent
hygiene products and related industries through active promotion, education and dialogue.”
EDANA reported that more than 12,600 visitors came to Geneva Palexpo, to see the 530
exhibitors from 43 countries in more than 21,600 square meters (m2) of exhibit space and some
50,000 m2 overall space in the exhibition halls. These are record-breaking results, and rarely has
an INDEX had so many different kinds of exhibitors, covering the whole range from fiber producers,
machinery manufacturers and converters to end-product suppliers.
Every day, even the last one, most of the booths were rather busy, packed with visitors from
around the world, including a great number of Far Eastern guests. But there was not only the show
as such, but also the possibility to attend special events and presentations that showcased
innovation, nonwovens in packaging and product presentations, and also included lunchtime tutorials
to introduce and outline EDANA’s training courses.
INDEX 11 Awards
On the first morning of the show, EDANA held a special ceremony to announce the winners of
the seven INDEX 11 Awards, which recognized the top innovations from the whole nonwovens supply
chain — from product and process innovation to marketing brilliance and sustainability.
EDANA General Manager Pierre Wiertz was more than delighted with the results,
confirming the upswing in this important part of the textile-related industry: “For an industry
which has just started to show signs of recovery — now finally rising to levels above those
recorded before the global financial crisis, we can be incredibly proud. … [C]ompanies are
investing in sustainable activities, which not only bring a positive effect to the world we live
in, but also secure the industry for the future.”
Wiertz’s words were entirely confirmed in many discussions with exhibitors. Unanimously, all
companies confirmed that their expectations were fulfilled and even exceeded. One exhibitor said he
had more than 140 visits a day. One may say that a visit is not an order; however, every exhibitor
said that there are no better visitors than at INDEX in Geneva, where absolutely no tourists
Not only exhibitors, but also visitors expressed that INDEX 11 was the best show ever,
presenting such a variety of products. In a nutshell, the overall feedback was that the markets are
recovering since the beginning of last year. Some exhibitors said that they’ve already reached the
level of 2008 before the financial disaster started.
The most active markets for all kinds of nonwovens are currently China, the United States and
Europe. However, the whole world is showing promising trends toward better times, including Brazil
Even if the disposable sector of the nonwovens business is “a different world” than regular
textiles, it is another indication that the whole industry is regaining ground, especially textiles
for industrial applications. The next exhibition for the sector will be Techtextil in Frankfurt, to
be held May 24-26. It seems it’s going to be another success for the industrial fabrics community.
April 26, 2011