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Shanghai International Lighting Fair boasts a record number of exhibitors and visitors

Oct 25, 2017

The fourth edition of the Shanghai International Lighting Fair continued its streak of year-on-year growth by again recording increases in exhibitor and visitor numbers as well as hosting a well-received concurrent event programme. Held from 5 ‒ 7 September at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre and organised by Guangzhou Guangya Messe Frankfurt Co Ltd, the 2017 fair welcomed 238 exhibitors (2016: 124) and 12,147 visitors (2016: 11,958) utilising some 11,500 sqm of exhibition space.

Ms Lucia Wong, Deputy General Manager of Messe Frankfurt (Shanghai) Co Ltd, spoke of her pleasure at another successful edition of the fair: “I would like to thank the industry for once again showing its tremendous support during the fair. Each year the fair grows in stature and this year saw yet another great number of exhibitors and visitors. It was an honour to welcome the lighting community to gather once again in Shanghai and explore project-based business opportunities in the region. With strong growth in large-scale lighting infrastructure projects led by the Chinese state in recent years, I believe that there are plentiful opportunities for the industry to secure new business over the coming years.”

Fair receives strong support as an effective business platform by exhibitors and visitors

As the Shanghai International Lighting Fair continues to grow in calibre, more and more exhibitors are saving the date for a return visit. Mr Wang Hao, Project Manager, Beijing Yongdian Ouge Lighting Co Ltd, returns for each edition of the show safe in the knowledge his journey will be worthwhile: “We have been loyal exhibitors at Messe Frankfurt’s shows worldwide including the fairs in Shanghai, Guangzhou and Frankfurt. Our business specialises in outdoor waterproof LED fixtures and motion-detecting LED modules. We have been fortunate to meet some buyers during the fair that already have established design plans and are looking for manufacturers. As a result, we have received a number of production orders.”

Old friends and newcomers to the show were equally generous with their praise for the show’s capacity to help find new business partners and seek out new ventures. Mr. Lezhong Zheng, General Manager, Hangzhou Ou Chuang Lighting Technology Co Ltd, explained: “We specialise in outdoor lighting fixtures and we visited the fair to look for new products. This year, we found outdoor decorative lighting that was particularly attractive. Not only were the products equipped with superior practical functions, but they also had a uniquely beautiful aesthetic. We identified a number of product providers that we will have further discussions with. This was our first time at SILF but it has been a successful fair and I believe we will visit next year.“

Visitors highly commend the engaging concurrent event programme and its thought-provoking topics of discussion

In addition to showcasing the latest products from exhibitors, the Shanghai International Lighting Fair positions itself as a must-attend event to learn more about project-based business in the lighting industry. To facilitate such dissemination of industry knowledge, the fair’s concurrent event programme was greatly expanded. A diverse array of influential guest speakers were invited to deliver talks at four tailor-made seminars; “Lighting Design Agora”, “Human Centric Lighting Projects”, “Smart Lighting ‒ Keeping The Light On” and “Lighting +”.

The concurrent event programme was successful in attracting speakers and attendees from very different backgrounds in order to help promote a meeting of the minds and act as a platform for exchanging new ideas. Mr Matteo Magagnini, Head of Product & Project Solutions, Asia Pacific, iGuzzini Lighting (China) Co Ltd, was keen to explore how lighting professionals were able to arrive at such different solutions: “Since 2005, we have been providing lighting solutions to the China market. However, on this occasion of attending the show, our primary goal was not solely on selling products but to share what we believe is the culture of light. This was why we found the presentation session in the Agora particularly appealing. Not only could we share our knowledge and present forecasts for the industry, but we could also explore how architects and lighting designers from various cultural backgrounds arrive at solutions that greatly differ. The Agora really served as a melting pot of different viewpoints while all still speaking the ‘language of light’. At the end of the day, it is not the physical lighting fixture itself but the resulting light and environment from the fixture that is the most important. The seminar was a wonderful opportunity to explore that.”

Echoing those sentiments was Mr Pedro Pinto, Founder, Pinto Lighting Design, who delivered the talk “The Future of Smart Lighting in Small-Medium Projects” during the Lighting Agora. “The Agora was very practical as it brought together numerous experts from different backgrounds to stimulate a number of wide-ranging conversations. These days everyone is talking about smart lighting, yet professional lighting designers must remind themselves that technology is just a tool. Having a concrete and solid concept actually matters more when it comes to a project.”

A desire to see the various sectors of the lighting industry work closely together was a key theme remarked upon by attendees at the fair. Mr Johan Moritz, Lighting Designer, Streets and Parks Department, City of Malmo, Sweden, mentioned specifically the need for lighting designers to collaborate in a more coordinated fashion: “While a lot of thought goes into IoT and Li-Fi lighting fixtures, products from different companies still do not actually communicate well with each other. For an effective and reliable IoT in the future, the industry must work on a ‘USB’ like communicating network that can fit products of all brands. The Agora was very helpful for the industry, especially for those who wanted to understand the Chinese market better. It was a delight to see the audience was packed to the rafters, demonstrating that the industry in China has a strong understanding of high-level lighting installations.”

With such a concerted effort made to ensure that high quality exhibitors and speakers attend the fair, the desired end result for the organisers is always for attendees to see tangible benefits as a result of their time spent over the three days. Ms Feng Wenling, Lighting Designer, DDC Lighting Design Co Ltd, remarked on the number of new ideas she will discuss with her team. “I travelled to the fair to attend the Lighting Agora and I was very happy to listen to all the talks. The speakers raised a number of forward-looking topics that addressed the development of the lighting industry. I found a talk on ‘health lighting’ particularly interesting as it focused on the importance of changing the colour of the lighting to adapt to the biological clock of the user. It was a thought-provoking idea with practical applications. I would like to discuss this concept with my team and see if we can use this technology in the next generation of our products.“

In total, the concurrent event programme saw more than 30 speakers deliver engaging talks and participate in panel discussions. The organisers were delighted with the success of the revamped format of the programme and hope to build upon this for next year.

The next edition of the Shanghai International Lighting Fair will be held from 3 ‒ 5 September 2018 at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre. The Shanghai International Lighting Fair is headed by the biennial Light + Building event which will take place from 18 – 23 March 2018 in Frankfurt, Germany. Messe Frankfurt also offers a series of other light and building technology events worldwide, including the Guangzhou International Lighting Exhibition, BIEL Light + Building in Argentina, Light Middle East in the United Arab Emirates, Interlight Moscow powered by Light + Building in Russia as well as Light India, the LED Expo New Delhi and the LED Expo Mumbai in India.

For more information on Light + Building shows worldwide, please visit For more information regarding the lighting shows in China, please visit or email



Background information on Messe Frankfurt

Messe Frankfurt is the world’s largest trade fair, congress and event organiser with its own exhibition grounds. With more than 2,300 employees at some 30 locations, the company generates annual sales of around €647 million. Thanks to its far-reaching ties with the relevant sectors and to its international sales network, the Group looks after the business interests of its customers effectively. A comprehensive range of services – both onsite and online – ensures that customers worldwide enjoy consistently high quality and flexibility when planning, organising and running their events. The wide range of services includes renting exhibition grounds, trade fair construction and marketing, personnel and food services.
With its headquarters in Frankfurt am Main, the company is owned by the City of Frankfurt (60 percent) and the State of Hesse (40 percent).

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