UFI Releases Expanded World Map of Exhibition Venues

14th Dec, 2023

Report provides data on 1,425 exhibition venues, with a total of 42.1 million sqm; China leads the way in terms of available venue space, with the USA and Germany completing the top three markets; 21 market profiles, covering all markets with more than 300,000 sqm of total available venue space.

Available exhibition space is a key driver in the development of the exhibition industry globally. Today, to provide the industry with up-to-date figures on venue capacities, UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, is publishing its full report on the World Map of Exhibition Venues.

The report lists the largest venues for all 21 markets whose total capacity exceeds 300,000 square metres (sqm) of gross indoor exhibition space.

This edition was, for the first time, prepared by jwc GmbH, in close cooperation with UFI.

Kai Hattendorf, UFI CEO and Managing Director, says: “This updated World Map showcases our industry’s most holistic and complete quantitative dataset. It is remarkable to see that global investments into upgrades and expansions of exhibition venue space have continued throughout the pandemic, a true testament to the power and resilience of our industry’s core business model. Investments into venue space are a win for everyone: for the industries served by exhibitions, and the destinations in which they take place. Our partnership with jwc for this project will facilitate regular editions of this important report.”

Jochen Witt, President and CEO of jwc GmbH adds: “We are delighted to have the chance to collaborate with UFI on the latest edition of the World Map of Venues. By merging the databases of UFI and jwc, we can ensure the utmost data quality for all stakeholders in our industry. The existing World Map of Venues is the result of a thorough reassessment of most markets, providing an accurate representation of venue capacities worldwide. Our ongoing partnership with UFI will involve continuous enhancements to the database, ensuring it remains the most comprehensive and reliable quantitative source of venue data in our industry.”

This global census covers all exhibition venues with a minimum of 5,000 sqm of gross indoor exhibition space, providing fascinating insights.

Regionally, Europe still hosts the biggest share of the world’s total venue capacity with 37.2%. With 36.6%, Asia-Pacific has almost caught up, with new space capacities being added across the region as the event industry grows with these markets. With 17.9%, North America stands in 3rd place.

On a country/market level, China is now home to 29.3% of the world’s venue capacity. The USA currently holds 14.9% of global venue space capacity, while third-placed Germany is home to 7.5%. Along with Italy and France, these five markets account for 62% of the total world indoor exhibition space.

In terms of size, the number of “mega venues” continues to grow. These are venues with more than 100,000 sqm of exhibition space. The World Map now tracks 81 such venues around the world, accounting for 6% of the total market. 40 of these mega venues are available across Europe, and 35 exist in Asia-Pacific.

More than one-third (35%) of all venues belong to the medium-size segment, offering between 20,000 and 100,000 sqm, while 59% of venues globally have an indoor capacity of between 5,000 and 20,000 sqm.

The average size of venues in the Asia-Pacific region exceeds that of any other region, a result of the many infrastructure projects in the region, especially in China.

The 2023 UFI World Map of Exhibition Venues covers the following markets: Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Turkey, UAE, United Kingdom, and the USA.

In line with UFI’s mission to provide vital data to the entire industry, the full World Map of Exhibition Venues report is available, free of charge, on the UFI website at: www.ufi.org/research. It is also available at www.jwc.eu.com.

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