The virtual trade fair pitches of the Business Scouts for Development programme offer companies with innovative products and service ideas from developing and emerging countries the chance for comprehensive trade fair promotion and participation in expositions in Europe. The first companies from Eastern Africa were now able to present their ideas to a jury.
Start of the trade fair pitches
The first virtual trade fair pitch of the Business Scouts for Development programme took place from 10 to 12 May 2021. A total of 28 companies from Uganda, Rwanda and Ethiopia were selected based on their innovative profile and were able to present their products in front of the expert jury. The virtual trade fair environment was designed on the basis of real-physical trade fair locations and, in addition to the event rooms, also included a large entrance area with a lounge, which invited visitors to linger and network. In this way, participants and jurors got in touch with each other via video chat. There were also information stands about the participants' countries and the organisations involved. The fair pitches themselves took place in a virtual video conference room, which the jurors and the presenting entrepreneurs were dialing into.
Copyright: goldenebotschaft GmbH
The highlight of the event was the announcement of the finalists. The jury, consisting of representatives of the Association of the German Trade Fair Industry (AUMA), the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), the Import Promotion Desk (IPD), Sequa GmbH, FairPros and Manuyoo as well as the GIZ, evaluated the participants' online presentations. "We were impressed by the success stories of the African entrepreneurs and their sustainable business models. By participating in leading German trade fairs, they will be able to find new partners and make their companies globally visible," praised Andreas Schäfer, juror of UNIDO ITP Germany. Fifteen companies from the textile, agricultural processing and technology, furniture, leather production, tourism and office supplies sectors were able to convince the jury of the merits of their companies and will receive access to product placement opportunities on leverist.de and a trade fair preparation programme for participation in leading German and European trade fairs.
Six more trade fair pitches to follow
After the successful start of the trade fair pitch series, the next trade fair pitch will follow at the end of May. This time, promising companies from Bolivia will be given the chance to place their company on the global market with the help of a trade fair promotion, which includes advice, training offers and pro-rata financial support.
In times of social distancing, virtual trade fair pitches offer an innovative addition to classic trade fair promotion programmes and open up new opportunities for local companies.
Business Scouts promote trade fair participation
Business Scouts for Development work as development policy experts in around 40 countries worldwide. On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), they advise German, European and local companies on development policy issues and promote responsible economic engagement via cooperation projects. The Business Scouts for Development work closely with partners from the business community and vocational training organizations in Germany and locally. By being based in partner institutions and foreign chambers of commerce, they are directly integrated into the economic structure and can initiate and promote development policy approaches.