【DE】Messe Düsseldorf expands cooperation with digihub Düsseldorf/Rhineland


  • Complete spectrum of start-up promotion
  • Partnership with digihub extended for another three years
  • Established start-ups now also supported via Scale-up.NRW
  • Messe Düsseldorf contributes its industry platforms and networks


Where young enterprises find optimal conditions: Messe Düsseldorf provides start-ups with access to the industries of its 20 world’s leading trade fairs via special areas and formats at discounted conditions. Add to this the now extended partnership with digihub Düsseldorf/Rhineland for promising new establishments – complemented by Scale-up.NRW for fostering already well-established start-ups.


Düsseldorf. Messe Düsseldorf continues to extend its commitment to start-ups, taking an even more broad-based approach while especially rising to its role as an economic promotion body in Düsseldorf and NRW. Emphasising the relevance of young companies, Wolfram N. Diener, President & CEO of Messe Düsseldorf, says: “Start-ups are tomorrow’s key customers: they surprise us with novel solutions for today’s challenges big and small, with promising business models, alternative approaches and ways of working. It is all the more important to support newcomers in their growth. They make the ranges offered at our world-leading trade fairs even more attractive, in turn benefiting themselves from the exposure they are receiving.”



The digihub organizes the annual DIGITAL DEMO DAY (Credit:digihub / Paint The Town Studios).

The world’s leading medical trade fair MEDICA (14 – 17 November 2022) demonstrates the extensive presentation and networking opportunities that Messe Düsseldorf offers the start-up community: by means of the MEDICA START-UP PARK it is featured prominently on the exhibition space and via the MEDICA DISRUPT Sessions also in the line-up of supporting events. Highlights are the finals of the “11th MEDICA Start-up COMPETITION” as well as of the “14th Healthcare Innovation World Cup”. Along these lines each leading international Düsseldorf trade fair offers special areas and formats.


Dr. Christian Plenge, Executive Director Digital Strategy and Communication at Messe Düsseldorf, explains that MD’s commitment goes far beyond this: “The offers for start-ups at our leading international trade fairs benefit attractive, promising young firms of the respective sectors. Owing to our cooperation with start-up initiatives in Düsseldorf and NRW we are additionally committed to the regional start-up scene, in particular. This is part of our self-perception as a strong actor at this location.”


Now Messe Düsseldorf has extended its cooperation with digihub Düsseldorf/Rhineland where newly established companies are in focus. They receive funding, office space, consulting and networking opportunities. As part of the start-up promotion scheme “Ignition”, three times a year, five start-ups are promoted for a period of five months. From each of these ‘start-up classes” a winner is selected for follow-up promotion. To achieve this, the start-ups have to convince a jury composed of business representatives and other digihub partner organisations at the so-called ‘Ignition Demo Nights’.


Additionally, the cooperation with Scale-up.NRW, digihub’s new scaling scheme, supports already established, successful start-ups in scaling up and internationalizing their operations. During the 18-month promotion scheme individual scaling avenues are worked out for the participating companies. With a view to raising their recognition levels in their industries and win over new customers Messe Düsseldorf offers them preferred spaces on the start-up areas of its trade fairs.


Welcoming the cooperation with Messe Düsseldorf, Dr. Klemens Gaida and Peter Hornik, General Managers of the digihub and Programme Director / Deputy Programme Director of Scale-up.NRW, say: “Both digihub programmes – Ignition and Scale-up.NRW – reflect the complete spectrum of start-up promotion. While Ignition focuses on the promotion of start-ups in their early stages, Scale-up.NRW focalises growth promotion when start-ups have already scored their first successes. Messe Düsseldorf makes a valuable contribution here. It never ceases to inspire me when experienced entrepreneurs open up new opportunities for company founders.”


Messe Düsseldorf Group


Messe Düsseldorf is among the most successful trade fair companies worldwide. It hosts around 40 trade fairs including 20 leading international trade fairs at its 613,000 sqm exhibition centre on the Rhine. In the 18 halls the international market leaders and top decision-makers of various sectors get together every year in order to present and discover innovations, to exchange and to network. The sectors of expertise of Messe Düsseldorf include: “Machinery, Plants and Equipment” (i.a. drupa, K, interpack, glasstec, wire and Tube); “Retail, Trades and Services” (EuroShop, EuroCIS, ProWein); “Health and Medical Technology” (MEDICA, COMPAMED, REHACARE); “Lifestyle and Beauty” (BEAUTY, TOP HAIR) as well as “Leisure” (boot, CARAVAN SALON). Add to this numerous conventions, corporate events, conferences and meetings by its subsidiary Düsseldorf Congress. Abroad, Messe Düsseldorf organises 65 events and participations. The global network of the group of companies encompasses 76 foreign representatives for 139 countries – including 6 international subsidiaries.

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