Asia’s most influential lighting and LED event culminates with an increase in visitor numbers

Guangzhou International Lighting Exhibition celebrated another successful edition as more than 165,000 visitors (5% increase from 2017) descended on the China Import and Export Fair Complex in Guangzhou from June 9 ‒ 12. A total of 2,602 exhibitors demonstrated the latest in lighting and LED products and solutions across 19 halls and 195,000 sqm of exhibition space. The main thoroughfare at the exhibition ­– The Pearl Promenade – was also a hive of activity as the THINKLIGHT: Embracing Changes Forum enticed thousands of visitors to a programme of talks from some of the world’s leading authorities in lighting concepts, technology and design.

While heavy rain and storm clouds greeted participants on their arrival in Guangzhou, spirits could not be dampened inside the fairground as the summer sunshine returned in time for the opening day of the 23rd edition of the show. Adopting a theme of “Embracing Changes”, the fair showcased a plethora of innovative lighting and LED products and solutions as the show reaffirmed its position as the most comprehensive and influential lighting event in Asia.

Commenting on this year’s exhibition, Ms Lucia Wong, Deputy General Manager of Messe Frankfurt (Shanghai) Co Ltd, said: “Embracing change has never been so important for the lighting industry and I am truly pleased to have seen such earnest and forward-looking ideas and approaches on display at the fair. The rise in visitor figures demonstrates the renewed industry-wide confidence and positive future outlook for the lighting community. The global transition to connected lighting has the potential to improve the quality of our lives and it will undoubtedly bring previously distinct industry sectors together. GILE will continue to serve as platform that supports these innovations and nurtures future developments.”

One of the highlights of this year’s fair was the success of the THINKLIGHT: Embracing Changes Forum. Divided into the THINK and ACT Forums, more than 80 renowned speakers shared their insights into the future of lighting over the first three days of the show. Exploring many conceptual and strategic ideas, the THINK forum examined lighting’s potential while those on the ACT stage examined current applications and real-life business studies.

Reflecting on the importance of gathering such influential and highly regarded speakers to the show, Mr Philip Beesley, Professor, School of Architecture, University of Waterloo, commented: “I think that an exhibition like this can not only emphasise industry and commerce but also culture and deeply felt common values in the lighting industry. This forum has brought together a cultural gathering of research and careful thought. It is an extraordinary intellectual festival that could have a tremendous impact on participants.”

Smart lighting, lighting design in smart cities, human-centric lighting, OLEDs, miniaturised LED drivers and horticultural lighting were just a few of the topics broached in the presentations delivered on both stages.

Key figures at a glance

  • Visitors: Over 165,000 (2017: 156,898)
  • Exhibitors: 2,602 (2017: 2,428)
  • Exhibition area: 195,000sqm (2017: 180,000 sqm)

Comments from exhibitors:

“Regarding the fair theme this year “Embracing changes”, the lighting industry has been evolving at a fast pace. Our team is dedicated to learning about experiences from other industry professionals and by staying in tune with the latest market intelligence. GILE is an important fair to facilitate the development of the lighting industry in China. It is a place where lighting companies of various size and scale gather in one place. By learning from each other, companies are better able to develop innovative products and technologies for the market.”
Mr Jack Liu, Sales Director, MLS Co Ltd, China

“Just half way into the show we had already achieved our goals for the fair. GILE is an effective trading platform for us and this year we have found dozens of new customers. The show theme of the fair was very accurate to describe what is going on in the lighting industry. The market environment is dynamic, and while we are embracing these changes, we still want to have fun. As a global company with colleagues based all over the world, this is a good platform for us to engage with everyone in the industry.”
Mr Eric Teather, President, WhiteOptics LLC, USA

Comments from buyers:

“As a lighting wholesaler in Singapore we are looking for industrial and hospitality lighting products which can be used in factories and hotels.

Last year we had great success at GILE and we are still working with some of those suppliers that we met. This exhibition provides us with a good opportunity to meet a wide range of exhibitors who provide high quality and inexpensive products. That being said, I am really impressed by the advanced lighting technology in China. I am happy to see there are more decorative lighting products at this edition as its demand is increasing recently, especially in Singapore. I will definitely return next year as GILE is a very professional trading platform to source new products and make connections with new business partners.”
Mr Y.P. Yion, Founder, YP LED Supplies, Singapore

“Our company provides integrated lighting solutions for human-centric lighting. We joined the show this year as we are keen to see what is happening in China and we want to get more information about the industry in Asia. We are very happy to have found two serious potential partners to produce products for us. The show is obviously the centre of the Asian lighting industry where you can see the latest trends and technologies.”
Mr Raimar Geffken, President Director, PT Ralum, Indonesia

Comments from speakers:

“I think the show theme and the THINKLIGHT event programme have been set up perfectly. You have to think both strategically about your products and their future potential but you must also act now and build these products before you fall behind your competitors. Having both of these THINK and ACT sections at the forum is really important because businesses need to be thinking carefully about the product and technology selection. Embracing change today has never been so important for device makers.”
Mr Skip Ashton, Vice President Software, Silicon Labs, USA

“I think the connected city is going to be the next big thing for the lighting industry. Suddenly many different industry sectors want to work with the lighting industry and be involved in smart lighting products. The challenge is how to connect, work together and learn from these experiences. By being at GILE you are able to learn and meet people from all around the world who are involved in similar projects. These events are crucial because you get to meet the right people and the best professionals.”
Ms Elisa Hilgen, City of Light Coordinator, City of Jyväskylä, Finland

The 23rd edition of GILE was held concurrently with Guangzhou Electrical Building Technology (GEBT) and, for the first time, the Guangzhou Public Security Technology (GPST) fair. As technology becomes more connected and smart devices proliferate, a diverse array of industry sectors are collaborating and working more closely together than ever before. Visitors commented favourably on the concurrent format of the fairs and praised the synergy that was created by holding the three shows under one roof.

The Guangzhou International Lighting Exhibition is a part of Messe Frankfurt’s Light + Building Technology fairs headed by the biennial Light + Building event.

Messe Frankfurt also offers a series of other light and building technology events worldwide, including the Shanghai International Lighting Fair, Thailand Lighting Fair, 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 www.brand.light-building.com.

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