IFA will go ahead this year, but will not be open to the public and will be run as an invitation-only event.
The organisers of the Berlin-based technology show have been forced to alter the format in the light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
IFA 2020 will be held over three-days (September 3-5, Messe Berlin) rather than the usual six, and the number of daily attendees will be limited to 1,000. Last year the show had 250,000 visitors.
Speaking today (May 19), during an online international press conference, Jens Heithecker, the executive director of IFA Berlin, said: “After all the event cancellations during the past months, our industry urgently needs a platform where it can showcase its innovation, so that it can recover and rebound. The recovery of our industry starts here at IFA Berlin.”
While virtual events were useful, they were “missing the immediacy, hands-on experience and human connections that make events like IFA Berlin so incredibly useful”, added Mr Heithecker.
This year’s IFA will effectively be run as four stand-alone events on the Messe Berlin exhibition site: the IFA Global Press Conference, which will be for around 800 journalists and will take place on only two or three stages for keynote speeches and company announcements; the sourcing show IFA Global Markets; a combination of the IFA Next and IFA Shift mobility events, and IFA Business, Retail & Meeting Lounges.
The opening keynote for this year’s IFA will be delivered by Cristiano Amon, the president of Qualcomm.
IFA 2020 has been developed in close collaboration with public health authorities in Germany to ensure the health and safety of all participants. The organisers will make sure that social distancing, careful crowd control and other effective public hygiene measures are all in place.
Dr Christian Göke, chief executive of Messe Berlin, said: “Our IFA team really has pulled out the stops for this one. I’m incredibly proud of how they have tackled this challenge and come up with a solution for IFA 2020.”
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