(Munich/Germany) – While opti took place in the Munich exhibition hall, Giovanni Vitaloni, President of Mido and of ANFAO, the Italian association of manufacturers of optical products, explained the plans for the upcoming trade fair in Milan from 29 February to 2 March, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
A lot of changes have occurred in the world of eyewear from 1970 to the present. Mido has written its transformative history over the course of these 50 years. At the first edition, there were 95 exhibitors (67 Italian and 28 from other countries) who displayed their products in 3.000 qm of exhibit space. In 2019, more than 1.320 exhibitors and their wares occupied seven pavilions and represented 70 countries. A growth pattern benefiting from an ongoing legacy of leadership built over time that, in only the last five years, has brought a 20% increase in attendance, which peaked at the last edition with nearly 60.000 attendees from 159 countries.
“Thanks to everyone’s hard work, in 50 years Mido has gone from being primarily a B2B event to a year-round hub of attraction that involves stakeholders, opinion leaders, buyers, institutions, celebrities, media and Italian and international influencers” – remarked Giovanni Vitaloni, President of Mido and ANFAO, the Italian Optical Goods Manufacturers’ Association. “Mido is the eyewear industry event no one wants to miss. Always on the leading edge of trends, it carefully curates the show’s installations and aesthetics without losing sight of the state-of-the-art tools that make it even more attractive to the media, exhibitors and stakeholders”.
German third-ranked export market
Mido’s strength lies in its robust identity as an event where business deals are clinched and as a point of confluence for eyewear professionals who share experiences and catch up on the latest market trends. Germany, where the eyewear industry in general seems unscathed by the country’s economic slowdown (+10%), has long been key importer of Italian eyewear.
With 10 million pieces purchased each year, Germany’s domestic market is valued at roughly 5.6 billion euro, making it the third-ranked export market, after the US and France. For the January-September 2019 period, exports of Italian sunglasses to Germany increased in value by 11.4%, while frames were up 7.5%.
“We are extremely pleased with the performance achieved in Germany” – stated Giovanni Vitaloni. “Fortunately for our industry, we have not yet experienced the signs of slowing or arrest in the German market that have occurred in other sectors. Of course, we must carefully monitor the situation in the coming months because Germany is a crucial market for us, the third in importance after the United States and France, one that consumes a 7% share of our exports, in terms of value. Nonetheless, we are optimistic about a product like Italian eyewear that is made of exclusive materials, offers superior quality and comfort and, above all, service. Features that are highly valued in Germany.” (Source: ANFAO – Italian Optical Goods Manufacturers’ Association)
Two books will be publicated
The goal for the 2020 edition, to be held at Rho Fiera Milano February 29th to March 2nd, is to deliver an unforgettable event with countless innovations and a few surprises. Work is under way to finalize a packed calendar of events that will engage the entire industry and that will make the 50th edition unforgettable. “Among the developments we can share with you in advance is the publication of two unique books that celebrate this key anniversary, each in its own way.”
The first is a novel titled “Through the looking glass: Mido, 50 years a global crossroads” by Adriano Moraglio, journalist and author of 20 books. Interweaving fact and fiction, the novel narrates the 50 editions of Mido through the personal and professional adventures of a family of opticians.
The second book, “History of optics”, was written by optician-optometrist Silvio Maffioletti and Sergio Cappa, optometrist and long-standing professor at the Institute of Optics and Optometry in Milan. It traces the history of optics from the 1300s to the present. The first work of its kind, it is of vital importance to the industry.
Mido: one of the first sustainable trade shows
“Among the other innovations at the next edition of Mido is its commitment to reduce the environmental impact of the exhibition by promoting Plastic Free policies and the responsible use of water, paper, food and energy. Also during Mido, a Stand up for green award will be presented to the most sustainable stand. The goal is to become one of the first sustainable trade shows in the world.”
Innovations and research
In addition to innovations, the exhibit space: all seven pavilions, divided into the Fashion District, Lenses, Design Lab, More!, Lab Academy, FAiR East and Tech areas have been confirmed. The Bestore Award, the international contest for the best optical shops in the world will be held again, along with an in-depth look at the industry in OttiClub, that this year, together with some consolidated appointments, such as the WGSN forecast of the latest trends, will introduce some interesting insights: the new research commissioned by Mido together with Silmo and a new edition of the Mido Outlook, the observatory engages thousands of Italian and global players in a survey that this time is aimed at investing the future development in the market, starting from the most important changes in the last 50 years.
Mido’s spirit is quintessentially international but with an all-Italian focus on design and style. “It is the ‘group photo’ of all those who make up the vast universe of eyewear, from the big international players, manufacturers and buyers, to designers and small business entrepreneurs, opticians and ophthalmologists, by way of the entire global eyewear supply chain. The wonder awaits, you won’t want to miss it”.