Press Release
August 21, 2013

Hannover Fairs to Move North American Headquarters to Chicago

One of the world’s largest event organizers to access Chicago’s leading convention status and talent base
Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

CHICAGO, August 21, 2013 – Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Hannover Fairs USA today announced that global event organizer has chosen to move its North American headquarters to 8755 W. Higgins Road in Chicago. The office will bring 10 -15 full time employees from its current location in New Jersey.

“Hannover Fairs’ decision to locate its North American headquarters in Chicago is testament to the progress we are making in expanding the tourism and convention industry, and I welcome them to Chicago,” said Mayor Emanuel. “I am completely committed to the growth of this critical industry, and attracting as many conventions and visitors as possible. This industry employs tens of thousands of people and contributes hundreds of millions of dollars to our economy, and I am pleased to see its continued growth."

Hannover Fairs is a subsidiary of Germany’s Deutsche Messe, one of the world’s largest event organizers. Deutsche Messe owns and operates the Hannover Fairgrounds in Hannover, Germany, the world’s largest exhibition site. The company chose to relocate in Chicago to embrace the city’s leading convention status and talent base, as well its access to U.S. and world markets.

“Moving to Chicago just makes good business sense for Hannover Fairs USA,” said Larry Turner, President & CEO of Hannover Fairs. “By relocating our office to Chicago from the Northeast, we are closer to our customers and partners.  Many of our North American industrial event exhibitors and attendees are located in the upper Midwest so relocating to Chicago was a logical step to better serve our constituents.  Chicago also provides an extremely supportive business community that embraces mid-market businesses and the development of long-term business relationships.”

“This is welcome news for Chicago’s visitor industry,” said Don Welsh, President and CEO of Choose Chicago.  “Increasing business and leisure travel to Chicago is a central component of Mayor Emanuel’s economic development strategy and one that I’m happy to report is delivering positive results, especially from overseas markets.  We are seeing great traction out of Germany now that we have representation in the market. Chicago offers the infrastructure that is critical for successful and impactful events -- central location, skilled labor, diverse hotel inventory, and unmatched dining, culture and entertainment.”

Hannover Fairs’ selection of Chicago brings together two key aspects of the Chicago’s Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs, called for by Mayor Emanuel to accelerate growth in the region. World Business Chicago (WBC) is currently implementing the Plan’s strategies to make Chicago a premier destination for conventions and business travel, as well as to increase the region’s attractiveness as a center for business services and headquarters.

“We are pleased that Hannover Fairs recognizes Chicago’s assets as a leader in the convention industry, as well as an unmatched location for corporate headquarters,” said Jeff Malehorn, President & CEO of World Business Chicago. “By locating in Chicago, Hannover Fairs will find the talented workforce it needs, along with unparalleled access to the world. We look forward to working with them for years to come.”

Hannover Fairs USA develops and manages marketing programs at Deutsche Messe events in Hannover, Germany and the United States, as well as in such key emerging markets as China, India and Turkey. Working closely with its clients, Hannover Fairs helps them maintain their competitive position on and off the event floor.  The company’s programs reflect the global scope of Deutsche Messe's activities and include such world-renowned B-to-B trade fairs as CeBIT (information and communications technology), DOMOTEX (floor coverings), HANNOVER MESSE (industrial technology), and LIGNA HANNOVER (forestry and wood industries).

Hannover Fairs USA was referred to WBC by the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest; based in Chicago, the organization has more than 800 members throughout 14 states.

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World Business Chicago (WBC) leads Chicago’s business retention, attraction and expansion efforts and raises the city’s position as a premier global business destination. Chaired by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, WBC fosters private sector growth through the advancement of a business-friendly environment that attracts world class talent, and is responsible for the implementation of Chicago’s Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs.