Cebit America 2005 cancelled, low revenue cited

International events unaffected

Although the Cebit America Web site continues to enthusiastically suggest that visitors "Save the date!" for the 2005 edition of the IT trade show next June in New York, organisers this week announced that the event has been cancelled.

"Though regrettable, this is the correct business decision," Joachim Schafer, president of show organiser Hannover Fairs USA, said in a statement. "Cebit America is a terrific event but it has not generated enough revenue to justify a third year."

Cebit officials were not made available to further discuss the announcement, but the statement seemed to attempt to fend off one likely area of questions, saying that rather than being a setback the decision to cancel the show "is a reflection of a changing high-tech industry as well as the overall US economy."

The demise of Cebit America was announced just six weeks after MediaLive International pulled the plug on this year's Comdex trade show, citing lack of support from major IT vendors as the reason. But attendance at that show had waned in recent years, with fewer key industry announcements made during the Las Vegas event.

Ironically, a press release dated June 23 on the Cebit America website has the headline "Cebit America announces strong vendor commitment for 2005 event," and quotes representatives of IT vendors touting the value of the show for their companies.

While the Cebit America show won't go on, Hannover Fairs USA "will continue to look for opportunities that focus on well-defined vertical markets and user groups," Shafer said in the statement. International Cebit events in Shanghai, Sydney and Istanbul are successful and won't be affected by the decision in the US, the statement said. The company's flagship event in Hanover, Germany, which is the world's largest IT trade show, also apparently is unaffected.

Hannover Fairs USA is the US subsidiary of Deutsche Messe.

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