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Exploring Sustainability and Innovation: Highlights of ITM 2024 Exhibition

Mr. Necip Güney, Chairman of the Board of Teknik Fairs Inc., provides insights into the upcoming ITM 2024 Exhibition, highlighting its main highlights, focus areas, and unique features that distinguish it from other textile machinery exhibitions.

He discusses the significance of sustainability, digitalization, and innovation in shaping the textile industry’s future and outlines the key topics that will be highlighted at ITM 2024.

He shares details about the evolution of the exhibition over the years, the current number of exhibitors confirmed for ITM 2024, and the visitor invitation system introduced for enhanced attendee experience.

Can you tell us about the main highlights and focus areas of the ITM 2024 Exhibition?

First of all, 2023 was recorded as a year in which sustainability, digitalisation and innovation came to the fore. The use of recyclable materials, the adoption of water-saving technologies and efforts to reduce carbon footprint heralded groundbreaking developments in the sector.

Sustainability, digitalisation, artificial intelligence and automation will continue to play a key role for the textile industry in 2024. If we evaluate in this direction; we can summarise the topics that will stand out at ITM 2024 Exhibition as follows: Machines designed to increase production efficiency and reduce costs, new production techniques such as digitalisation, artificial intelligence and automation will be one of the highlight of ITM 2024.

Machines and equipment designed to reduce environmental impact and manufactured from sustainable materials will come to the fore at ITM 2024. Topics such as the use of recyclable materials, energy efficiency, waste reduction solutions, smart weaving machines and production monitoring systems will also be discussed at ITM 2024.

Visitors to the ITM 2024 Exhibition, where innovations from every field of textile from weaving to knitting, from yarn to digital printing, from finishing to denim will discover innovative, nature-protecting and pioneering technologies in digitalisation for a sustainable future.

Textile technology leaders, who previously preferred ITM Exhibition to exhibit their latest innovations, will make their world launches at ITM 2024 Exhibition again.

What makes ITM 2024 different from other textile machinery exhibitions?

ITM Exhibitions, one of the most important meeting points of textile machinery and technology leaders, has the feature of being a textile bridge between eastern and western countries.

The fact that the fair is held in Istanbul, which is geographically the closest point connecting the countries to each other, turns our ITM 2024 exhibition into a centre of attraction for both exhibitors and visitors.

Istanbul, which is located within a 3-hour flight distance to the world’s important trade centres, provides easy access to both the surrounding provinces and the surrounding countries by air, sea and land.

The fact that Turkish Airlines flies to a total of 340 different destinations in 129 countries is also effective in making Istanbul easily accessible. In addition to European countries; Investors from the Middle East, North Africa, Turkic Republics and Balkan countries will be able to reach Istanbul after a 3-hour flight and visit ITM 2024.

On the other hand, the fact that many countries such as India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Vietnam, Egypt, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Iran, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, which are the shining stars of the textile world with their great potential and production power, have visa agreements with Turkey increases the importance of ITM 2024.

The fact that textile manufacturers from countries that have visa problems when travelling to Europe do not have this problem when coming to Istanbul plays an important role in increasing the number of exhibitors and visitors of ITM 2024.

In addition, Istanbul offers great convenience to exhibitors and visitors coming for the exhibition with its accommodation facilities. Thanks to the proximity of the hotels to the fairgrounds, those coming to the ITM Exhibition from Turkey and abroad do not have difficulties in terms of accommodation.

How has the exhibition evolved over the years, and what can attendees expect from the upcoming edition?

It was not easy to make our ITM Exhibition a world brand. The stones of the road to success were formed day by day.

As a result of domestic and international advertising and promotional activities, participation in international exhibitions, gala dinners, company and association visits, promotional videos, news and advertising activities published in magazines and websites, ‘ITM became a World Brand’… Our ITM team participates in many exhibitions organised for the textile sector in Turkey and abroad every year, sets up stands and explains our ITM Exhibition to its visitors.

Our ITM team holds meetings with the important associations of the sector and exchanges ideas about the official and commercial delegations planned to come to the exhibition.

Our successful promotional activities are gave results. Exhibitors, which have reached the number of visitors and sales figures above their expectations in the exhibitions they attended in the past years, have requested to enlarge their stands for ITM 2024.

Especially digital printing and dye-finishing companies decided to participate in the exhibition with larger stands. In addition, there was a significant increase in the number of companies that will attend in ITM 2024 for the first time.

We increased the number of halls from 12 to 13 in order to meet the increasing demands of companies and new exhibitors in line with the targets of expanding our exhibition.

Thanks to the expanded exhibition area, companies that enlarge their stands and have the opportunity to take part in the exhibition for the first time will have the chance to exhibit their products and services in a wider range.

Thousands of professional visitors from all over the world, from Asia to South America, from Africa to the Balkans, will be able to meet with branded companies in the sector. Thanks to the B2B meetings to be organised at the fair, companies will establish new and permanent commercial connections.

Thanks to the ITM 2024 Exhibition, where a billion euro business volume will be realised, the textile machinery sector in the world and Turkey will gain momentum.

Could you provide an update on the current number of exhibitors confirmed for ITM 2024?

ITM Exhibition, which has broken records with the number of exhibitors and visitors every year, has confirmed that it is a world brand with its product diversity, exhibitor-visitor profile and billion euro trade volume.

This was proved by the fact that manufacturers from all over the world such as Andorra, Angola, Honduras, Peru, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Brazil, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Egypt, Iran, Oman purchased a large number of machines and signed strong business partnerships at ITM 2022 Exhibition.

ITM 2022, the last of which was held between 14-18 June 2022, was attended by 1280 companies and company representatives from 65 countries.

ITM 2022 was visited by 64,500 people from 102 countries, 44% of which were international and 56% domestic. So far, 1300 companies and company representatives from approximately 70 countries have taken their places for the ITM 2024 Exhibition.

After ITM 2022, which is the best meeting point of the textile industry and broke records, we believe that ITM 2024 will raise the success bar even higher. The intensive application of visitors to consulates and commercial attaché offices from all over the world shows that ITM 2024 will host a large number of visitors.

Could you provide insights into the visitor invitation system introduced for ITM 2024? How does it enhance the attendee experience?

We have an online invitation system that allows our visitors to easily enter the ITM 2024 Exhibition. Our ITM 2024 Exhibition online invitation system was opened on December 2023.

Our visitors who do not want to miss this great meeting can register online by clicking on the e-invitation link at www.itmexhibition.com.

After filling in the visitor information form, e-invitations are sent to them by e-mail. With this e-invitation, they can get their badge at the entrance of the fairground and enter the ITM 2024 out of turn.

Those who register early for the online invitation system can also benefit from our advantageous prices.

Our online invitation system, which allows our visitors to save time and cost, also offers us, as the organiser, the opportunity to collect and analyse visitor data. This data provides valuable information to understand the exhibitor profile, optimise marketing strategies and plan for future exhibitions.

With the introduction of denim technologies special sections, what opportunities does ITM 2024 offer for companies and professionals in the denim sector?

Turkey, which is the world’s 3rd largest denim clothing producer after China and India, surpasses its competitors with its premium products.

Turkey, which has high technology, strong logistics infrastructure, high quality, flexible, fast and error-free production capability in denim fabric production, is moving towards becoming the denim capital of the world with strong investments.

We are leading the way for denim manufacturers to meet with professional buyers and exhibit their products with the ‘Denim Technologies Special Section’ we have included in our ITM Exhibition.

The ‘Denim Technologies Special Section’, which we opened for the first time at ITM 2022 Exhibition, attracted great interest from the participants. Denim technology manufacturers, who reached a visitor and sales figure above their expectations at the exhibition, wanted to expand their presence at ITM 2024.

We decided to move the ‘Denim Technologies Special Section’ to Hall 11A, taking into consideration the demands of machinery and chemical manufacturers such as washing, bleaching, dyeing, cutting, patterning, finishing, drying, ozone used in denim production to be close to the ‘Dye-Finishing’ halls.

Exhibitors who have already made reservations to take place in their booths with large square metres at ITM 2024 Exhibition will reach and host all buyers of the denim sector directly in their special halls.

The specialised hall where the latest technologies for the sector will be exhibited will also offer a great opportunity for visitors. Visitors to the ‘Denim Technologies Special Section’ will have the opportunity to see innovations closely for the first time. In addition, professional visitors who will meet new suppliers will have the opportunity to examine and compare suppliers from all over the world.

How does ITM 2024 contribute to showcasing future textile innovations and technologies?

With the rapid development of technology, the textile industry, like all other sectors, has turned into a more competitive environment. The production times of the machines have shortened. We have witnessed a new innovation almost every day at every stage of the textile supply chain.

In order for companies to be one step ahead of their competitors, they need to have an original idea, the technical infrastructure to transform this idea into technology and the speed to realise all of these in a short time.

Industry stakeholders, especially textile manufacturers, are now wondering the answer to the question: ‘How will the future of the textile industry, which is digitalising, complying with the principles of sustainability and signing groundbreaking innovations, be? This question will be answered at our ITM 2024 Exhibition. For this reason, we have determined the motto of our ITM 2024 Exhibition as ‘Discover the Future’.

ITM 2024 Exhibition will host the latest innovations, technologies, artificial intelligence supported machines, software and design wonder devices in textile machinery.

Company owners, managers, employees and sector representatives visiting the exhibition will have the opportunity to see the latest technological innovations for the first time and touch the firsts.

Sector representatives, who will open brand new horizons in their minds about textile technologies, will sign brand new products by transforming the extraordinary and original ideas they get at ITM 2024 into design.

Company owners who will be able to get information from experts about the technologies they will use in their factories will develop their products and direct their investments.

Can you share some details about the new knitting technologies showcased at ITM 2024 and their significance in the textile industry?

The knitting machinery sector, which is an important sector on a global scale, continues to grow day by day. Factors such as the increase in the clothing industry, the development of new technologies and the increased use of knitted fabrics are effective in this growth.

According to ITMSS International Textile Machinery Shipment Statistics Report; global shipments of circular knitting machines decreased by 27% to 28,651 units in 2022. In 2022, the number of electronic flat knitting machines shipped decreased by 24% to 72.6 thousand units. In 2022, 3,064 electronic flat knitting machines were shipped to Turkey. In the same year, 2464 circular knitting machines and 62 jacquard machines were shipped.

ITM 2024 Exhibition will bring together hundreds of products such as weft and warp knitting preparation machines, flat and circular knitting machines, hosiery machines, embroidery machines, quilting machines, auxiliary machines and accessories under one roof.

Leading manufacturers of knitting technologies will present faster, more efficient and more flexible knitting machines equipped with automation and digitalisation features.

Digital knitting machines allow customers to produce customised fabrics. In response to increasing sustainability demands in the industry, knitting machinery manufacturers are developing machines that provide energy efficiency and reduce waste production.

Energy efficiency and sustainability-oriented technologies will come to the fore at ITM 2024.

Knitting machinery manufacturers will present solutions that integrate data analytics and smart manufacturing technologies to optimise production processes.

ITM is a vital event for the Turkish textile machinery sector, how do you evaluate the Turkish Textile Machinery Manufacturing sector and its future?

Textile is one of the leading sectors of the Turkish economy. As the 5th largest supplier of textile and raw materials in the world and the 2nd largest supplier in the EU, Turkey has the ability and capacity to deliver high quality products to the world market quickly and at an affordable cost.

The Turkish textile machinery sector plays a critical role in serving Turkey’s textile industry. Turkish textile machinery sector can produce textile machinery in many different functions including weaving, knitting, spinning, dyeing, washing, drying, finishing and ironing.

According to TurkStat labour force data; the Turkish textile machinery sector, in which nearly 230 companies operate, employs 9500 people.

85% of textile machinery manufacturers export their products. 22 companies have R&D and 4 companies have design centres. The Turkish textile machinery sector, which produces with the slogan ‘domestic and national’, is closing the gap between imports and exports every day.

The Turkish textile machinery sector exported an average of 820 million dollars in 2023. Textile dyeing, washing, finishing, finishing machines accounted for 75% of our textile machinery exports. The countries to which our textile machinery sector exported the most in 2022 were Uzbekistan, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Egypt, India, Iran, Russia and Brazil, respectively.

World textile machinery exports are 31 billion dollars and Turkey ranks 8th with a share of 3% of world exports. In 2011, Turkey’s share in global textile machinery exports was 1%, but the continuous increase in Turkey’s share in global exports in 10 years is a source of pride for our entire industry.

As you know, the economic contraction, which started with the pandemic and continued with wars, energy crisis, raw material shortages, high costs, negatively affected our country as well as the whole world.

In February 2023, the great earthquake disaster centred in Kahramanmaraş, which we experienced in February 2023, affected our Kahramanmaraş and Gaziantep provinces, where textiles are the most intense. Turkey had faced global demand contraction in the past years as well.

However, we overcame these difficult times by getting stronger with more investment, more production and more employment. Despite all these difficulties, we are happy to see that Turkish textile machinery manufacturers attach more importance to developing their technologies, creating differences and R&D investments day by day.

The textile industry, one of Turkey’s leading sectors, will continue to produce and contribute to our country’s economy in this temporary period, as in its past experiences. In the coming years, we will experience a period in which our textile machinery manufacturers increase their competitiveness and make our industry stronger by creating differences.

 

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