Fensterbau Looks to Be Bigger than Ever

February 28, 2012
Meetings & Events

With organizers reporting that exhibit space is sold out, Fensterbau/Frontale will once again gather window and door executives from around the world. More than 750 exhibitors from more than 30 countries will be at the biennial fair, scheduled for March 21-24 at the NürnbergMesse in Nuremberg, Germany.

More than 100,000 visitors came to the 2010 edition of the event. "Based on the feedback we have from the markets, we are assuming similar numbers of trade visitors [this year]," says Willy Viethan, exhibitions director for the NürnbergMesse. "The interest is high, this is the world-leading event. Key innovations are shown here first. Of you miss this show, you have to wait two years to be at the leading edge again."

 Roto highlighted the global trend toward larger openings, showing this window fitted with its hardware at the 2010 show. Rehau featured a new lift/slide system for large openings.

The business climate in Germany is strong, Viethan continues, with the window and door industry benefiting particularly, as more people choose to invest in their property.  "As we get visitors from around the world, the rest of the picture gets patchy, as different countries are responding differently to the current economic climate," he adds.  While the markets in some countries may be down, others are up, he says. On balance, he sees global market condition having a positive impact on this year's show.

The 2010 edition of Fenserbau saw an increased emphasis on energy efficiency.  German and European window and door manufacturers and system suppliers were highlighting products designed to meet newer, more demanding energy codes, as well as even more stringent PassivHaus standards. Triple glazing was more prevalent than at previous Fensterbau shows, and other components, such as non-metal spacers and reinforcements and insulated wood framing, were also being highlighted.

Another trend evident two years ago was growing demand for large openings. As has been the case at North America shows, Fensterbau/Frontale has seen a steady increase in door manufacturers and hardware suppliers featuring multipanel sliding and folding systems. The German event in recent years has also seen a notable increase in photovoltaic products, particularly among companies targeting commercial applications. Hardware producers have also showcased a growing variety electronic and automated systems, mostly targeted at commercial applications.

"The key issue is still energy," Viethan notes. "We see this as a driving force around the world–good technology to save energy."  In Germany, in particular, he reports that already-strict energy codes are becoming stricter.

"Of course the fenestration industry has many other solutions and innovations," Viethan adds.  "Here is where the leading technology can be found from all over the world."

For 2012, the list of more than 750 exhibitors features many global industry suppliers, including Elumatec, Roto, Rotox, Veka, Sturtz, Urban and Weinig. Most exhibitors continue to come from Germany, but the number of companies coming from abroad has increased significantly over the past decade. The show now features large contingents from Italy, Turkey, Austria and Switzerland. In recent years, the number of exhibitors coming from Eastern Europe has risen steadily as well.

 At the 2010 show, Stürtz demonstrated a welder that inserted insulating foam pellets into profiles

Suppliers of hardware and profile systems each fill two halls of the Nuremberg trade fair complex.  Multiple halls are also devoted to equipment for processing wood, vinyl and aluminum. Other exhibitors include suppliers of software systems, paints, stains and coatings, and weathersealing and installation products, as well as manufacturers of windows, doors and other fenestration products. A list of exhibitors with North American operations or affiliates is featured below.

One reason Fensterbau has increased in size is expansion into more product categories. Suppliers of glass and IG components had not traditionally participated in the event, but more, such as Edgetech—now Quanex Building Products—and Technoform, have made their way to Nuremberg in recent years. This year, the list of glass and glass equipment suppliers appears to have expanded even further, with such notable additions as  Bystronic and Lisec, two major suppliers of insulating glass equipment.

Another new addition for the 2012 edition is a one-day conference being planned by EuroWindoor, an umbrella organization of European industry associations. Entitled Climate Protection with New Windows, the conference is designed to provide an opportunity to get information on the latest legal and technical developments related to energy efficiency in the European window and façade market, officials note.  Speakers include Ulrich Sieberath, chairman of the CEN/TC33/WG1 group working on windows and doors within the European Committe for Standards (CEN), as well as researchers and representatives of other organizations. More details about the program are available at the EuroWindoor website

The Fensterbau trade fair itself remains the main draw for North American and other international visitors, Viethan notes. "It is a long way to come for a trade show, but this the only place in the world where everything comes together," he concludes. "In the still very tough economic climate, some companies are still able to grow. They all share one common achievement—they are innvovative. Where can you find the most innovations for the fenestration industry in one go? Fensterbau/frontale in Nuremberg, Germany."

A video below of last year's event provided by the organizers provides an overview of the show. More information on the event, including a database of exhibitors and products on display, is available at www.ask-frontale.de or by calling NürnbergMesse's North American office at 770/618-5830. The website also provides information on travel and accommodations in Nuremberg.


Exhibitors with North American operations or affiliates

    Click here to see a preview of products, equipment and services to be featured at the 2012 Fensterbau/Frontale show. Email john@glass.org if your company is interested in submitting information and/or photos.
  • Accoya
  • AGB
  • Akzo Nobel
  • Albat + Wirsam Software
  • Assa Abloy
  • Azon
  • Brio
  • Bystronic Lenhardt
  • Combilift
  • C.R. Laurence
  • Deceuninck
  • Dr. Hahn
  • Elumatec
  • Emmegi
  • Fom
  • G-U Hardware/Ferco
  • hamos Recycling
  • Hegla
  • Hoppe
  • Just Screen
  • Kasto Machine
  • Konrad Hornschuch
  • Lisec Maschinenbau
  • Mecal
  • Pertici
  • Pilkington
  • profine
  • Quanex Building Products/Edgetech Europe
  • Rehau
  • Renolit
  • Roto Frank
  • Rotox
  • Saint Gobain
  • SCM Group
  • Schüco International
  • Sherwin Williams
  • Sika
  • Simonswerk
  • Stürtz Maschinery
  • Sunflex Systems
  • Technoform
  • Tremco/illbruck
  • Trocal
  • UCS Ultraflex Control Systems
  • Unilux
  • Urban Machinery
  • Veka
  • Weinig Group
  • Window & Door Magazine
  • Windowmaker Software
  • Winkhaus
  • Witte Machinery
  • Yale/Paddock Fabrications
  • Zobel