Addressing the need for “water conservation” as the current pressing topic for the building technology sector, Messe Frankfurt India’s first digital trade fair - ISH India powered by IPA Virtual Edition showcased 980 products from 48 brands, including 15 live product demonstrations and 6 knowledge sessions. Establishing itself as a focused b2b digital marketplace for buyers and sellers, the platform recorded 2,052 active attendees and serious business meetings over two days.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the spotlight on hygiene and sanitation as key measures for healthy living, changing climatic trends are an approaching threat that urgently need to be addressed with safe, smart, sustainable building technology solutions. The b2b digital trade fair of ISH India powered by IPA brought back the focus on water as a scarce resource and the imperative need for sustainable and water efficient plumbing accessories and sanitation technologies.
The premiere show for plumbing, sanitation, bathroom fitting and water management system marked its virtual launch on 17 – 18 September 2020 showcasing products by industry leaders like Birla HIL Ltd, Aquaviva India Pvt Ltd,Sekisui Speciality Chemicals, Watertec (India) Pct Ltd, Wilo Mather & Platt, Ebara Machinery India Pvt Ltd, Bradford White Water Heaters, Kirloskar Brothers Ltd, Zoloto Valves, Brilloca Ltd (HSIL), Astral Pipes among others.
The first-ever virtual edition brought together the plumbing, real estate, architecture and design to discuss efficient usage of water conservation technologies in buildings of the future. The trade fair was officiated by Mr Avinash Mishra, Adviser, (Water & Land Resources, Drinking Water and Sanitation, Panchayati Raj, Tourism, Culture, Law & Justice, I&B) NITI Aayog, Government of India together with the National presidents of the Indian Plumbing Association, CREDAI-MCHI, Institute of Indian Interior designers (IIID).
Speaking at the inaugural session, Mr Avinash Mishra stated: “The recent pandemic of corona virus has taught us the prime role of water in maintaining hygienic practices. About 81% of rural households in India do not have individual piped water supply and about one billion people are living with water scarcity at least one part of the year. Through the Jal Jeevan Mission, the government is committed to ensure that 18 Crore households across all villages in India will have potable water supply by 2024. It is high time that we resort to measures to address the crisis and adopt solutions for water conservation, water shed management, ground water recharge, rainwater harvesting, modern and efficient irrigation methods such as micro irrigation and precision farming, and water saving technology in sanitation.”
Elaborating on the steps taken in the real estate sector, Mr Deepak Garodia, President CREDAI MCHI said: “Sewage treatment plants and recycling of water is our major concern. Every project above 20,000 sq feet has a sewage treatment plant (STP) that recycles water to use in flushes, gardens and car washes. Although conservation of water is not easy, we are doing our bit by educating our consumers about the latest technologies available in the market to use water more efficiently.”
Highlighting the need for strong policies, Ms Jabeen Zacharias, President, IIID stated: “Being an architect, we have to balance between a customer’s demands and the need for water conservation. To make this a uniformed practise we need to institutionalise strong policies that highlight the importance of water as a resource. Once these policies are in place, builders, architects and associations can enforce it.”
Talking about the importance of right plumbing in any construction project, Mr Gurmit Singh Arora, President, IPA said: “The plumbing industry today is pegged at INR 5 Lakh Crores in India. The corona virus onslaught has brought in an increase in the water demands with requirements of frequent hand washing, disinfection and hygiene. With water supply already facing acute shortage, this brings about a necessity for the construction industry to focus on reduction in use of water resource and enhance water supply by methods like rain water harvesting and waste water management. Right plumbing mechanisms not only supplies fresh water but also takes away your waste water in a hygienic way.”
Business goes on
The online edition of the show reflected the paradigm shift witnessed by the industry with the live demo feature demonstrating smart and efficient technologies by the most sought-after brands.
Some of the key highlights displayed through the virtual platform include:
- E-Clenz by Hindware: An intelligent WM water closet that controls seat adjustment, water and dryer temperatures, water volume and nozzle position via a remote.
- CNX Water Management System by Watertec (India) Pvt Ltd: An intelligent technical building system that can seamlessly control and analyse up to 150 drinking water installations via smart phones
- SuperTube by Geberit: A revolutionary technology for India, the SuperTube is hydraulically optimised to deliver air ventilation and waste-water drainage through a single pipe system
Commenting on the experience of participating at this year's virtual ISH, Mr Dhirup Roy Choudhary, Managing Director and CEO, HIL Ltd said: "We are happy to have partnered with ISH India and IPA in their first ever virtual edition that has been organised amid the pandemic. When physical meetings can be risky, ISH India has provided us with a platform where, in just two days’ time, we were able to organise over 100 virtual meetings with MEPs, builders and various key stakeholders to explain about our product Birla HIL Pipes and showcase our "TrueFit Technology" along with the range of environment friendly, non-toxic, anti-microbial pipes and fittings to the entire plumbing community, for which we have received a very positive response.”
The two-day seminar hosted in parallel to the digital fair brought together industry experts and stakeholders from the architecture, design, realty and technology sides. A series of 6 knowledge sessions covering the fundamentals of design and materials used in buildings and its interiors, touched upon important topics such as waste water matters and sustainable luxury attracting 532 attendees.
Design Materials and Classics
The first session on Design Materials and Classics emphasised the need for green certification of products that are used in construction projects as this will not only increase the credibility of sustainable buildings but also improve the performance of the solutions used.
Building Architects and Beyond
Imperative but often neglected, this session highlighted the need for synergy between architects and builders. Talking about consolidation Mr Hari Eswaran, Vice President at Larsen & Toubro (Realty) shared: “Architects, builders and vendors form a supply chain for the building construction industry while the end customer is important to the entire value chain. The discussions at ISH India have been fruitful, and working together can certainly add great synergy to future projects.”
Concurring with Mr Eswaran, Ms Sonali Bhagwati, President, DPA said: “The entire process of architectural development has gone through a quantum change. For the current projects, architects must be the composers that lead the team of vendors and consultants in ensuring that sustainable technologies are adopted.”
Waste Water Matters!
The right treatment of waste water in residential and industrial areas can help recycle and re-use water. In India, people, communities and businesses are now getting sensitised over various crucial topics and this is the right time to encourage them to use water management systems. Crucial points like planning of water supply and storage to be considered in the initial stages of construction and architectural projects, the need for active initiative by corporates to make efficient use of water for flushing, gardening etc, as well as more women to lead projects regarding water conservation were the highlights of the seminar.
Ms Simar Kohli Das, Founder Biomimicry / Lifetide, mentioned: “It is not just about the supply of adequate water but also about the right management of water as a resource. Treating water naturally and adding STP’s for projects is essential for the efficient disposal and recycle of waste water in the country.”
Next Gen Washrooms
The panel discussion of Next Gen Washrooms also highlighted the latest technologies that will enter into the market pertaining to the urgent need for hygienic bathroom practises. As a manufacturer, Mr Asutosh Shah, Managing Director, Duravit, mentioned the latest trends in the segment stating that “Touchless is the future. With the current scenario making it even more important, sensor washrooms, toilets, urinals, faucets, basins, soap dispensers that can be used by apps on phones or voice control will be in major demand. Thermostatic technology will not only control the temperature but also the usage of water.”
Sustainable Luxury was another session that caught many eyeballs. Moderating this interesting event Ms Lipika Sud, President, The Guild of Designers and Artists explained: “The perception of anything sustainable is it being expensive. We, as designers, need to change this concept and explain the core reason of using materials and designs that are more sustainable in the long run, as these products are long lasting and better for people’s well-being.”
The busy digital market place enabled exhibitors and visitors to create a total of 4,650 contacts with 215 e-meetings scheduled and 175 business calls made. Although the current restrictions in the country have slowed down business sectors, the positive response received by ISH India powered by IPA Virtual Edition proves that industries are back to business and ready to network and continue trade conversations seriously.
Mr Raj Manek, Executive Director and Board Member, Messe Frankfurt Asia Holdings Ltd shared: “The digital wave swept us into unchartered waters – and while the virtual trade fair was something very new and exciting for us, we knew we had to be equally focused on delivering business value to our exhibitors. The feedback from our customers has re-instilled confidence, both, in the trade fair brand and the need for a virtual platform for business to continue in any given situation. We now aim to strengthen these virtual connections and turn them into face-to-face business encounters through our physical edition of ISH India powered by IPA exhibition in May 2021.” ISH India powered by IPA will take place on 20 – 22 May 2021 at the Bombay Exhibition Center in Mumbai.
ISH India powered by IPA is headed by the biennial ISH event in Frankfurt, Germany, the world’s leading trade fair for HVAC + Water which will next take place as a digital edition from 22 – 26 March 2021. For more information, please visit www.ish.messefrankfurt.com.
Background information on Messe Frankfurt
Messe Frankfurt is the world’s largest trade fair, congress and event organiser with its own exhibition grounds. With about 2,600 employees at 29 locations, the company generates annual sales of around €736 million. We have close ties with our industry sectors and serve our customers’ business interests efficiently within the framework of our Fairs & Events, Locations and Services business fields. One of the Group’s key USPs is its closely knit global sales network, which extends throughout the world. Our comprehensive range of services – both onsite and online – ensures that customers worldwide enjoy consistently high quality and flexibility when planning, organising and running their events. The wide range of services includes renting exhibition grounds, trade fair construction and marketing, personnel and food services. Headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, the company is owned by the City of Frankfurt (60 percent) and the State of Hesse (40 percent).
For more information, please visit our website at: www.messefrankfurt.com