Largest trade fair UNICERA embraces the industry in its 20th year
UNICERA Ceramics and Bathroom Trade Fair held in Istanbul in the month of April of each year since 1988 was held at TÜYAP Beylikdüzü Trade Fair and Convention Center this year from April 9 to April 13, 2008.
In the opening ceremony of 20th UNICERA Trade Fair held under the collaboration of Turkish Ceramics Federation, TIMDER Installation and Building Materials Suppliers Association and TÜYAP Tüm Fuarcılık Yapım A.Ş., Turkish Ceramics Federation President Adnan Polat, TÜYAP Chairman of Board of Directors Bülent Ünal, President of TIMDER and TIMFED Kemal Yıldırım, Chairman of TÜYAP Executive Board Serdar Yalçın and Chairman of Istanbul Chamber of Industry Tanıl Küçük were present.
The opening ceremony of 20th UNICERA Trade Fair started with the opening speeches by TÜYAP Chairman of Board of Directors Bülent Ünal and TÜYAP Chairman of Executive Board Serdar Yalçın; and Kemal Yıldırım, Chairman of TIMDER Installation and Building Materials Suppliers Association and TIMFED Chairman Kemal Yıldırım took the floor subsequently. At the opening ceremony which continued with the speech by Turkish Ceramics Federation President Adnan Polat, Polat evaluated the ceramics industry he has been part of since 1972. Polat said; “In 1972, the total production was not even 1 million square meters; we produce 360 million square meters of tiles and 23 million pieces of sanitary ware. The trade fair area was 100 square meters and there was no product to exhibit. Now, we have a display area of over 40,000 square meters. Firms have come from 20 square meter areas to display their products to 500 square meters today. There has been a serious development in the ceramics industry thanks to investors, industrialists and employees”. Polat, who said that he spoke for the last time as the President of Turkish Ceramics Federation, added; “When I took post, there were a lot of things I wanted to do and looking back, I see that there are still many things to be done. I have been holding this position for a long time and now, I pass this flag to another friend who I believe will be successful. As someone who has always stressed the importance of unity and togetherness, I believe that the Subsidies Act will create problems and lead to unfair competition in the industry”. Polat ended his words by thanking everyone who has made a contribution to the foundation of the Federation and made efforts in preparation of the trade fair. Chairman of Istanbul Chamber of Industry Tanıl Küçük, who spoke after Adnan Polat, said; “We are proud of the achievements of the ceramics industry”.
The opening ceremony ended with the cutting of the opening ribbon of UNICERA 2007. Those attending toured the stands accompanied by Ceramics Federation President Adnan Polat.
From 8,500 people to 60,000…
The UNICERA Trade Fair, which was first held 20 years ago in 1987 on an area of 3,500 square meters at Istanbul Exhibition Palace under the title of “Bathroom, Ceramics and Kitchen Trade Fair”, was visited by 42 firms in total; 28 local and 14 foreign, and 8,500 individuals. Yet, in 2008, more than 60,000 local and international guests visited the UNICERA Trade Fair where over 170 firms had stands, displaying faiences, ceramic tiles, vitreous ware, bathtubs, fixtures, bathroom furniture and accessories, granite, natural stone, glass mosaic, marble, Jacuzzi and ceramics side industry products. Visitors from 50 different countries lead by Bulgaria, Israel, Italy, Greece, England, Rumania, Germany, Spain, Russia, U.S.A., Australia, Holland and Ukraine visited the trade fair.
The first event held on the occasion of the UNICERA Trade Fair was on Thursday, April 10th. ‘Lunch with Ceramics Engineering Student’, ‘Valade Amland Conference’ and ‘Ceramic Symposium’ were held at the event organized as Architects Day. Mr. Valade Amland, Member of Board of Directors, Danish Designers Organization gave a speech with the theme design. Senior university students studying in the fields of ceramic art and ceramics science viewed with interest this speech which was simultaneously translated into Turkish. Turkish Ceramics Federation Secretary General Germiyan Saatçioğlu, Ceramics Research Center Director Prof. Ferhat Kara, TOBB Ceramics and Refractories Assembly Consultant Prof. Dr. Burhanettin Inem, Eczacıbaşı Building Group R&D Director Hidayet Özdemir, Undersecretariat of Foreign Trade General Directorate of Exports Head of Industry Department Bilgehan Şaşmaz attended the ceramics symposium on “Turkish Ceramics Industry and Sustainable Development” as speakers. Germiyan Saatçioğlu gave a presentation describing the journey of the Turkish ceramics industry up to today and its present state. He stressed the needs required discussing the weak and powerful aspects of the industry. Prof. Dr. Ferhat Kara, describing the university-industry collaboration functioning in the ceramics industry, talked about the facilities and contributions to the industry, of Eskişehir Anadolu University Ceramics Research Center (SAM). Hidayet Özdemir, on the other hand, described the compliance of Turkish ceramics industry with European Union regulations and provided information on the Technical Legislation, Environmental and Trade Regulations and related directives in EU. The symposium moderated by Prof. Dr. Burhanettin Inem was viewed by those attending with interest, who expressed that they were closely interested on the topic by questions they directed at the end of the speeches.
On the Masters Day held on Friday, April 11, gifts and packed lunches were distributed to Master Craftsmen and meetings and trade fair visits were held.
Live links were made through the day from CNN Türk through the course of the trade fair. Industry representatives provided important details on the trade fair and the industry in interviews held in five minute spans. Turkish Ceramics Federation Secretary General Germiyan Saatçioğlu gave two separate interviews where he talked about the industries and state of the industry, the trade fair and Ceramics Honor Awards.
Ceramics Promotion Group at UNICERA
Through the UNICERA Trade Fair, Ceramics Promotion Group (STG) continued its efforts on promoting the Turkish ceramic ware in the global market. While on the one hand international communication activities and trade fair preparations were carried out, on the other hand, Accor collaboration project was realized for UNICERA 2008 Trade Fair where Turkish ceramic ware were displayed. Under the said project, 650 ticket cards were prepared for the purchaser international customers of firms operating in the industry and sent to the addresses of customers attached to a letter of invitation according to lists received from firms. 300 Euros was credited to the ticket cards of 150 international guests visiting the Turkish ceramics stand at the trade fair sent by cargo to their addresses to be used in various restaurants and hotels in Istanbul.
‘Ceramics Honor Awards’
Ceramics Honor Awards handed out since 2003 on the occasion of UNICERA Ceramics and Bathroom Trade Fair at the awards ceremony organized by Turkish Ceramics Federation were given in 5 different categories this year, with awardees comprising of esteemed individuals who have made a contribution to the art, education and industry of ceramics. The awardees were decided by Turkish Ceramics Association, TIMDER Installation and Building Materials Suppliers Association, SERKAP Ceramic Tile Manufacturers Association, SERSA Ceramic Sanitary Ware Manufacturers Association and SERHAM Ceramics, Glass and Cement Raw Materials Association. The honor awards were again designed as last year by Prof. Hamiye Çolakoğlu.
At the ceremony held with wide participation of the ceramics industry;
“Sales and Marketing Discipline Ceramics Honor Award” offered by TIMDER went to Ferhan Özkalp.
Science, Art and Technology Discipline Ceramics Honor Award given by TSD went to Prof. Dr. Bekir Karasu.
“Ceramics, Glass and Cement Raw Materials Discipline Ceramics Honor Award” given by SERHAM went to Ilhami Tezcan.
“Ceramics Sanitary Ware Ceramics Honor Award” given by SERSA went to Adnan Hilmi Torgul.
“Ceramic Tile Ceramic Honor Award” given by SERKAP went to Hasan Sazcı.