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The digital economy is increasing its focus on users, values and taking a stance

A successful DMEXCO: Around 1,000 exhibitors from 40 countries, including the most valuable companies in the technology sector, more than 600 speakers and around 40,000 visitors attended Europe's most important event for the digital economy in Cologne this year. Under this year's motto "Trust In You", decision-makers from digital business, marketing and innovation discussed the increasingly central role of trust in the relationships between users and consumers, as well as companies and their digital services. The newly designed Future Park in Hall 9, the Demo Arena and the DMEXCO app all made successful debuts at the event. DMEXCO will be taking place at the Koelnmesse exhibition grounds once again on 23 and 24 September 2020.
September 13, 2019

Ethical conduct is increasingly becoming an important factor for the European digital industry in competition with China and the USA. Companies are recognizing the need for technology to more clearly demonstrate its benefits for people, while marketing has to respect privacy and focus on user interests. At DMEXCO in Cologne, the industry took an in-depth look at solutions that can help achieve these goals better in the future.


Leading media agencies and advertisers are confirming that privacy, i.e. the handling of personal user data, is the biggest challenge currently facing the industry. A recent survey of experts representing over 90 percent of the digital media volume in Germany conducted by the specialist group of online media agencies (FOMA) within BVDW was presented at DMEXCO. The results: 77 percent of the experts at media agencies and advertisers are of the opinion that the European GDPR and the currently discussed version of the e-privacy regulation benefit US rather than European companies. 86 percent of the respondents even see the European digital industry in danger of being left behind by American and Asian companies.


The experts at FOMA nevertheless predict that the demand for digital advertising will remain at a high level. Within digital marketing, advertisers and agencies expect growth above all in addressable TV and digital audio. Expenditures are expected to increase by 20 percent for addressable TV compared to the previous year and even by 21 percent for digital audio. According to experts, this is primarily due to the increasing use of smart speakers and voice assistants in smart phones.


Successful debut of the Future Park


The new Future Park concept celebrated a successful premiere among visitors and exhibitors alike. On around 7000 square meters right at the entrance of hall 9, 175 technology leaders, visionaries and start-ups presented their products and services centered around relevant current and future technology topics ranging from artificial intelligence, big data, mixed reality and smart technologies to mobility, IoT and blockchain.


“We are very pleased with the positive response to the Future Park. This confirms our vision of innovative and exceptional products, not only as drivers for us, but for the digital economy as a whole. Next year we will therefore continue to expand the topic of start-ups,” says Christoph Menke, Director Sales & Operations DMEXCO.


Demo Arena scores with product highlights


Visitors were able to experience the perfect product pitch this year in the Demo Arena in Hall 6. Companies had the opportunity to present their digital products or services to the public in 20-minute slots. Audience members could provide direct feedback using an interactive voting tool. It was very well received and the product presentations were full throughout the event.


The two formats for knowledge transfer—seminars and worklabs—were also consistently well attended on both days of the fair. Visitors had the opportunity to gain valuable input and relevant knowledge in the form of exciting case studies and tangible how-to sessions, or to discuss relevant questions and experience in small groups.


Visitors impressed with DMEXCO app


The new DMEXCO app, which not only contains the electronic ticket but also many other useful features, was used on site for the first time. The networking feature proved particularly impressive. According to initial evaluations, over 90 percent of all participants took advantage of the opportunity to network with other members of the community on site. Three quarters of the users accepted incoming contact requests. In the simultaneous DMEXCO visitor survey, a good two thirds of visitors rated the networking feature as good or excellent. Around 70 percent receive the latest industry news all year round via the DMEXCO website and app.


SevenVentures Pitch Day: ArtNight wins renowned start-up competition


DMEXCO and SevenVentures, the investment arm of ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE, continued their strategic partnership this year as well. With the SevenVentures Pitch Day (7VPD), they again sought the most innovative start-up in the B2C sector. This year’s winner was ArtNight. Founded in 2016, the Berlin start-up organizes creative experiences in bars and restaurants in several German cities. At the events, participants have the opportunity to create their own artwork in just a few hours with the guidance of a local artist. As prize money, ArtNight has won an extensive media and service package consisting of three million euros in TV advertising money and 30,000 euros for the production of its own TV spot. The package also includes a four-month mentoring program by Flaconi, one of Germany’s leading online perfumeries.


“We are thrilled and thankful! This opportunity will enable us to bring more people together offline. With our edutainment experiences ArtNight, ShakeNight, BakeNight and PlantNight we are now able to reach mass market faster!,” said founder Aimie-Sarah Carstensen.


#DMEXCO19 statements

“At this year’s DMEXCO, the digital economy impressively demonstrated its willingness to seriously tackle ethically motivated challenges and focus more on the needs of users in the future,” says Gerald Böse, CEO of Koelnmesse.


“Over the past few years, DMEXCO has developed into a true trendsetter for the digital economy. Now in its eleventh year of existence, it has become much more than just an annual event. Its establishment as a content platform has exceeded our expectations. At the same time, DMEXCO remains by far the most important format for the global digital business—it is where transactions take place. This is in line with the feedback from visitors and exhibitors, many of whom are BVDW members,” adds Matthias Wahl, President of BVDW, the conceptual and technical sponsor of DMEXCO.


“According to initial analysis, 89 percent of our visitors would recommend a visit to DMEXCO to a good business friend. We will be working hard to convince the remaining eleven percent in 2020,” concludes the DMEXCO Board including Chief Advisor Dr. Dominik Matyka, Judith Kühn (Conference), Christoph Menke (Sales & Operations) and Christoph Werner.


Further statements about DMEXCO 2019


Christoph Kull, Vice President & Managing Director Adobe Central Europe: “With the issue of trust, DMEXCO has honed in on an important topic at exactly the right time, because trust in a brand is not only the foundation of every good customer relationship, but increasingly becoming a competitive advantage as well. Companies that deliver a positive customer experience have the opportunity to build valuable trust and gain relevance. DMEXCO 2019 clearly shows that the technical infrastructure and creative excellence are in place—now it is up to the brands to communicate transparently with their customers, create clear added value for customers from data, and invest sustainably in the quality of these relationships.”


Paul Mudter, Managing Director Operations Ad Alliance: “Boom—with our appearance at DMEXCO, we were able to show what makes Germany’s big players the talk of DMEXCO, for example with our new offers for cross-device targeting and contextual tagging via AI. We not only managed to present Ad Alliance as a skilled partner for advertising clients and media agencies in a new, modern look and expand its charisma with media impact, but also make it possible to honestly experience its relevance up close. We underscored the fair’s central leitmotif ‘Trust in You’.”


Florian Hübner, founder and Co-CEO of Uberall: “There was a lot of talk beforehand—and in the end we are positively surprised at how expressively and in-depth exhibitors and visitors discussed the motto ‘Trust In You’. What is particularly remarkable for us in this regard is the potential that trust brings with it. If we jointly declare trust to be a top priority, it will become important for companies to focus more on people. Marketing has to be more than just selling. This is exactly what we want to contribute to—with our technology solution and as a partner and employer.”


Marc Hundacker, Managing Director Awin DACH: “DMEXCO is like a big family reunion. Everyone gets together once a year to talk about the status quo and the future of the industry. For us DMEXCO is the most important event of the year! A big applause to the organizers for how smoothly the event went!”


Björn Radau, Director Marketing & Communications DACH at Teads: “DMEXCO once again proved to be important for us as marketers due to its business-driven nature. Nowhere else can you make so many appointments with advertisers and their agencies in such a short time. In comparison to years past, the level of internationality has increased further. The fair seemed calmer overall and the professionalism of the visitors was exceptionally high.”


Claas Voigt, Managing Director of emetriq: “Just before the fourth quarter starts, DMEXCO is a huge opportunity for us as data partners with agencies and their customers to prepare for the time of year that is so strong for advertising. Personal meetings create closeness and trust.”


Miriam Thome, Director Marketplace Management at Xandr: “For us as a global company, major industry events such as DMEXCO are highly relevant. Although exclusive in-house events offer their own unique advantages, DMEXCO gives us the opportunity to meet with our customers and colleagues from around the world to share insight on the latest industry topics and trends. This year in particular, an effective presence at DMEXCO was of particular importance to us, as we appeared for the first time as Xandr, AT&T’s advertising and analytics company. We are happy not only to present ourselves as a new brand, but also to introduce new strategic products for buyers and sellers.”


Alexander Gösswein, Regional Managing Director CMR at Criteo: “This year, the industry has shown how multifaceted it has become. Seven years ago, the main focus was on core business. In 2019 companies are looking beyond their own product portfolios at diversity, sustainability, data sovereignty, transparency and values. The mindset of marketing makers is moving into focus, not only at the stands, but also in the panel discussions. We are assuming responsibility and taking our role in society seriously. But that doesn’t diminish business at all. DMEXCO has maintained its high-quality audience in 2019 as well.”


Dr. Christian Deuringer, Global Brand Manager of Allianz SE: “Companies cannot avoid following a proper ESG strategy in their investments and brand strategy in the future. Customers want sustainability and brands are also responsible. That’s why, in addition to making new electric mobility concepts possible, we are also involved as an investor in platforms such as Formula E, which bring the topic of sustainability and climate change to the general public – and put us in the pole position”.



DMEXCO is the meeting place and a community for key players in digital business, marketing, and innovation. We bring together industry leaders, marketing and media professionals, and tech pioneers to set the digital agenda. Both globally informed and locally focused, DMEXCO offers an ecosystem with seminars, debates, and expositions outlining the future of the digital economy and driving market value.

With 40,000 visitors, 1,000 exhibitors and more than 600 speakers from around the world for a one-of-a-kind event each year in Cologne, DMEXCO has set the standard as the place for business minds to learn and inspire, build connections, and for ideas to become actions. DMEXCO — where tomorrow’s digital business happens today.

The German Association for the Digital Economy (BVDW e.V.) — with special participation from the Circle of Online Marketers (OVK) — is the ideational and professional partner of DMEXCO and the owner of the DMEXCO brand. DMEXCO is organized by Koelnmesse.

DMEXCO 2020 will be taking place on 23 and 24 September 2020 in Cologne. All information as well as photos, videos and original audio clips for DMEXCO 2019 can be found at,, and