KINTEX to Go Bigger

Strives to attract international mega exhibitions and conventions

Korea International Exhibition Center (KINTEX) has established itself as Korea's largest exhibition and convention center as it has become the venue of Korea's "Big Seven"premier exhibitions, including the Seoul Motor Show, Korea Electronics Show, Korea Machinery Fair and Soul International Machine Tool Show.
"A policy of making an exhibition center bigger pays off. Small-size consumer exhibitions and academic circles"conventions are being held in exhibition centers in downtown Seoul and bigger exhibitions and conventions are moving into KINTEX,"KINTEX CEO Han Joon-woo said in an interview with a vernacular newspaper.
Han expressed the hope that KINTEX would attract such international mega-exhibitions and conventions as the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS), ITMA, the world's largest textile machinery show, and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). Korea's Big Seven exhibitions have already been held in KINTEX with the scale of exhibitions going bigger, and when KINTEX's planned second expansion is complete, all exhibitions and conventions will be held in a more successful manner, he said.
He said, "KINTEX will begin its expansion project within this year and transform itself into a large-scale exhibition center, and we're going to make preparations so that we can hold exhibitions and conventions upon the completion of the expansion."
KINTEX will see its exhibition space double as the Gyeonggi provincial and the Goyang City municipal governments will complete its second exhibition center by 2011 in cooperation with the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA).
The project will cost the two governments 120.4 billion won and KOTRA 18.3 billion won. The reason for the expansion is that KINTEX is still insufficient to accommodate exhibitions on an international scale.
KINTEX's second exhibition center, with exhibition space of 54,000 sq. meters,
the same size as the existing one, will be built on a lot of 743,000 sq. meters near the existing exhibition center. When the expansion project is completed, KINTEX is expected to establish itself as a full-blown exhibition center of an international scale with exhibition space of more than 100,000 sq. meters.
Han predicted that KINTEX will post more than 1 billion won in profit for 2008.
KINTEX passed its break-even point just three years since its establishment by posting 307 million won in net income for 2007.
KINTEX advanced by one year its goal of reaching the break-even point it set in April 2005 when it opened its doors.
It has joined the ranks of profitable exhibition centers such as COEX in Seoul and BEXCO in Busan. KINTEX's business performance is drawing keen attention as a majority of foreign exhibition centers usually take seven to eight years to register overall profits after their opening. The 2007 business performance report submitted at KINTEX's board meeting and annual shareholders'
meeting held at the Palace Hotel in Seoul on March 3, showed that KINTEX raked in 18.47 billion won in revenues, a whopping 17.6 percent surge from 2006 to post 307 million won in operating income.
KINTEX accommodated 89 exhibitions and 376 conventions in 2007 to raise its operation rate from 50.6 percent in 2006 to 53 percent in 2007. It saw spectators surging to 3.75 million in 2007, up from 3.15 million in 2006,
particularly with the number of foreign buyers more than doubling to 86,000 from 40,000 in 2006.
KINTEX's advance past the break-even point was due to its successive accommodations of mega exhibitions. It succeeded in hosting all of the nation's "Big Seven"exhibitions, including the Seoul International Machine Tool Show, the Seoul Motor Show and the Kyunghyang Housing Fair. In particular, the Seoul International Machine Tool Show and the Seoul Motor Show have grown to become among the world's top four and top six exhibitions in their respective area following their KINTEX accommodation.
CEO Han was appointed as the fourth president of KINTEX at the 10th board of directors'meeting held on July 29. He served as executive vice president of Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) before taking the helm of the convention center. Han, an expert in trade and commerce, has been with KOTRA for more than 30 years. nw

(above) A grandiose facade of KINTEX in Goyang, north of Seoul, that promises to be a world-class mega-exhibition center. KINTEX CEO Han Joon-woo (inset)
A bird-eye view of KINTEX

A night view of KINTEX, which has attracted Korea's Big Seven Exhibitions.

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