Spielwarenmesse eG takes over Spiel event

Published on: 11th January 2022

Spiel will continue to be held at the Essen exhibition centre and organised from Bonn by Dominique Metzler and her team.

Spielwarenmesse eG has become the new owner of the biggest public fair for board games in the world. The group says that Spiel will continue to be held at the Essen exhibition centre and organised from Bonn by Dominique Metzler, its director of many years’ standing, and her highly experienced team. Florian Hess, member of the Executive Board of Spielwarenmesse eG, will serve as an additional director.

Spiel has a history stretching back nearly 40 years and has developed from a small gathering of players in 1983 to what is now the largest consumer fair in the world today for board, card and role-playing games. Traditionally, new national and international games products are introduced to a broad audience at the Essen exhibition centre in the autumn. Every year the event has some 200,000 visitors, and the numbers have been growing.

“It was important to me to retain the unique profile of Spiel for the future,” commented Dominique Metzler, who with Rosemarie Geu has successfully established and built up the family business over recent decades. “I am very pleased to have found in Spielwarenmesse eG, with its experience in worldbeating fairs, a partner that can continue and further develop the success of this fair on my model for the coming decades. My team and I are delighted to be working alongside them.”

The pandemic has given an additional boost to the popularity of board games. In 2020, the German games market alone grew by 21%; a trend that is apparent at the Spielwarenmesse. The Internationale Spieleerfindermesse – Game Inventors Convention is being integrated into the Spielwarenmesse, further strengthening the games business area at the February show. However, the Nuremberg organisers have confirmed that the Spiel games fair in Essen will be maintained as a separate event in its original form, where visitors can continue to try games out.

Christian Ulrich, spokesperson for the Executive Board of Spielwarenmesse, added: “In the Spielwarenmesse and the Spiel games fair, we have two entirely different concepts, but those concepts intersect powerfully in terms of subject matter, creating plenty of synergies. With Spiel, we are expanding our responsibilities in the business area for games, without changing the typical character of the fair.”



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