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www.psi-network.de PSI Journal 2/2016 in second place, after television, on the scale of net advertising revenues of advertising media,” Freter summarised. However, sales of promotional products have become disconnected from the development of the overall economic cycle, as GWW President Patrick Politze explained. He sees the cause of the industry’s failure to keep up with the economic growth in tax disadvantages, excessive compliance requirements, especially for big corporations, and the legal restrictions the industry is having to struggle with. Here there is important work to be done which the enlarged, restructured GWW will be taking on in the future. VERY POSITIVE PROSPECTS The annually updated industry report on the structure and business performance of the European promotional products business, published by PSI, is also showing an upward tendency. On the whole, 62 per cent of suppliers and 60 per cent of promotional products consultants in Europe chalked up sales increases in 2015 compared to the previous year. By contrast, 24 per cent of suppliers and 22 per cent of distributors registered a drop in sales. So this is a clearly positive record which, how- ever, indicates a very uneven performance for individual companies. Yet the outlook remains very positive, since an impressive majority of companies are expecting sales growth in the coming five years. Among suppliers, these amount to 84 per cent, and 83 per cent among promotional products consultants. Another figure worth noting is the magnitude of the predicted sales growth: 46 per cent of suppliers and a whopping 54 per cent of distributors are expecting growth of more than ten per cent. TARGET GROUP EXPANSION 2017: NEW OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE INDUSTRY The PSI is changing – nothing shows this as clearly as the expansion of target groups planned for 2017, which Michael Freter addressed at the opening of the trade show. “Expansion of target groups does not mean that the PSI is ‘opening up’, but rather the possibility of promotional products consultants to invite their clients on the last day of the trade show,” Freter clarified. “All customers invited by the trade are qualified and accredited in advance, and receive specially marked admission tickets with an endorsement on them. So suppliers will continue to be obligated to the trade.” The aim of this decision, borne by great responsibility for the industry and mutual trust, is to enhance the market opportunities of suppliers as well as the trade and consultants, Freter said. “Since the PSI is Europe’s leading trade show, it offers the best opportunities for promotional products to reach larger groups of advertisers,” Freter explained. Patrick Politze agreed, “We would be very happy to welcome advertisers invited by consultants and be able to convince them of our industry’s capabilities. Nowhere does the industry give as good an account of itself as here in Düsseldorf at the PSI. I consider passing this impression onto the decision-makers in companies to be the most important signal of our industry.” PSI: THE INDUSTRY’S “DISPLAY WINDOW” IN EUROPE In years past, the PSI has done a great deal to enhance its attractiveness, its international relevance, and its function as Europe’s most important display window for the industry and as a business broker. This course was consistently pursued at the PSI 2016. After this initial overview, you can read our comprehensive trade show report in the upcoming issue. 9

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