ECCIR had the privilege of speaking with Frank Defalco, the Director, Member Relations at Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen), about Canada’s participation in HANNOVER MESSE 2024 and 2025 and the value of international collaboration for Canadian advanced manufacturing innovators.

NGen is an EEN Canada Local Cooperation Partner.

1. NGen is leading Canadian efforts for Canadian participation in HANNOVER MESSE 2024 and 2025. What can you tell us about this project? What makes HANNOVER MESSE special for potential Canadian participants?

As one of the world’s leading trade fairs for industry, particularly manufacturing, HANNOVER MESSE showcases groundbreaking innovations, products, and services to an international industrial audience. From development to production to logistics, energy supply to shop floor solutions, HANNOVER MESSE presents cross-industry solutions and interface technologies for the entire ecosystem.

For Canadian companies with international ambitions, HANNOVER MESSE is an opportunity to gain exposure and be recognized on the world stage. In 2023, NGen hosted the first-ever Canada Pavilion, which was home to 17 co-exhibitors and over 40 delegates this past April. This past year’s show proved successful in connecting Canada with international players and putting cutting-edge technology on the map. Growing awareness and international connections are only increasing in importance, which is why in 2024, Canada will have 4 pavilions across the show, and in 2025, Canada will take the main stage as the event’s partner country.

“For Canadian companies with international ambitions, HANNOVER MESSE is an opportunity to gain exposure and be recognized on the world stage.”

2. HANNOVER MESSE invited Canada to act as the partner country for 2025. Why is this relevant?

Being the most significant advanced manufacturing fair in the world, HANNOVER MESSE enables Canada to highlight our commitment to manufacturing and advanced technology across the industry. This opportunity allows the country to build awareness, attract direct investment, and create international partnerships to drive economic development. Canada’s presence at the show will demonstrate that we are not only known for our beautiful wilderness but for innovation and advanced economy.

3. How is NGen extending its global outreach, and could you provide some insights into the mechanisms through which this expansion is taking place?

During NGen’s first five years, we enabled the development of Canada’s advanced manufacturing capabilities by investing in innovative new processes and products through our Supercluster program. For our new five-year mandate, we are excited to continue funding advanced manufacturing projects but plan to assist Canadian companies in showcasing these new capabilities on the international stage. By hosting pavilions and delegations at established and upcoming shows, our strategy is to ensure that Canadians are innovating at home and being recognized on the world stage. To ensure participation by Canadians, NGen is de-risking international opportunities by providing funding, advice, and expertise.

HANNOVER MESSE is a key event in our efforts to grow international awareness, but when it comes to building the ecosystem, Canadians excel in a variety of different technological areas. NGen believes it’s of the utmost importance to have a Canadian presence at events around the globe. By attending events with a specific focus, such as Formnext for additive manufacturing or Green tech at The Greener Manufacturing Show, we ensure that we are represented in both specific areas and the entire ecosystem.

“Canada’s presence at the show will demonstrate that we are not only known for our beautiful wilderness but for innovation and advanced economy.”

4. What role does Europe play for Canadian Advanced Manufacturing?

It is no secret that the European market is known for its excellence in manufacturing and propelling innovation. As the Canadian advanced manufacturing ecosystems grow, it is essential to build partnerships with industry pioneers. For many advanced technologies, such as additive manufacturing, a significant portion of innovation is developed in Europe. Ensuring we invite Canadians to engage in the international market is an opportunity for them to learn about emerging tech, engage with industry, and bring technology back to Canada.

Since the introduction of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), many see Europe as a new opportunity for their goods and services. The importance of sustainable solutions for the European marketplace is a significant opportunity in the near- and long-term future, which Canadian companies are well-placed to take advantage of.

5. What does it mean for you to work with partners and colleagues from around the world?

I am passionate about exploring new technologies and connecting with people. The contacts I make around the world help inspire my work with new points of view and great ideas to bring back to the ecosystems I facilitate.


NGen Call for Delegates: Hannover Messe 2024

NGen is looking for delegates to join Hannover Messe, the world’s largest advanced manufacturing trade show and conference, coming this April 22-26, 2024, in Hannover, Germany. Space is limited and available on a first come-first serve basis. Learn more and register here.