The princess in the fairy tale “The Princess and the Pea” by the Brothers Grimm had to sleep on twenty mattresses and twenty feather eiderdowns in order to prove her noble birth – clear proof of the fact that refinement in sleeping existed even back in the golden age.
In the 21st century, this phenomenon is highly developed and different throughout the world. Visitors to imm cologne can experience this for themselves from 19 to 25 January 2009. In hall 9 of the international Cologne furniture trade fair, under the sub-heading “sleep”, a market segment that is exemplary in its completeness and professionalism will be on display.
Impressive entry of the sleep system professionals
More than a hundred exhibitors at imm sleep will demonstrate how the art of creating the right bed to sleep on is an exciting topic, which, with its high-tech appeal, can also enthuse male consumers and give them something to take home with them. In the words of Dr. Ulrich Leifeld, Managing Director of the Professional Association of the Mattress Industry: “In the fourth year of imm sleep, the concentrated excellence of the branch once again awaits us. Many things become easier with every passing year – for example the industry meeting on the Tuesday after the close of the trade fair, “meet@sleep”, has become a must-attend party with a history. Similarly, it is now taken for granted that the professional association will present itself with market-relevant topics.
Apart from this, we would also like to use the year 2009 to focus even more attention on sleep-related consultancy and advice.” He sees imm cologne, as the leading trade fair for sleep and sleep systems, as just the right place for this. Marjan Reitsma, Communications Manager of the Dutch firm Auping, also stresses the importance of the Cologne furniture trade fair. “For us, imm cologne is the most important trade fair in Europe. A growing firm such as Auping is constantly on the lookout for new customers. Apart from this, we are also constantly working on expanding our existing partnerships. imm cologne serves as a good meeting place for this endeavour, and we trust that the organisers on their part will further expand the exhibition space for sleep systems.”
There is rising interest in getting a good night’s sleep
A measure, which makes sense in the much courted German market. This is the conclusion the BBE Retail Experts come to in their study “market excellence: Home & Interior 2008”. For their latest statistics, the market researchers based in Cologne have bundled living spaces together into various emotional worlds, in which the corresponding accessories and electronic appliances are also included. Here is what they have to say in their study with respect to the area “Cocooning & Retirement”: “As far as bedding goes, at 1.3 billion euros, mattresses comprise the largest and also most stable segment in terms of growth.”
The export-oriented firm Auping comes to a similar conclusion for the international market – despite the current arrest in the consumption of long-lasting goods in the West: “An increased interest on the part of the consumer in good, healthy sleep is discernable, something that goes hand-in-hand with the readiness to spend more on good mattresses and sleep systems.”
Innovation is a matter of honour
When it comes to novelties in hall 9, there will be genuine crackers in Cologne. The trends: In the high-end segment, sleep system professionals are presently working on matching mattresses with reclining systems more exactly – comfort functions for laptops etc. included. Manufacturers of box spring beds will present jazzed-up designs. And water bed manufacturers are working on reclining pressure measurements for optimal comfort. The topic “Natural Living”, already relevant for a long time now in the sensitive sleep segment, will receive even more attention through various systems – including with naturally produced cold foam.
And for the increasing number of people plagued with allergies, there are also novelties in store: thin heated mattresses to prevent house dust mites for example. Because the complex topic of “sleep systems” has to be presented in such a manner that it can be experienced through the senses even in the 21st century, manufacturers have also come up with very cleverly-devised marketing measures with a strong emotional appeal. It is not only princesses who will be bewitched by the magic of untroubled sleep in Cologne.