KölnKongress: Facts and figures 2016, review 2017

  • KölnKongress © KölnKongress GmbH
    © KölnKongress GmbH

KölnKongress looks back on an successful business year 2016: the highest level of revenues in of the company's history was registered and international congresses, large companies and well-known artists ensured a versatile and successful event year. Both the number of events and the number of visitors managed to maintain the high level of the previous year, and the total utilization of KölnKongress's facilities was almost at the same level as last year. "2016 was not an easy year for the event sector, so we are delighted to have been able to match the positive figures of the previous year and, particularly in this year, to have recorded the highest turnover since the founding of KölnKongress", said Bernhard Conin, Managing Director of KölnKongress GmbH. "As a result of the terror attacks in Paris and the violence on New Year's Eve in Cologne itself, short-term event bookings were down everywhere in the first half-year of 2016. Particularly pleasing, therefore, were the extremely high booking figures in the second half of the year, which made this result possible.”

The outlook is once again good for 2017: the Gürzenich has already been able to book numerous events in the medical field, the calendar of the Tanzbrunnen is already filled with popular crowd-pullers, the Congress-Centrum Koelnmesse is the guarantee for successful congresses, meetings and branch meetings and the Flora Köln Is in great demand for company events, conferences, cultural events as well as private parties.

I. Facts and figures about the congress year of 2016
In 2016, 2,222 events (2015: 2,142) were held on the premises of KölnKongress, which corresponds favourably with the high level of the previous year. Of these events, 1,136 were supporting events at trade fairs (2015: 1,107). The events were attended by 944,000 guests (2015: 931,000), representing a small increase. The Tanzbrunnen, in particular, registered a further increase compared to the previous year with 522,000 visitors.

The total number of events (2,122) in all objects
breaks down – sorted according to types of event – as follows:

  • 63 % Congresses and meetings
  • 6 % Cultural events
  • 1 % Fairs and exhibitions
  • 21 % Social events
  • 5 % Carnival events
  •  4 % Other events

The total number of visitors (944.000) in all objects
breaks down – sorted according to types of event – as follows:

  • 23 % Congresses and meetings
  • 25 % Cultural events
  •  19 % Fairs and exhibitions
  • 13 % Social events
  • 16 % Carnival events
  •  4 % Other events

The numbers of events and visitors in the individual objects:
The Congress-Centrum Koelnmesse was the venue of 1,278 events (including 142 congress,
conference and social events during periods without trade fairs and 1,136 supporting events at
trade fairs) with a total of 214,000 visitors.
In the Gürzenich Köln, 191 events attracted 142,000 visitors.
In the Tanzbrunnen Köln, 413 events were attended by 522,000 guests.
In the Flora Köln, 197 events attracted 61,000 visitors.
In the other objects, there were 43 events which registered a total of 5,000 visitors.

The level of utilization of the KölnKongress objects in 2016 was 358 days (2014: 361 days).

The occupancy days of the individual objects:

  • Congress-Centrum Ost Koelnmesse: 241 days
  • Congress-Centrum Nord Koelnmesse: 216 days
  • Gürzenich Köln: 205 days
  • Tanzbrunnen Köln: 265 days
  • Flora Köln: 204 days
  • Bastei and ZooLocation: 42 days

Record result: with turnover of 13.5 million Euros (2015: 12.5 million Euros), KölnKongress has been able to record the best result in its company history for 2016 An enormous increase in comparison with the early years of the KölnKongress GmbH: in 1997 the company recorded a turnover of 2.06 million Euros. In the portfolio at that time, however, were "only" the Congress-Centrum Koelnmesse and the Gürzenich Cologne (just after its renovation and re-opening). KölnKongress benefits greatly from the many years of experience and the synergy effects of the eight locations: not only technical equipment and furnishings can be jointly used, but all the objects can take advantage of the know-how of the employees.

In order to offer the guests and event organizers the usual high-quality service in terms of security, numerous measures were conducted in close consultation with the organizers and the security services and the guests were made aware of them. "In spite of the changed security situation everywhere, it was possible to hold all the events booked in our objects. Not only did they run smoothly but also to the full satisfaction of visitors and organizers - among them were numerous major national and international events", commented Bernhard Conin.

Measures to increase the quality of the stay for visitors
The satisfaction of the organizers and visitors is the most important thing for KölnKongress - the usual high standard is therefore constantly improved. In the past year KölnKongress has already invested some 370,000 Euros aimed at increasing the quality of the stay for visitors and organizers both in the Gürzenich and the Tanzbrunnen.

Some examples from the Gürzenich catalogue of measures:
For better orientation in the building, an electronic visitor guidance system was installed. For an optimized sound quality, the PA system in the large Hall was partly renewed. In addition, charging stations for mobile phones and tablets were installed and non-contacting water taps installed. The largest conference room has a presentation flatscreen. A thermal curtain in the entrance area prevents drafts and ensures an optimal room climate.

Some examples from the catalogue of measures at the Tanzbrunnen:
At the Tanzbrunnen two large-format outdoor LED walls provide the viewers with information promptly. In the theatre, a completely new stage rigging has been installed, as well as a new screen and a new beamer. In the foyer, the walls have been redesigned to create a modern overall impression and backstage the artist changing rooms have been completely renovated and refurnished.

Further measures have already been planned for 2017.

Extract from the 2016 congress and event year

An extract from the event calendar of the Congress-Centrum Koelnmesse:
Annual Conference of the German Civil Servants Union (dbb), EINSTIEG Köln, Berufe LIVE Köln, annual general meetings of numerous companies, Sports Media Summit, European Taximesse 2016, German Sound Engineers Conference 2016, Graduate Congress and the VdS Fire Protection Conference as well as various medical congresses, among others, the World Pathologists' Congress.

An extract from the event calendar of the Gürzenich Köln:
7th Cologne Real Estate Fair, Cologne Fair for Further Education 2016, Forum Early Childhood, 56th Major Further Training Event of the North Rhine Westphalian Pharmacists Association, Future Congress of the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland, symphony concert - 50 years of the Junge Young Symphony Cologne, Kölner Edelsteintage,balls and social events as well as numerous anniversaries and Christmas celebrations and various medical congresses such as, for example, the Hodgkin Congress.

An extract from the event calendar of the Flora Köln:
In addition to company events, social and private events, The 70th anniversary celebration of the FDP with Hannelore Kraft and other high-ranking politicians, the Grimme Online Award, the anniversary conference "100 years of the VDDI" organized by the German Dental Association The 70th anniversary of the CDU NRW with Angela Merkel, the memorial ceremony on the death of Guido Westerwelle, as well as nine international congresses, anniversaries, birthdays and weddings.

An extract from the event calendar of the Tanzbrunnen Köln:
ZZ TOP, Silvermoon, Rea Garvey, Foreigner, Donovan, Art Garfunkel, Dieter Thomas Kuhn & Band, Köbes Underground and Bläck Fööss, Ludovico Einaudi and several musicals (for example, "Hair") in addition to numerous comedians performed here. Further events: the Cologne Lights and eleven events on the programme of lit.COLOGNE.

II. Outlook for the event year of 2017

An extract from the event calendar of the Congress-Centrum Koelnmesse:
Annual Conference of the German Civil Servants Union (dbb), EINSTIEG Köln, Berufe LIVE Köln, the Annual General Meetings of STRABAG AG, Deutz AG, INDUS Holding AG and Ströer SE & Co. KGaA, Sports Media Summit, Deutsche Tonmeistertagung 2017, Missionale, Bildungskongress 2017, the 4th PVH Congress, 23rd Trade Logistics Congress, Absolventenkongress and the VdS Fire Protection Days as well as various medical congresses

An extract from the events calendar of the Gürzenich Köln:
8th Cologne Real Estate Fair, Cologne Fair for the Future, 2017, Kölner Edelsteintage, 10th European Congress for Energy Efficient Building with Wood, Congress of Tax Advisors, 20th European Symposium on Organic Chemistry (an event organized by the Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker eV), the Kölner Debütantenball, musical events (Vienna Johann Strauss Concert Gala, the most beautiful opera choruses, concert of the Symphony Orchestra of the University of Cologne, DEUTZ Chorus Cologne), balls and social events, numerous jubilees and Christmas celebrations as well as various medical congresses

An extract from the event calendar of the Flora Cologne:
The Flora Cologne has already been booked for numerous company events as well as social and private events for 2017, among other things, with anniversaries, graduation balls, birthdays and weddings as well as musical events: HÖHNER – Akustik-Tour, concert of the Flora Symphony Orchestra, Flora concert of the Gürzenich Orchestra, Benefit concert of the German Paediatricians concert of Accordion Orchestra Köln-Deutz. Further events: the Grimme Online Award, the gala for the Ice Hockey World Cup 2017 and the "Cologne Handball Night" of the EHF. In addition, eight international congresses and four events on the programme of lit.COLOGNE will take place in the Flora.

An excerpt from the event calendar of the Tanzbrunnen Cologne:
Apart from Chris de Burgh and Dieter Thomas Kuhn & Band, the Wise Guys will be appearing with two farewell concerts (already sold-out), Alligatoah und Deine Freunde as well as Cologne cult bands such as Bläck Fööss, Köbes Underground, Räuber and Brings besides numerous popular comedians (for example: Helge Schneider, Mrs. Jahnke, Wilfried Schmickler, Jürgen B. Hausmann) and “Frau Höpker bittet zum Gesang”, will be appearing at the Tanzbrunnen. To open the season, Cat Ballou will be rocking on stage - 8,000 tickets have already been sold. Other events: the Amphi Festival, the Cologne Lights, the Fish Markets, the Linus Talent Show and 18 events as part of lit.COLOGNE.

III. Culinary delights in a historic setting:
As of 1st April, KölnKongress Gastronomie GmbH will provide the catering in the Gürzenich

On 1st April 2017, KölnKongress Gastronomie GmbH will be taking over the catering operations in the Gürzenich and will thus ensure a smooth transition - continuity and innovation.

It won't be long now: on 1st April 2017 KölnKongress Gastronomie GmbH, which was founded in September last year, will be taking over the catering operations in the Gürzenich. Shareholders of the GmbH are KölnKongress GmbH (51%) and Koelnmesse GmbH (49%). "The many years of experience in the event business have prompted us to take over the catering operations in the Gürzenich. Through the strategic partnership with the Koelnmesse, we will have a strong partner at our side, to handle the new field of business. Numerous synergies between event marketing and catering will have a positive impact for our customers and guests in the Gürzenich", according to Bernhard Conin, Managing Director of KölnKongress GmbH and KölnKongress Gastronomie GmbH, who sees himself as a "host for hosts".

The future catering concept is intended to follow the Gürzenich motto "Tradition meets modernity". It is based on regional and seasonal products - creativity, sustainability and trends form a symbiosis with old-established high quality. An extensive range of wines and other drinks round off the offer.

In future, you will find further information at www.koelnkongress-gastronomie.de.

IV. New ifo study commissioned:
The economic impact of the CologneKongress GmbH events

Congresses and events make a significant contribution to the economic success of a city and in Cologne – as one of the leading conference and event destinations in Germany – are on a significant scale.

The "economic impacts of the CologneKongress GmbH events on the City of Cologne, NRW and Germany" are examined at four-year intervals in a study by the Ifo Institute for Economic Research in Munich. This is currently being commissioned once again.

Among other things, the total expenditures of the participants, the induced total turnover (direct and indirect expenditure of the event visitors), the number of persons employed by the congresses and events of the KölnKongress GmbH and the amount of the tax revenues incurred, will be investigated.

V. Modern, user-friendly and compatible:
Relaunch of the KölnKongress homepage

KölnKongress will present its newly-designed homepage in spring 2017. Optical accents, comfortable handling and responsive web design will convince organizers and visitors.

VI. “Dank Augusta” (Thanks to Augusta), barrier-free in the future
Newly built ramp provides convenient access to the Flora Terrace

Thanks to an additional walkway at the rear of the Flora, the terrace restaurant “Dank Augusta” will be accessible on time from the park as well as from the car park without any barriers.

The work is in full swing: on time for the start of the season in the beer garden, the new stairway is planned to be ready, so that barrier-free access is possible not only to the Flora, but also to the terrace. In order to do this, a pathway of more than 100 metres has been newly laid and 2.5 metres of height difference between the park path and the terrace are overcome. The actual ramp is about 35 meters long and runs around the existing listed group of trees. The three bridge sections of the ramp are 1.80 meters wide and stand on firm foundations. In consultation with a tree expert they are constructed in such a way that the root system of the surrounding trees is optimally protected.

KölnKongress offers a full service - no matter whether at a shareholders' meeting, a company presentation, a scientific congress or a social event and the innovative public event - and provides it in exceptional locations, right in the heart of Cologne. KölnKongress, Cologne’s largest provider of event venues, provides the setting for an average of 2,000 events per year in a total of eight exceptional locations:

The Congress-Centrum Koelnmesse, a top-class event location with event facilities for all kinds of event. One of the most attractive and largest conference venues in North Rhine-Westphalia and with seating for 19,500 visitors capable of individually satisfying every customer’s wishes.

The city’s “Front Parlour” - the Gürzenich Köln, a splendid traditional building, in which the historic architecture is combined with the latest event technology to provide a refined event location and offers a fitting setting for stylish celebrations, congresses, balls, concerts and other social events.

The Flora Köln is the exclusive address for conferences, social events and concerts in Cologne. Whether a gala event with 650 participants, a party with up to 1,500 guests, congress event, Carnival session or wedding reception with family and good friends - the Flora Köln provides the ideal setting for any event.

The Tanzbrunnen Köln - an open-air stage with room for up to 12,500 visitors on the bank of the Rhine in Cologne-Deutz. Alongside it, the Rheinterrassen and the Theater am Tanzbrunnen offer a wide variety of event facilities.

Also in the grounds of the Tanzbrunnen, located directly on the Rhine, is Europe's most attractive city-beach, the km 689 Cologne Beach Club – including spectacular views of the Cathedral!

The Bastei has a great deal of history to offer. Prominently located overlooking the bend in the River Rhine, this former part of the city’s medieval fortifications is the now the venue of outstanding events.

Company anniversary in a jungle atmosphere? Fashion Show with the chameleons? In the ZooLocation, the Aquarium of Cologne Zoo, you can enjoy exotic and extravagant events.