ISH North America show organizer Messe Frankfurt held a press conference to talk about the upcoming ISH Frankfurt, which will open in Germany March 6-10 of next year. Iris Jeglitza-Moshage, Messe Frankfurt vice president of technical fairs, spoke about the show, which is held at the world's third-largest fairgrounds. ISH Frankfurt will encompass most of the grounds. At the 2005 show there were roughly 2, 350 exhibitors from 57 countries, and nearly 200,000 visitors from 114 countries (about 80,000 from the trades).

Thirteen exhibitors from the United States were on hand in 2005 (three Canadian companies), down from the 18 in 2003. Almost 2,000 visitors from North America also were there; about 1,500 in 2003.

ISH Frankfurt has three areas of interest: energy and building technology; air-conditioning and ventilation under the Aircontec brand (expanded to include fire protection (Fireprotec) and industrial cooling (IKK)); and The Bathroom Experience, which is more consumer- and designer-oriented.

New in 2007 will be renewable energies, which will show that renewables combined with modern technology can result in increased energy efficiency and lower energy costs. Messe Frankfurt has found that manufacturers of these technologies are “highly interested” in reaching plumbing installers and incorporating these technologies in today's world.

Jeglitza-Moshage explained that in Germany and most of Europe, there is very little new construction going on - Europe is already “built up.” The primary need is to modernize and retrofit housing and commercial buildings, and this is what ISH Frankfurt focuses on.

She also unveiled a new program for European manufacturers - Messe Frankfurt Against Copying - to inform them about their rights regarding counterfeit products. Many European countries do not have copyright laws, so product copying is a big problem.

Also speaking was Andreas Lücke, managing director of BDH, the Federal Industrial Association of Germany for House, Energy and Environmental Technology. He discussed some of the reasons behind the renewable energies section of ISH Frankfurt, and some of the technologies being used in Europe.

Lücke said that for the last 50 years, Europe has had a very high cost of heating oil and gas, about four times as high as in the United States. And domestic heating accounts for most of the energy usage. So better, more efficient technologies had to be designed. When you add renewable energies, such as solar power, geothermal systems and biofuels, the efficiencies go even higher, he noted.