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Linde Material Handling has announced that it will exhibit at IMHX 2013. The German forklift giant, which last participated in the UK's biggest intralogistics event in 2007, has ordered a large stand in Hall 20.

Linde's decision to sign up for IMHX – which takes place from 19-22 March 2013 at the NEC in Birmingham – has been hailed as great news for existing exhibitors, for those companies wanting to get on board and, of course, for visitors to the show. Said Andrew Daly, Linde's Director of Sales and Marketing, "Linde Material Handling is pleased to confirm it will be exhibiting at IMHX 2013. Closer engagement with our customers, providing them with efficiencies, cost reduction and greater flexibility have been a key focus for us at Linde and IMHX gives us the ideal platform to demonstrate these values and the full breath of our capabilities to both our customers and prospects."

Rob Fisher, IMHX Event Director for the show's co-organiser, Informa Exhibitions, commented, "We're delighted that Linde will be part of our event and thank them for their support. We have once again attracted the big names. As IMHX has grown over the years, it has moved from a materials handling show to one that embraces all aspects of the logistics industry related to the warehouse. Forklift trucks remain at the heart of this, and Linde's presence at IMHX 2013 will help showcase the excellence demonstrated across our industry's major players."

Confirmation of Linde's participation follows the news last month that the footprint of IMHX has been increased by an impressive 20% to meet continued demand for exhibitor space. With the show still nine months away, the amount of floor space reserved is already approaching that booked at the 2010 event. "Exhibitor feedback from 2010 shows that IMHX delivers excellent leads and prospects," said Rob Fisher. "As a result, we expect IMHX 2013 to be a sell-out, in spite of its expanded size and the fact that economic conditions remain challenging."

Market optimism
The economic climate is not denting the confidence of the British Industrial Truck Association (BITA) – the other co-organiser of IMHX – whose members met on 11 May for their AGM. A positive economic forecast from the latest research carried out for BITA by Oxford Economics, combined with the success of the association's new apprenticeship scheme – the BITA Academy – meant that BITA members demonstrated an optimistic outlook.

Presenting the research findings on behalf of Oxford Economics, Scott Livermore said, "Although output in 2011 has been weaker than expected and the statistics indicate that manufacturing activity is expected to remain sluggish this year, evidence provided by the BITA members themselves provides room for cautious optimism for the sector." He continued, "Order books and actual sales in the sector appear to be in better shape than the macroeconomic position would suggest. Although manufacturing felt the brunt of the weaker-than-expected second half of 2011, with growth averaging just 0.5% compared to an expected 2% last September, survey data has picked up over the last six months. This has been helped by a rebound in new orders, both total and export orders."

Design 4 Safety competition returns
Following a successful début at IMHX 2010, the Design 4 Safety Awards will return at IMHX 2013, with three new categories providing fresh opportunities to win. Celebrating safety design innovations by all manufacturers in the materials handling industry, the Design 4 Safety Awards recognise the importance of product design in improving safety throughout the UK materials handling industry. With entries welcomed from September 2012, IMHX exhibitors are being invited to consider now which products or initiatives that they might like to submit. There are seven award categories this time: industrial vehicles & ancillary products; automation; goods-in/goods-out; racking & storage; technology; safety practices; and apprentices – a special category in which industry apprentices can submit their ideas for how existing products and procedures could be improved.

The competition's ultimate winners will demonstrate the strongest evidence of a measurable contribution to the level of safety awareness or rate of incident reduction achieved by the design feature, as judged by an independent panel of industry and safety experts in a two-stage process. Three entries from each category will be shortlisted in early 2013; winners in each category will be awarded in the Design 4 Safety zone at IMHX 2013 and in the show catalogue; and then visitors to IMHX will be invited to vote for an overall ‘People's Choice' award to be announced at the event. All entries must be made via the IMHX website – www.imhx.biz – from September 2012 and before the closing date of 11 January 2013.


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