Popkomm Numbers Plunge

Popkomm’s attendance this year was almost one-third down from 2010.

The annual conference, trade fair and showcase (Sept. 7-9) has steadily declined in recent years but the latest dip raises the question of how long the event can be sustained.

At press time is wasn’t possible to get comment from Messe Berlin, which organises Popkomm, but the official figures show the three-day gathering attracted 5,200 visitors – 2,300 down on the 7,500 who showed last year.

In 2010 the trade fair attracted 470 exhibitors and this year there were 400.

A decade ago, when the event was still held in Cologne, Popkomm was regularly pulling more than 15,000 visitors.

Moving to Berlin and bolting itself on to Berlin Music Week and Berlin Festival, which are both held at the old Tempelhof Airport, hasn’t improved Popkomm’s fortunes.

The conference is also facing stiff competition from Hamburg’s Reeperbahn Festival (Sept. 22-24), where visitor numbers are steadily on the increase.

Last year Reeperbahn attracted about 1,200 paying delegates and 350 media people and. Despite the economic climate, the organisers were quietly confident that this year would do even better.

Next year’s Popkomm has already been set for Sept. 5-7.