Inaugural digital event LIGNA.Innovation Network a success

LIGNA.Innovation Network (LIGNA.IN) made a convincing debut from 27-29 Sep 2021. The new digital event for the international woodworking and processing industry demonstrated the importance of such a format in these challenging times. 120 exhibiting companies and more than 80 renowned speakers from industry, politics and research have set new impulses and shown perspectives for the industry. More than 5,000 registered participants learned about innovations and trends in the industry.

“We are delighted that the digital format of Expo, Conference and Networking has met with such a broad response, and that many well-known companies, experts and industry representatives have exchanged their ideas in the LIGNA.IN,” said Dr. Jochen Köckler, CEO of Deutsche Messe AG, Hannover. “The event highlighted opportunities for the industry and encouraged dialogue around the three focus topics of Green Material Processing, Woodworking Transformation and Prefab Building Processes. This has proven that the industry is ready to break new ground where conditions are changing.”

“The innovations presented here by the companies, as well as the topics discussed in the interactive conference programme, have made it clear how important exchange continues to be in order to meet the current challenges in business and society,” said Dr. Bernhard Dirr, managing director of the VDMA Woodworking Machinery Association. “Even if we missed the personal contact that we have at a trade fair, LIGNA.IN has clearly shown how informative and inspiring digital events can be.”

120 national and international companies showed comprehensive product overviews and best-case applications, and provided information on concrete solutions via livestream and video chats.

Raphaël Prati, chief marketing & communications officer of Biesse Group, Italy, underlined the importance of the digital format: “It is important to spread the innovations to our customers so that they can improve their own business. LIGNA.IN has been a great opportunity for us as it gives us the possibility to reach our audience in a different way, spreading our news and presenting our solutions to a wide audience linked to LIGNA.”

Robert Falch, managing partner of MINDA Industrieanlagen, added: “An event like LIGNA.IN is important in times like these. We can’t meet customers in person at the moment, so at least we have the opportunity to present ourselves and to communicate. Our expectations have been fully met. We can imagine that LIGNA.IN will provide a good impulse for future LIGNA events, so that we will then have genuine hybrid events. I look forward to when we can meet again in person at the next LIGNA in 2023. But it will also be important to deliver parallel accompanying digital formats.”

In order to promote dialogue for a future-oriented bioeconomy, the Wood Industry Summit was launched as a digital event for the first time. The online conference brought together more than 30 international experts from industry and politics who examined the wood-based bioeconomy from a variety of perspectives.

“Sustainability can only be practicably realised with bioeconomy. This requires a reliable supply of raw materials by the forestry industry,” explained Alexander Kaulen, head of Wood Logistics and Data Management department of Kuratorium für Waldarbeit und Forstwirtschaft (KWF). “I received a lot of information about the bioeconomy after wood supply in the processing industry via the Wood Industry Summit. I think the professional connection of the industries is a great achievement of the congress.”

At the LIGNA.Forum digital, renowned speakers presented ideas and visions on the subject of Woodworking Transformation by means of digitisation and networking. Here, the current and future developments in digitalisation were highlighted and their opportunities for the industry – from craft businesses to industrial groups – discussed. 

In the focus topic “Prefab Building Processes”, the use of wood as a building material and the respective steps in the planning, prefabrication and assembly of timber structures were debated. Wood craft was not neglected either. At “Spotlight Handwerk”, experts gave impulses and suggestions on various topics such as asbestos and occupational health and safety, digital measurement or digitalisation in training.

In addition, Holzbau Deutschland presented the German Timber Construction Award 2021. Award-winning projects include the new construction of the Bauhofstraße Hotel in Ludwigsburg, the reconstruction of the St Martha Church in Nürnberg, the extension of the Metropolitan School in Berlin and the concept for the Ecological Model Settlement in Prinz-Eugen-Park in München, the largest contiguous timber construction settlement in Germany.

Under the motto “Designing your own surface”, experts and users highlighted current trends for the design of high-quality and individual surfaces and reported on their experiences at the second conference of the Digital Printing Association (DIPA) Symposium.

The content of the digital event LIGNA.IN can be accessed on-demand by all registered participants from October until the end of 2021. The next LIGNA will be held from 15-19 May 2023. The first Rosenheim LIGNA.Conference will be held from 1-2 Jun 2022. This will be organised by Deutsche Messe together with the TH Rosenheim, the educational institution for highly qualified young professionals in the field of wood technology.