Austech 2019 got underway on 14 May at the Melbourne Convention & Exhibition Centre, and the first day drew a strong turnout in terms of visitors.

Co-located with National Manufacturing Week (NMW), Austech is Australia’s premier advanced manufacturing and machine tool exhibition. Official figures for the first day of the event show that Austech and NMW attracted a combined total of 2,550 visitors – a very high attendance for first day. That strong turnout was in evidence on the expo floor, with many exhibitors reporting brisk traffic on their stands, leading to high numbers of promising leads and potential sales.

“We’re absolutely thrilled with the number of visitors we got today,” said Kim Banks, AMTIL’s Events Manager and Austech organiser. “It’s been one of our biggest ever first days, and an increase of around 50% on the same day at Austech 2017.”

Austech 2019 had already been breaking records well before its doors opened. With more than 150 organisations exhibiting, and many of them taking significantly larger stands than in previous years, the exhibition floor space covers more than 6,000sqm – a footprint unprecedented in Austech’s twenty-year history. Austech 2019 was also the fastest to sell out in terms of exhibition space for more than a decade.

Events got underway at 10.00am at the Industry 4.0 Theatre, in the middle of the exhibition floor, with a speech from Martin Pakula, the Victorian State Minister for Jobs, Innovation & Trade, to officially open the show. This was followed by a presentation by Dr Alan Finkel AO, Australia’s Chief Scientist, to kick off a wide-ranging speaker program that will be running throughout Austech/NMW.

This year’s show also offers a comprehensive spectrum of technologies vital to any modern manufacturing business, with the Air Technology Pavilion spotlighting the cutting edge in compressor systems and associated air technologies, and the Digitalisation Pavilion demonstrating the latest innovations in connected manufacturing. The Additive Manufacturing Pavilion spotlights the advances in 3D printing, complemented by the Unlimit3D conference – taking place in tandem with the exhibition. Finally, the Manufacturers Pavilion provides a platform for some of Australia’s finest precision engineering and advanced manufacturing businesses.

Having broken records on its first day, expectations are now high for the remainder of Austech, which will continue till Friday 17 May.

“The first day has normally been relatively quiet compared with the later stages of previous Austechs,” Banks added. “So we’re very optimistic after today. It’s great news for our exhibitors and it’s great news for the industry.”