3 / 6 March 2026

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Press Release


+++ Leading global trade fair impresses 38,000 trade visitors from 133 countries +++ Over 90 percent share of foreign exhibitors +++ Dynamic atmosphere in the exhibition halls +++ Industry demonstrates its innovative power +++ New schedule for 2026 confirmed

The EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair, which was staged in Cologne from 3 to 6 March 2024, once again proved to be the place-to-be as well as the central business and communication platform for the global hardware industry. After the special edition in the autumn of 2022, the leading global trade fair returned to its regular venue date in March this year. More than 3,200 exhibitors from 54 countries presented the current trends and new products in the tools and accessories, industrial supply, fixing and fastening technology, building supplies and home improvement sections. In spite of diverse public transport strikes, 38,000 trade visitors from 133 countries made their way to Cologne. The next edition of the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair Cologne is scheduled to take place from 3 to 6 March 2026.

After four successful trade fair days, the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair closed its doors on Wednesday, 6 March 2024. After making a strong appearance, the trade fair impressively confirmed its position as the number one event of the hardware industry. The event particularly displayed further growth with regards to its internationality: 92 percent of the exhibiting companies and over 70 percent of the trade visitors came from abroad. The high quality of the visitors and the first-class supporting and event programme, which offered plenty of opportunity for a professional exchange, were equally impressive. The personal encounters at the exhibition stands led to the development and expansion of business partnerships and to successful business transactions.

“We are highly satisfied with the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair 2024. Our supporting programme went down very well and all of the exhibiting companies praised the excellent quality of the visitors,” stated Oliver Frese, Chief Operating Officer of Koelnmesse GmbH. “The trade fair underpinned its relevance as the key meeting point for industry trends and product innovations not least with formats like the popular EISENaward. The positive response and the return of many companies confirm that the March date fits in perfectly with the innovation cycle of the industry,” Frese continued.

Thomas Dammann, Chief Executive Director of the Central Association of the Hardware Trade e.V. (ZHH), emphasised the significance of the trade fair for the specialised trade: “In times of scarce resources and the current challenges, the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair 2024 gave the specialised trade and B2B sector a very comprehensive overview of the European and international market for the tools and hardware industry. For the specialised trade it primarily served as a platform for new products, personal contacts and the consolidation of partnerships without failing to keep an eye on the trends and new suppliers. As the most important networking platform of the hardware industry, the trade fair convinced once again and has the potential to grow even further in terms of the diversity of its exhibitors – not only at international, but also at European level.”

The EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair is the global display window of the tool industry. But it is not only a display window for high-quality products, the most innovative minds and creative ideas also come together here to shape the future of our industry,” Stefan Horst, Chief Operating Officer of the German Tool Manufacturers Association, commented.

Sustainability, multifunctionality and digitalisation are on trend
The EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair served as an important trend barometer for the hardware industry in 2024 again. As such, there was an increased focus on among others the theme sustainability. Manufacturers are increasingly relying on renewable energies for their production and optimising their supply chains as well as paying attention to the recycling of packaging and old tools. Beyond this a trend towards multifunctional tools is recognisable. Current new products such as multifunctional pliers, rotating multi-purpose ladders or mini chain saws are suitable for a host of different applications. The theme digitalisation was also present in the exhibition halls – from the digital features of spirit levels and protractors to “intelligent” compressors with a WiFi connection, through to the smart door cylinder.

EISENaward 2024 selects three winners
Trends and innovations were also the focus of the EISENaward 2024 powered by ZHH. The coveted prize was presented at the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair for the seventh time already, once again in cooperation with the ZHH. A star-studded jury selected this year’s three prize winners from among the more than 50 products submitted and the winners were presented with their awards during the festive award ceremony. All ten nominated products were showcased to the trade audience in a special area.

DIY Boulevard: Innovations by the metre
In collaboration with the German Association of Home & Garden Manufacturers e.V. (HHG), the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair presented the very popular DIY Boulevard again this year. With 58 participating companies and measuring 255 metres in length, the presentation area was fully booked long before the start of the event. The manufacturers had the opportunity to present their products on-site in a POS-like environment. In this way, the trade audience experienced an authentic presentation of goods.

EISENforum with a diversified programme
As the central event stage of the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair, the EISENforum once again served as a platform for an industry-relevant exchange of knowledge. Inspiring lectures alternated with exciting panel discussions and distinctions. The presentation programme on the second day of the fair that was curated by the digital expert, Michael Atug, held plenty of renowned speakers in store. The BME Buyers Day organised by the German Association of Materials Management, Purchasing and Logistics (BME) on the third day of the fair provided valuable insights into the latest developments and strategic approaches of the procurement sector.

New schedule for 2026
In 2026 the EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair Cologne will be held from 3 to 6 March, at the fair grounds of Koelnmesse again. The new exhibition dates are accompanied by a new schedule: Instead of running as previously from Sunday to Wednesday, in future the leading global trade fair will be staged from Tuesday until Friday. The EISENWARENMESSE – International Hardware Fair is thus accommodating the wishes of the industry for a stronger focus on the business days.

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