This year marks CapeRay’s second attendance at Medica, a business-to-business trade fair in the German city of Düsseldorf. Spread across 17 exhibitions halls, each the size of a football field, with more than 5,000 companies clamouring for attention, and over 100,000 potential customers, it is the place to be if you are in the business of medical devices. From 14 to 17 November we have been located in Hall 17, on Stand D82, our exhibit located under the umbrella of CBI (the Dutch acronym for “Centrum tot Bevordering van de Import uit ontwikkelingslanden”). CBI is an initiative of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs that has been designed to assist companies from developing countries to export their products to the European Union.
On Tuesday 13th we attended a workshop run by the CBI experts who provided us with guidance on what to expect at the trade fair and how to behave. We learned to recognize six types of visitor to our booth: the information seeker; the wanderer; the focused manager; the networker; the disinterested visitor; and the seminar attendee. We also learned how our behaviour could be associated with different animals. We should not behave like ostriches, with our heads buried in laptops or cell phones, or like peacocks, talking loudly to our fellow exhibitors, and certainly not like a tiger, growling at an unwanted visitor to our stand. Rather we should behave like a troop of chimpanzees, engaging our visitors in friendly conversation.
The centrepiece of our exhibit has been a large 27-inch Mac screen with all the X-ray images from our recent clinical trial loaded onto a Mac mini. Standing next to the screen is a life-size banner of the PantoScanner Soteria, enabling us to showcase the capabilities of our full-field digital mammography system. It has also provided a platform for us to describe how our dual-modality system, the PantoScanner Aceso, will function.
The trade fair is not only an opportunity for us to market our company and products, but also a great place to meet both current and future suppliers. One such company is Cephasonics, a Silicon Valley firm that has developed innovative semiconductor devices for ultrasound (their name was inspired by oceanic dolphins of the genus Cephalorhynchus).
Yesterday CapeRay and Cephasonics got together over a beer to share insights and experience on their respective companies. It was definitely a case of the chimpanzees meeting the dolphins!