Record-breaking 2024: Salone del Mobile.Milano closed with even greater success

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Salone del Mobile.Milano has once again confirmed its position as a pivotal point for the design industry, the economy, sustainable innovation, and the future of home living...

The famous furniture fair, held annually in Milan, welcomed its visitors this time with 1,950 exhibitors from 35 different countries, an extraordinary cultural program, and a challenge named "Evolution"...

With 17.1% more visitors than in 2023, Salone del Mobile.Milano 2024 had a record number of attendees, totaling 361,417 (100,000 more than in 2022). Remarkable results were achieved for professional visits, which increased by 26.8%, with 65.8% of them from abroad. These figures reaffirm the event’s key role in the internationalization of companies within the industry, the value of networking, and the catalytic power of an event that has surpassed the dimensions of the fair, driven by a second phase of redesigning the layout and visitor paths in some of the fair pavilions, with a special focus on EuroCucina / FTK, Technology for the Kitchen, and the International Bathroom Exhibition, two areas strongly dedicated to experimenting in the field of new aesthetics and functions in highly technical projects increasingly directed towards a sustainable approach.

The top 15 market geographies saw a significant return of China, followed by Germany, Spain, Brazil, France, the United States, Poland, Russia, Switzerland, Turkey, India, the United Kingdom, South Korea, Japan, and Austria. This atlas has opened up new business opportunities, also thanks to numerous delegations from the United States, India, United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, France, and Saudi Arabia.

There was more media presence than last year: 5,552 accredited journalists and communication professionals for a total of 6,778 admissions (50.4% from abroad), were attracted by an event that successfully interpreted and revealed new boundaries of design to the world.

Public interest during the weekend (days when the fair was also open to the public) was solidified with 32,567 enthusiasts attending, evidencing the fact that an exceptionally high-quality offering, rounded off with an International Cultural Program, serves as a powerful magnet for industry professionals and an indispensable opportunity for design enthusiasts visiting the fair to explore new proposals and stimulate thought.

There was also an increase in the number of Italian and foreign students, totaling 13,556, including 8,368 Italians (+25.5%), marking an average growth rate of 18.8%, young people who, on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the continuous "factory" of new talent, SaloneSatellite, accepted the invitation to discover the potential of a sector that generates meaning and beauty, through a blend of multidisciplinary skills, in line with the blue and green transition processes that anticipate the future of new generations.

Finally, the use of the multichannel platform of Salone del Mobile.Milano by the digital community exceeded expectations, with more than 1 million interactions (+50% compared to 2023) and an engagement rate of 60%, and 90 million impressions (+15% compared to 2023). The app achieved outstanding results in terms of service usage, with an increase in the use of the connection system by over 39% and navigation of the interactive map, with more than 450,000 searches.

Maria Porro - president of Salone del Mobile.Milano © Guido Stazzoni

Maria Porro, president of Salone del Mobile.Milano, stated: “The sixty-second edition of Salone del Mobile.Milano exceeded all expectations: it was a record edition. We saw extraordinary results, thanks to the trust of an ecosystem that, again, recognized the international leadership of the event. With an incredible 361,417 attendees, Salone del Mobile.Milano once again confirmed its position as an unparalleled bridge for dialogue with new market geographies, as an intercontinental city open to innovation, where competition stimulates the competitiveness of a key sector for the country's economy and much more than that, presenting itself as a great 'factory' of meaning and enduring values, products and jobs, and tangible and intangible culture. During the process of redesigning formats and experiences, we focused both on the industrial and production side and on visitors, in an attempt to stimulate both sides with an extraordinary Cultural Program capable of creating new connections between the powerful roots of design culture and the definition of new future visions. The celebration of our SaloneSatellite, which for 25 years has been discovering and promoting new young talents, confirms this. The success of this edition can also be attributed to the success of the Kitchen and Bathroom Biennale, in which research and development are a synthesis not only of innovative processes but also of the ability of both sectors to align the habits and desires of everyday life. We have already started plans for 2025, aware that Salone del Mobile.Milano is an opportunity for everyone, for the wood equipment supply chain, for Milan, and for the entire Made in Italy system. It is important that we continue to work together, involving large or small companies and institutions, keeping in mind the strong intuition that has driven us for 62 editions: creation and togetherness. I thank everyone who made this challenge not only possible but concrete, inclusive, brilliant. Like the blue velvet of David Lynch's thinking rooms, Salone del Mobile.Milano is a homage to generative thought that moves the world.”

Claudio Feltrin - president of Federlegno Arredo © Federlegno Arredo

Claudio Feltrin, president of Federlegno Arredo, said: “This was indeed an extraordinary edition, which fully justified the exceptional work that the exhibitors put in over the past year. Again, entrepreneurs successfully faced the challenge, and after 62 years, we can confidently say that we are the undisputed leaders, able to attract design from all over the world to the pavilions of Rho Fiera Milano, confirming Salone del Mobile.Milano as the most important international fair in the industry. Our secret? Genius, vision, determination, and that unparalleled 'industrial craftsmanship' value that only our products can express. These companies and the wood furniture supply chain are the economic engine of this intelligent path to success, which we are proud of, and it is our duty to continue to value, as an expression of the great system that is Italian design. We have worked, and will continue to do so, knowing that Salone del Mobile.Milano is primarily a business fair that allows even the smallest companies to present themselves to a huge and specialized audience that they would otherwise find difficult to reach individually.”

Significant recognition of the international leadership position of Salone del Mobile.Milano and the entire industry also comes from the presence of high governmental and institutional figures, including the Minister for Business and Made in Italy, Adolfo Urso, who chose Milan and Salone del Mobile.Milano to celebrate the first National Day of Made in Italy. Support from ITA - the Italian Trade Agency was invaluable, with invitations for 220 buyers and 240 journalists from 64 different countries, providing them with an opportunity to meet with companies exhibiting their products on a polished stage. Also key was the close collaboration with Rho Fiera Milano, contributing to the realization of the event.

Keyword: Evolution. The record numbers seen in 2024 testify to the achievements of a year's work that saw how Salone del Mobile.Milano once again dedicated itself to reworking exhibition settings and visitor paths, following the success of Euroluce 2023, with the introduction of new work and rest areas created in collaboration with Lombardini22 and using neuroscience inputs. The keyword was Evolution, the basic text of an innovative communication campaign that accompanied the international Road Show of Salone del Mobile.Milano, which covered 16 major cities, from the Far East to India and South Africa, across Europe and North America. The tour created new networks of relationships, enhanced by the digital platform, communicating content and visions to an expanded community, thanks to many dedicated insights and special guests who joined Salone del Mobile.Milano as it traveled the world for shared reflection on the transformative power of design practices. Among them were Patrick Jouin, Konstantin Grcic, Luca Nichetto, and Felicia Arvid, Barber Osgerby, Adam D. Tihany, Stephen Burks, Michelle De Lucchi, Lombardini22, Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM).

In line with its evolutionary trajectory, the physical and digital dimensions of the event's promotion strategy included all its communication resources, starting with the multichannel platform of Salone del Mobile.Milano, a constant point of connection with the international design community, thanks to ongoing narration before and during the event, focused on a combination of inclusion, information, and services to optimize visitor experience and promote exhibitors, proposals, installations, and events. The daily narrative was enriched by collaboration with Italian and international creators, including Francesca Crescentini, Michela Gardenia, Nicola Lamberti, and Marta Sierra, a reference point for lifestyle in the world of social media, with more than 1.5 million followers.

Again, in line with its experimentation trajectory, Salone del Mobile.Milano established new direct and indirect communication landmarks, such as the Design Kiosk, designed in collaboration with Interbrand and realized according to the design of DWA Design Studio, set up on Piazza della Scala before and during the fair, storing a selection of publications and hosting high-quality meetings with personalities such as Stefano Boeri, President of Triennale Milano, Cino Zucchi, Luca Nichetto, and the collective Parasite 2.0, among others. 2024 also marked the launch of a major research project entrusted to photographer and filmmaker Gianluca Vassallo, Comunità Continua, a photographic study of the immense design community that gathers in Milan during Salone del Mobile.Milano week. The portfolio of faces that documents the strong links between the event and the region, in which Salone del Mobile.Milano represents a powerful driver of international appeal and the synthesis of Milan – Design System that has created the historical roots of the event that is unique in the world, is a key theme for the project entrusted to Politecnico di Milano for the economic analysis of the impact of the event on the city.

New initiatives also included the Salone Library, a registry of more than 150 books highlighted by speakers at the 2024 fair edition and others, aimed at sharing multidisciplinary reflections on the future, presented in the Arena space designed by Formafantasma. This initiative will continue with the aim of building a large, shared library of contemporary thought. Under the same philosophy stands the mobile bookstore Corraini, which brought a selection of more than 100 international publishers to Salone.

Cultural Program

The new, widespread Cultural Program, coordinated by Annalisa Rosso, editorial director and advisor for cultural events, also had great success with the audience. At the 2024 edition, three major installations were highlighted. The first, "Interiors by David Lynch. A Thinking Room," designed by David Lynch himself, the well-known director of films dealing with the subconscious, was a categorically blue oasis for renewal: "A place that enables thinking," according to the words of Antonio Monde, curator of the project that took the form of a precious 'container', designed by Lombardini22, thanks to workshops at Piccolo Teatro di Milano. The second, "Under the Surface" – signed by Accurat, Design Group Italy, and Emiliano Ponzi – used a submerged island in the heart of the International Bathroom Exhibition to highlight the industry's commitment to finding new solutions for protecting the planet's most precious resource. The third, titled "All You Have Ever Wanted to Know About Food Design in Six Performances," shared multiple reflections on food as a design object in an experimental key, with 6 days of performances and presentations by 6 independent international magazines.

Conversations at "Drafting Futures. Conversations about Next Perspectives" in the Arena, renovated by Formafantasma, were stimulating and forward-looking, including a series of personalities such as Pritzker Prize winner Francis Kere, John Pawson, Deyan Sudjic, Jeanne Gang, Johanna Agerman Ross, and Hans Ulrich Obrist, who closed the program in conversation with Maria Porro, president of Salone del Mobile.Milano.

There was also great interest in the series of roundtables held in the Arena, with open discussions between authoritative voices on key issues such as the relationship between sailing and design – in collaboration with Salone Nautico Internazionale di Genova – the potential and risks of artificial intelligence and the latest developments in the hospitality industry, sectoral macro-trends with Intesa Sanpaolo, and a sensory journey in the company of Aesop.

25 years of SaloneSatellite

This year, SaloneSatellite again focused on the creativity of more than 600 young designers, marking a special anniversary with lectures, roundtables, live (specialist) table tennis matches, and a major exhibition at Triennale Milano, open to the public until April 28: Universo Satellite. 25 years of SaloneSatellite, curated by Beppe Finesi with an exhibition design signed by Riccardo Belo Dias. The Wunderkammer was a space where a selection of projects presented at previous design exhibitions for designers under 35 years old was accompanied by a continuous diary documenting the evolution of the magnificent 'invention' of Marva Griffin year after year. A polygon for reflection, relationships, and projects that enabled more than 14,000 young talents to exhibit alongside brands that have written the story of design, reaffirming the value of the keyword for the 62nd edition of Salone del Mobile.Milano. Evolution.

The 63rd edition of Salone del Mobile.Milano will be held from April 8 to April 13, 2025.

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