Company History in Brief

The history of Expocentre goes hand in hand with the development of the trade show business in our country

Expocentre: Traditions of the Exhibition Business

For over 60 years Expocentre has been an unrivalled leader in organizing and staging international trade shows in Russia and abroad, many of which have become landmarks of the history of the global exhibition business. They still retain their prominent position in the calendar of the world’s major trade and consumer shows.

In the era of the Soviet Union all international exhibitions were held solely by Expocentre. It was the only company in the USSR empowered to run international and foreign exhibitions throughout the Soviet Union, as well as the Soviet shows in other countries. Since 1940s the Soviet exhibitions abroad and foreign exhibitions in the USSR were first organized by the Exhibitions Department, then the Agency for Exhibitions with two subdivisions: the Department for Soviet Exhibitions Abroad and the Department of Foreign Exhibitions in the Soviet Union, and then by the Agency for International and Foreign Exhibitions in the USSR under the USSR Chamber of Commerce (later turned into the USSR Chamber of Commerce and Industry) - unique structures in the Soviet Union to which Expocentre is an immediate successor.

The exhibition of US industrial products, or, as it was then called, the American National Exhibition of 1959, national exhibitions of Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Czechoslovakia and other countries, the first ever Soviet trade shows Stroidormash and Khimia followed by no less important and major trade shows such as Sviaz, Lesdrevmash, Elektro, Neftegaz, Inlegmash and others. They became extraordinary events for hundreds of thousands of Soviet people giving them an opportunity to see and, even, touch the realities of the life in other countries. And for specialists they unveiled a whole new world of achievements in research and technology. There is no reckoning how many discoveries and inventions has come to life thanks to Expocentre’s international exhibitions where Soviet and foreign researchers and specialists could meet and communicate.

Russia’s prominent role in the global exhibition business should also be credited to Expocentre. In 1975 Expocentre became a member of the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry (UFI) - the only member representing the USSR within this most reputable industry association. And for two decades the company acted as an Ambassador, so to speak, for the Russian exhibition industry in the world. It was Expocentre that for years staged and managed Soviet and Russian displays at World Expositions, starting from the Expo’67 in Montreal when the EXPO abbreviation was officially introduced.

Another key field of Expocentre’s activity has, for decades, been the setting up of Russian national pavilions at foreign exhibitions in other countries. Were they Soviet or, later, Russian exhibitions in Hungary, Egypt, Germany, Greece, South Korea, UAE, Panama, Poland, Syria, Turkey, France, Croatia, the Czech Republic and other countries, or Russian national pavilions at major international specialized exhibitions and trade fairs including the Paris Furniture Salon and international trade shows in Dubai (UAE), Thessalonica (Greece) and Izmir (Turkey), the International Information Technology Fair in Sao Paulo (Brazil), the World Forum for Medicine in Dusseldorf (Germany), or the International Engineering Fair in Brno (the Czech Republic) it was, again, Expocentre that ensured a most impressive presentation of Russia and its economy, thus helping to enhance the image of the country in the world.

To celebrate Expocentre’s 55th anniversary, the album book was published in 2014. The book is devoted to the history of Expocentre i.e. the history of the international trade shows in our country.