I: Firstly, tell us about yourself. Who is Federico Addimando and where did the idea of Fairingo come from?
F.A .: My first approach to China starts about eight years ago, when I decided to go to Qingdao for a study trip, an experience that has totally changed my way of seeing the world and above all that has allowed me to reach new job prospects. At that time I was already working with some Asian companies, specifically Japanese and Chinese, but I never had the opportunity to go to Asia for work. After that trip, I met my current chinese wife, at university, and thanks to her I realized that China would be able to give me everything I needed.
Here I decided to found my consulting company in Shanghai, Addimando Consulting Group, with which I help Western companies to enter the Chinese market; OIR – Observatory on International Relations, a webzine that deals with providing information on socio-economic changes at an international level, totally free and other projects.
Already working in the trade fair sector, I asked myself what needs really should be taken into consideration in order to allow customers and operators in the sector to enjoy a better experience at the fair, and from that moment on I had a “revelation”: Fairingo (smiles).
- Fairingo is certainly an innovative startup, but what makes it truly unique?
F.A .: Fairingo is a young project, which starts from a simple premise: to guarantee operators in the trade fair sector, from translators / interpreters to stand fitters, up to visitors, of course, to be able to enjoy a platform capable of providing global services in this sector, covering a range of services so as to make the experience at the fair unique of its kind.
Generally, the visitor tends to organize his visit based on third party services, agencies etc. Fairingo allows in total autonomy to choose the fair that most interests the visitor, contact any translator / interpreter available for that date, possibly contact a stand construction company and of course, book hotels and flights thanks to our partnership with booking.com.
This is what makes Fairingo one of a kind. Its ability to distinguish itself from other sites and agencies, its ability to guarantee a fast and above all easy service, even for older users, who generally rely on other, much more expensive, services.
I: It is undoubtedly an innovative and extremely elaborate platform. Obviously this platform is also dedicated to translators / interpreters and companies in the sector. Can you describe the service better?
F.A .: Certainly. The platform is very simple; on the one hand, the visitor through four search engines can search for all the information and personnel he needs during his visit to the fair, selecting the date, the place of interest and the sector. Automatically he will be offered data and contacts of trade fairs, translators and companies available for his needs. On the other hand, the translator / interpreter and companies in the sector have the possibility of subscribing to a monthly or annual subscription, so that they can enter our database and be able to take advantage of all the visibility in order to conclude their business in peace and without complications. Fairingo does not earn anything on the transactions that are made between visitor / customer, but only from the subscription which, if I may say so, is really cheap and advantageous (smiles).
I: What do you think will happen in the future? The pandemic has hit the trade show industry hard, how will Fairingo respond?
F.A.: The pandemic has given a severe blow to trade fairs all over the world, although I must say that in recent months, fairs have been responding very well, managing to restore all services and define new communication and interactive models with visitors. Surely, this led to a “change” of attitude towards the fair itself. The new trends in the trade fair sector are certainly also the result of the pandemic, just think of live shows, live shows where products are offered directly to the consumer or shows that use virtual reality, bringing the visitor directly inside the stand.
I: Aren’t you afraid of this change and how technology will take over trade fairs?
F.A .: Technology is something that must be used in the right way. If it can bring about a transformation of the concept of the fair, exactly as Fairingo is doing, then it is something great. However, I believe that the concept of “fair” and “exhibition” will hardly be supplanted by virtual events or live shows. The visitor at the fair wants to touch the product, he needs to speak in person with the owner and the staff of a company, it is unlikely that he will make large-scale orders virtually.
I repeat, to avoid misunderstandings, technology is something incredible and that can really improve our lives, but there are sectors, such as in the trade fair, in which the “face to face” human relationship is something irreplaceable.