Strong attendance despite international retail consolidation underlined the event’s status as the world’s leading sourcing event for the Hardware and DYI industries. Cologne also saw strong numbers from the U.S. and Canada. Ninety-three exhibitors and close to 500 attendees from North America made the trip across the Atlantic this year. Almost 70 percent of the North American exhibitors selected to exhibit in U.S. or Canadian group exhibits offered by the American Hardware Manufacturers Association, the DYI Council and Koelnmesse Inc., the North American Chicago-based arm of the organizer.
Some of the North American attendees took advantage of the “International Buying Days” offered by the U.S. based “Presidents Council.” This organization lined up meetings for key management of major retailers, distributors and suppliers on conference rooms at the fairgrounds. Meetings started already the day before show opening and continued during all four show days.
Said Steve Powell, Vice President of the Presidents Council: “The Buying Days in Cologne were a complete success. We had six buyers from Lowes Global Sourcing, one buyer each from ACE International, OBI’s Head of International Sourcing, Hornbach’s Head of Import and three buyers from Menards who attended via internet tele-conference. Participating buyers told us that the quality of the meetings was outstanding and the face to face time with suppliers added great value to their efficiency and experience at the fair.”
One of the attendee favorites was the “DIY Store Tour,” a bus tour to three DIY retailers located in the greater Cologne area to learn about retail management experiences specific to the German retailers OBI, Knauber and Toom.
The International Hardware Fair/Eisenwarenmesse takes place in March every two years in Cologne, Germany in 11 halls of the Koelnmesse fairgrounds. The event is widely recognized as the leading industry trade show for the international tools, fasteners, fittings and the home improvement industry. Products offered here apply to domestic as well as industrial use.
Healthy Key Control with KeyWatcher® System
Palmetto Health Richland in Columbia, S.C., is known for high quality medical care and an expert clinical staff. The facility’s intelligent design and practices include a sophisticated access control system using the Morse Watchmans KeyWatcher® key control and management solution.
The many buildings located on the campus are each equipped with a card-based access control system to control entry and exit activity; employees enter buildings and/or areas using their pre-authorized access cards. Security management has specially programmed master access control card keys that allow entry to all areas secured by the card access system. To safely secure these master access control keys when not in use and to automate the transaction management, the hospital uses the Morse Watchmans KeyWatcher system.
The keys are held in a KeyWatcher cabinet that can only be opened by individuals who have been pre-programmed into the system. To open the cabinet and access a key, the individual enters an authorized code and then presents his or her card access identification badge to the built-in proximity reader. If the criteria entered matches the information stored in the system database, the key cabinet will unlock and the necessary key can be removed or returned. The computerized system automatically records the access activity of each transaction, including user, date and time of checkout/return.
According to Henry Simons, Director of Security and Volunteer Services for Palmetto Health, the system and access procedures help to ensure accountability and the safekeeping and integrity of the master keys.
“The previous manual system was simply too ineffective and labor intensive. Both security and engineering kept and managed keys but neither had full ownership of the entire process,” said Mr. Simons. “The KeyWatcher system resolved the problem. Each department installed a KeyWatcher cabinet with automated tracking that allows us to control the keys assigned to our individual departments. We can now hold individuals accountable for a key and thereby lessen the risk of our master system being compromised.”
The hospital custom designed the system to include the two-step entry process as well as allow integration of the KeyWatcher system with its card access system. Any time the KeyWatcher cabinet is accessed, the activity pops up on the access control system screen and anything out of the ordinary is immediately identified. The data from the KeyWatcher is also folded into the reports produced by the card access system to give a complete picture for analysis or follow-up investigation.
Morse Watchmans Positioned for Strong IFSEC Exhibit with Focus on Innovations in Key Control Technology