Media Release | MCH Group | CEO René Kamm resigns

MCH Group: CEO René Kamm resigns

The Supervisory Board of MCH Group and CEO René Kamm have reached the joint and mutual conclusion that the time has come for a change in the operational leadership of MCH Group in view of the fundamental transformation phase in business operations. René Kamm will resign from his position as CEO of MCH Group. He will ensure a proper transfer of operations and will be at the company's disposal over the coming months to provide advice should the need arise. The Ulrich Vischer, Chairman of the Board of Directors, will adopt responsibility for the Group's operational leadership in close cooperation with the members of the Executive Board during the transition period until the appointment of a successor to René Kamm.

During his nearly 20 years with MCH Group, René Kamm played a crucial role in developing the Basel trade fair and positioned the company on new foundations. «We owe a great deal to René Kamm», says Chairman Ulrich Vischer. «Not only has he decisively shaped world-renowned exhibitions such as Art Basel and Baselworld, he also recognised early on the changes that digitalisation and multi-channel concepts bring with them and, in doing so, advanced the diversification and internationalisation of MCH Group.»

René Kamm began his career in 1999 as the director of Baselworld, which he turned into the most important international trade fair in the watch and jewellery segment. He transformed the purely national trade fair company into an international group, placed the focus on collectors' exhibitions and added Live Marketing Solutions and Event Services, such as those offered by the MC2 company acquired just over a year ago in den USA, to the corporate offering. «I have experienced close to 20 exciting years with Basel Exhibition, Swiss Exhibition and MCH Group», says René Kamm: «I had the opportunity to get to know every aspect of this segment and, as CEO from 2003 on, drive the group's development from a nationally aligned trade fair company to an internationally aligned Live Marketing Group.» 

Questions concerning the development of MCH Group's financial results

Last Sunday, Swatch Group announced via Sunday's media publications its decision not to participate in the Baselworld 2019, a decision MCH Group deeply regrets. Although it does not generally question the continuation of the Baselworld trade fair, the withdrawal of this important exhibitor has led to questions concerning the consequences for MCH Group's results. 

The responsible for Baselworld are engaged in intensive exchange with major segment representatives and have created a solid basis for a successful Baselworld 2019 in the form of conceptional innovations. The decision by Swatch Group not to participate in Baselworld 2019 will have an effect on the results for 2019 that are as yet inestimable.

The question here is whether a additional value adjustment on the exhibition premises in Basel will be necessary. As stated in a communication from February 2018, this depends on the future utilisation of the exhibition premises' capacity and the success of the events it hosts. The corresponding estimation is subject to continuous review.

MCH Group is currently engaged in a transformation process during which it is adapting its alignment to future requirements of the classic trade fair and events business. It will continue to pursue the corporate strategy of expanding its range of services, strengthening its international presence and increasing digitisation as a matter of principle. MCH is confident that strategy implementation will be successful. The intention is to bring the strategic initiatives launched in recent years to successful completion to compensate for the market-driven downturns in the classic trade fair and event business.

MCH Group will publish information about the half-year results for 2018 on 4 September 2018 and will then be able to provide further information with regard to the expected development of results. 


Unfortunately, the media release published by MCH Group on 30 July concerning developments at Baselworld contained an error. The meeting of 4 July 2018 took place not with the «Comité Consultatif», as was mentioned in the release, but rather with the extended «Comité Mondial». According to the exhibitors regulations, members of the «Comité Consultatif» are by definition also members of the «Comité Mondial».

Media release online


Note for the media:

Friday, 3 August 2018, 09.00 CET, Messe Basel, Messeturm, 2nd floor, conference room Paris.
Ulrich Vischer, René Kamm and Beat Zwahlen will provide answers and information to the media during the press conference.

Contact for the media:

MCH Group AG
Corporate Communications
Christian Jecker
+41 58 206 22 52

MCH Group

MCH Group is an internationally leading Live Marketing enterprise with a comprehensive network of services covering the entire exhibition and event market. It is based in Basel/Switzerland and holds the trade fairs in Basel, Lausanne and Zurich in its portfolio. It organises and hosts around 90 trade fairs. Its companies operating in the "Live Marketing Solutions" segment - MCH Global, Reflection Marketing, Rufener, Expomobilia, MC2 und Winkler Livecom - are active around the world and offer customised marketing solutions in the fields of Strategy and Conception, Marketing Consulting, Event Management, Exhibition and Event Construction and Multimedia Solutions.