Kai Hattendorf Named New Managing Director of UFI, The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry

June 15, 2015

UFI, The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry named Kai Hattendorf as its new managing director to replace Paul Woodward, who will be stepping down in November.

The announcement was made on the opening day of the UFI Open Seminar in Europe, June 15-17 in Istanbul, Turkey.

Hattendorf currently is vice president, Digital Business & Entertainment at Messe Frankfurt and was selected in a in a process led by the UFI president, Andrés Lopez-Valderrama and his Executive Committee, and supported by the international search firm, Heidrick & Struggles.

“I am personally very pleased with the quality of candidates we saw and in particular that we have been able to recruit a senior executive of Kai’s caliber to lead UFI,” Lopez-Valderrama said.

He added, “His experience at one of the world’s leading exhibition companies and as a seasoned communications professional will be critical in leading UFI on to address the challenges and opportunities our industry faces.”

Hattendorf’s duties at UFI will include daily management of all UFI activities and responsibility for the teams working in its three offices in Paris, Hong Kong and Sharjah.

“I’m looking forward to joining UFI later this year and to continue the great work Paul and the dedicated team have done in the past years,” Hattendorf said.

He added, “Change in the exhibition industry is accelerating. As the global voice of our industry, UFI is in a unique position to support its members all around the world in addressing these changes.”

Hattendorf joins UFI from Messe Frankfurt Group, where he has held various senior executive positions over the past years including overseeing trade shows, digital business, communications and marketing.

“We congratulate UFI on this appointment,” said Wolfgang Marzin, CEO of Messe Frankfurt.

He added, “With Kai Hattendorf, the association will have a renowned communications and digital expert with an extensive knowledge of the international trade fair industry at its helm."

Hattendorf’s previous career includes leadership positions in marketing/strategic communications, as well as strategy and product development in the ITC and media industry for Deutsche Telekom Group, dpa (the German Presse Agency) and a start-up.

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