The NRW event industry regularly attracts around six million visitors to more than 100 leading trade fairs. After all, the metropolitan region in the heart of Europe around Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Essen and Cologne is the world’s No. 1 location for trade fairs with venues offering more than 700,000 square metres of exhibition space. Conferences, festivals, awards ceremonies and leading international events for the industry and general public make NRW a year-round location for new market trends and current debates. NRW offers suitable locations of all sizes and types, professional service providers and, last but not least, an inspiring cultural environment and the Rhenish way of life.

Facts and figures

  • leading trade fairs, conferences and professional events with millions of visitors from all over the world
  • gamescom, DMEXCO, ANGA COM, Film Festival Cologne, Seriencamp Festival, VideoDays Festival
  • lit.Cologne – Europe’s largest reading festival with more than 111,000 visitors
  • important awards ceremonies from the Germany Television Award through the Grimme Award and Grimme Online Award to the 1LIVE Krone

More information:

Events in NRW

Dr. Martina Richter
Director Film Festival Cologne
Since its inception 30 years ago, the Film Festival Cologne is at the medial pulse of our time. Year by year the festival provides an international perspective and crossmedia discussion of current developments in the world of audio-visual content, film and Internet to the already well-positioned media and digital location NRW.
Gerald Böse
chairman of the board Koelnmesse
Cologne's trade fairs for digital entertainment are a strong driving force for the city, important ambassadors for the media region of NRW and key innovators in live visual communication. In 2020, the digital gamescom and DMEXCO@home demonstrated new approaches to hybrid trade fair formats of the future.
Dr. Frauke Gerlach
Grimme Director
What began with a prize was later augmented by training programmes and other prizes and now completed by research activities about the digital shift and more: that's the Grimme Institute. But, in essence, more than five decades have been spent here focused on the eternal and equally topical and fascinating question about the quality of media - an important contribution to the media hub of NRW.
Maxa Zoller
Head of IFFF Dortmund | Cologne
The films produced and shown in NRW reflect the dynamics of the Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan region. Films by and with strong women encounter a professional audience at the International Women’s Film Festival Dortmund | Cologne and subsequently come into the cinemas – and have being doing so now for over 30 years!