Sustainability: Ecological, Economic, Social
As our motto "Growth in Balance" suggests, Leipziger Messe is committed to corporate responsibility and the principle of sustainability. We respect and take into account the interests of the environment as well as those of our fellow human beings and business partners. Dedicated to sustainability as a guiding principle, we strive to conserve resources, save energy, develop regional synergies and address social issues in our role as an organiser, service provider and partner for international events. For our achievements in environmental protection, social responsibility and economic sustainability, we have been awarded Green Globe environmental and sustainability certification with platinum member status.
Leipziger Messe has declared its commitment to the
17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
(PDF, 1 MB)
of the United Nations. These 17 goals provide guiding principles for sustainable development that can be used by governments, civil societies, individuals and businesses when addressing the global challenges of poverty, social injustice, climate change and environmental degradation. We contribute by focussing our sustainability strategy on the following six SDGs which reflect our core business.
By conserving resources and using energy, water and finite raw materials consciously, Leipziger Messe shows how environmental sustainability can be implemented in the event business. You can find out more about the sustainable design of the exhibition grounds and how we use resources responsibly. In addition, Leipziger Messe has invested in a range of initiatives supporting sustainability in the areas of energy supply, advertising and mobility.
For a company to be economically sustainable it must be profitable in the long term, while also making a positive contribution to society and the economy. Leipziger Messe is a powerful economic engine in the city and local area. Among other things, it creates and secures jobs. As a driving force of sustainability, we develop and implement innovative concepts. Responsible, legally compliant business practices are essential prerequisites for successful, sustainable growth.
Long-term sustainability is dependent on social factors and their positive impact on employees and service partners. Leipziger Messe has incorporated numerous social components into its business strategy and integrated the following into its corporate activities: fair and transparent pay governed by a collective wage agreement, professional development and training opportunities, a broadly based health management programme, flexible working time models and other initiatives to support employees in balancing work and family.
Numerous initiatives undertaken at the Leipzig exhibition site show how environmental sustainability can be implemented in the complex business of event organisation. Please refer to our map for a brief overview.
A Green Exhibition Centre
The buildings operated by Leipziger Messe are nestled in a park-like setting with a lake and over 25,000 trees. In addition, the administration building and the Congress Center Leipzig (CCL) have green roofs. The green area covers 17,961 square meters and provides a valuable habitat for rare species including numerous types of dragonfly and butterfly. In addition to the ecological benefits, green roofs also extend the life of the roof water-proofing thanks to the mechanical protection they provide against extreme temperatures and the elements. A white roof foil on the exhibition halls helps to make climate control more efficient. Yet another species took up residence on the exhibition grounds in the summer of 2018 when five bee colonies were established in a wildflower meadow. They are cared for by a local beekeeper.
In keeping with targets set by the City of Leipzig, Leipziger Messe aims to be carbon neutral by 2040 at the latest. We have been using 100 per cent green electricity for the entire site since the beginning of 2023. In the summer of 2023, a rooftop photovoltaic system delivering 1.0 megawatt of power was installed on top of the maintenance centre, the west wing and the Messehaus conference facility. The power generated by all 2,646 modules is expected to reduce the power obtained from external sources by 15 per cent in the future. Leipziger Messe already uses its own combined heat and power plant to cover the site's basic heat and electricity needs (total output = approx. 800 kilowatts). Additional energy savings come from the combined use of an ice bank with a refrigeration system and from a modern heat exchanger for ventilation.
Managing Waste & Conserving Resources
The Leipziger Messe waste disposal concept is based on four-chamber containers for sorting waste. Exhibitors can also sort their waste before disposal. Before disposal takes place, lift/dump installations and waste compactors reduce the volume of waste so it needs to be collected less often, thus reducing CO₂ emissions. Increasingly comprehensive automation and digitisation processes are also being applied to other workflows in order to make them sustainable. Furthermore, binding and sustainable procurement guidelines have been laid out. These involve giving priority to vendor quotes that show reliable evidence of positive environmental characteristics and sustainable management in production, sales or service. As early as 2019, Leipziger Messe began focusing on sustainable advertising materials such as cups and hand-held fans made of rapidly renewable raw materials.
The Leipziger Messe exhibition site is well connected to local public transport, thus ensuring it can be reached by climate-friendly travel on buses, trams or suburban trains. Thanks to cooperation with the Leipzig transportation systems, travel to and from many events using public transport is included in visitors’ trade fair tickets. In addition, there are also special programmes for reduced fares on public transport for organisers and conference participants. In support of sustainable, climate-friendly transportation based on renewable energies, the site also has charging stations for electric vehicles and e-bikes.
Sustainability in Catering
fairgourmet is continuously developing new initiatives to make catering for the many thousands of visitors to the exhibitions and conferences more sustainable. Vegetarian options are one of many elements of its strategy. The company has been exclusively serving certified organic and fair-trade coffee since 2013. Procurement generally focuses on sustainable farming and fair-trade products. Products and suppliers are selected according to ecological and social criteria, and local foods are given priority. The company uses reusable tableware and cutlery as a matter of principle. Drink bottles are mostly made of glass. If disposable tableware is unavoidable for logistical reasons, fairgourmet uses 100% biodegradable, i.e., climate-neutral materials. The company fundamentally rejects the use of aluminium foil in the kitchen and has replaced disposable aluminium plates with reusable plates for delivering food to the exhibition stands.
More information is available on the fairgourmet website.
The events organised by Leipziger Messe have a sustainable impact on the local economy. The group also plays an active role as a partner in a strong network.
Positive Economic Impact
Leipziger Messe secures almost 6,600 jobs of which 4,700 alone are in the Free State of Saxony and 3,800 are in Leipzig itself. Across Germany, the impact that Leipziger Messe has on purchasing power comes to more than 656 million euros. Furthermore, the trade fairs and conferences in Leipzig generate more than 120 million euros in annual tax revenues. Events additionally result in contracts as well as opportunities for local companies to come into contact with national and international customers. Purchasing decisions made by the Leipziger Messe Group of Companies represent yet another benefit for local businesses.
The Hotel Initiative
Leipziger Messe and its partner hotels in Leipzig have agreed on preferential conditions and shorter cancellation periods for hotel bookings for exhibitors, visitors and organisers. By minimising financial risk, the planning security for participants at on-site events in Leipzig can be improved. The most important aim of the initiative is to provide an attractive service to address the challenges of changing customer booking behaviour.
Leipziger Messe is a fair and attractive employer. We train young people and accompany them as they launch their careers. We are also committed to providing support in the surrounding region.
A Family-Friendly and Fair Employer
With fair wages anchored in our collective wage agreement to ensure pay is based on qualifications, Leipziger Messe creates fair working conditions and a non-discriminatory working environment. Flexible working hours, part-time and flextime models and the option of working remotely help our employees balance family and work. In addition, we also facilitate placements in child-care centres. Employees have access to sustainable mobility options, a variety of health services at the workplace and a company pension scheme. By establishing principles that provide clear guidance for all employees, our Code of Conduct demonstrates our dedication to treating each other with respect and to engaging in legal, ethical, loyal and responsible business practices.
High-Quality Training and Professional Development
In addition to training future professionals in four career paths, the Leipziger Messe Group of Companies also provides work experience in two specialisations for students pursuing dual work-study programmes. To complete the range of training opportunities, internships for students are offered in many areas of the company. In order to open up new prospects for young people, Leipziger Messe participates in nationwide career orientation events such as "Girls’ Day" and "Boys’ Day". Regular in-house training is provided for employees, covering issues relevant to first responders and firefighters, occupational safety and data protection, information security and compliance as well as sales. In addition to having their own e-learning portal, employees can also use learning apps individually.
Working Together Across the Region
Leipziger Messe is involved in local, regional and nationwide initiatives and networks for education and families as well as in social and cultural issues. The company was one of the first signatories of the city of Leipzig’s "Children and Families Welcome!” joint declaration, for instance, and supports the city's family friendliness award. We also sponsor social and cultural events. In other words, Leipziger Messe thinks beyond the gates of its own company and supports sustainable developments to help build a strong region with a high quality of life.