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Exclusive interview: French COGES Director & CEO evaluates Eurosatory 2016, No. 1 in the world.

The Director General & CEO of French  COGES General (Ret.) Patrick COLAS DES FRANCS with our Publisher Victor Bjorgan, at Eurosatory 2016.

The Director General & CEO of French COGES General (Ret.) Patrick COLAS DES FRANCS with our Publisher Victor Bjorgan, at Eurosatory 2016.

Paris June 17th.-  The Director General & CEO of COGES, General (Ret.) Patrick COLAS DES FRANCS , was interviewed by Europe Security News and asked for an evaluation of EUROSATORY 2016.

COGES is the “Commissariat Général des Expositions et Salons du GICAT”, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the French land and air-land defence and security industries Association GICAT. 

COGES is devoted to promoting French land and air-land Defence and Security industries and their sectors worldwide, through the participation in international shows and fairs.

Speaking about Eurosatory, Mr. Colas des Francs started with a few figures. The amount exhibitors increased 5% this year up to 1572 exhibitors (66% foreigners). The amount of visitors was stable, comparatively little decrease of visitors on Monday 13th “maybe linked to the strikes, demonstrations and violence broadcasted on TV that occurred in Paris the days before”. On the other hand we are happy with the amount of visitors of Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and we are optimistic about the figures today Friday”.

COGES President informed that ” the visit of official delegations also increased a lot, up to 213 delegations and that nearly represents 900 (nine hundred) VIP’s and decision makers, 25 Ministers of Defense, many high ranked Chiefs of Staff, Police, Military, Firemen.    The official delegations are the key of the show. Also  around 1018 journalists were registered to visit the show (50% foreigners).”

The Director General of COGES also stated that “Eurosatory started mainly as a defense show, but in the last years there was an evolution into Security, to reach a more balanced show between security and defense. The tendencies are a increase of exhibitors from Asia: the Korean stand was huge this year, also the Chinese and Japanese, many Asiatic official delegations visited Eurosatory this year. Now Eurosatory is a worldwide show and we affirm that it is the No 1 in the world. Why? Because we make efforts to improve the show in many aspects. The show had a certain Nomenclatura of products to the present, but our commercial teams work to balance the presence of products, we can not have 20 stands on communications and f.e. only one on UAV’s, so we must cover all the domains of security, to achieve a more balanced show, more variety to see.”

General Patrick Colas des Francs also said that ” the second point is to cover main countries producers of  devices, that must be present in our show. The third point is to have all industries and parts of a certain product. If we have a truck, we want also those who produced the engines, tires, glass, etc.. all components of the industrial chain of a certain product. So that we assure business in the show between main suppliers and producers.”

“Another interesting point is that we have the Eurosatory Guests. Imagine a new Minister of  Defense of  Country X. Maybe he/she was before that Minister of Transport , so he/she has little experience on defense and/or security. So our teams collect information to define the key people in the Ministry that are also decision makers because they give advice to the Minister, or key people in training centers, etc. So we invite the key people to the show.  This are our Eurosatory Guests. The first Eurosatory occurred in 1957, and now we had 55 shows. I (Gral. Colas des Francs) have been responsible for nine of them”.

” Now we put focus on the quality of the show, the quality of the business, there are many shows in the world that are owned by hedge funds and what this funds want are revenues, the owners ask for money. So there is little investment to build up a better show next year. But in our case, we must think in the future. COGES belongs to GICAT, and is a industry made by industrials, so part of the benefits go to upgrade the show.”

We asked General Colas des Francs if COGES organizes also other shows in the world.

He said “COGES is in charge of the French national pavilions at a selection of 12 international Defence and/or Security exhibitions worldwide, near one pavilion each month every year.”

“Since 2015, COGES also created targeted events/shows outside France”, said Mr. Colas des Francs , ” in Southeast Asia, COGES created the Asia-Pacific Homeland Security in Singapore, which is the first exhibition devoted to Civil Defense, natural and industrial disaster management and Public Safety in the Asia-Pacific region. Why natural disasters? Asia is the region in the world with more natural and industrial disasters like f.e. the Fukujima nuclear accident in Japan. ”

COGES’ General Director added “in Latin America, COGES signed a  twenty  years agreement with the Colombian Government to create EXPODEFENSA, which is the reference Defence and Security exhibition in Latin America (tri-services: Land, Air and Naval forces). The last show in Colombia was in december with 250 exhibitors.”

“In Africa, COGES bought a show called Shield Africa, that was originally founded/created by a young Ivorian in Abidjan and Libreville. COGES signed an alliance with the former organizers, and this show will cover all continents, but only on Security. Why only Security? Because Africa does not need more weapons, does not need more armament. The development of Africa need Security, food security, ports security, transportation security. COGES has an agreement with the Ministry of Interior in Abidjan, and the next Shield Africa Show will be carried out in February 2017 ” finalizing the Director General & CEO of COGES General (Ret.) Patrick COLAS DES FRANCS with the exclusive interview with our Europe Security News.