St Eriksmässan

Our history

The year Stockholmsmässan is founded. Brothers Börje and Folke Claeson had traveled around the continent visiting various exhibitions, which inspired them to set up an exhibition in Stockholm. The Royal Tennis Stadium is hired for exhibition activities. The exhibition is called St:Eriks-Mässan, and the name is used until 1976.

The new owners, the City of Stockholm and Stockholm’s Chamber of Commerce, take over and Bengt Hult is appointed CEO.

Time for S:t Eriks-Mässan to move and the suggested locations are Älvsjö or Järvafältet. On November 12, Mayor P-O Hanson breaks ground for the construction of Hall A and Hall B in Älvsjö. The plans call for  a combined exhibition space of 20,300 sqm.

On November 2, 1970, the exhibition staff move into the new venue.

The Älvsjö exhibition center is officially opened by King Gustaf VI Adolf.

St:Eriks-Mässan changes its name to Stockholmsmässan.

Hall C with its adjoining gallery and brasserie is built, adding another 6,000 sqm of exhibition space.

Hall D is opened with an exhibition space of about 4,000 sqm, as well as a new gallery and entrance hall, and Stockholmsmässan is ready to compete on the international market.

Tom Beyer takes over as the new CEO of Stockholmsmässan. Hall E is opened adding 8,900 sqm of exhibition space.

The conversion of Hall B into a combined exhibition and congress hall is completed in October. The new space is renamed Victoria Hall after Sweden’s Crown Princess.

Stockholmsmässan starts Vision 2000 – an extensive construction and renovation program. Plans include a new exhibition hall and a first-class hotel. In the fall of 1997 construction is completed on a glass-roofed walkway from the station, new restaurants in the entrance hall and gallery, new mobile entrance booths, a renovated congress foyer, a revitalized entrance hall, new lighting, new color schemes and material, etc. 

The new Stockholmsmässan is officially opened on January 13 by King Carl XVI Gustaf, accompanied by Queen Silvia, Princess Lilian and 3,500 guests. The new Hall C covers 14,000 sqm and includes new facades, new restaurants, new entrances and new congress rooms. The exhibition sets records during the year in terms of turnover and number of visitors. Events during that year include eight world conferences, approximately 30 trade fairs and ten public exhibitions.

Stockholmsmässan arranges several very important events – in particular the EU Summit at the end of May. With Sweden as the chair country and under the leadership of Prime Minister Göran Persson, we have the pleasure of welcoming all of the EU heads of states as well as one additional special guest - Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In September Stockholmsmässan hosts Europe’s largest congress – the Cardiology Congress. More than 20,000 delegates gather to stay, eat and be entertained in our beautiful city.  The financial year can be summarized as very intense and eventful and posts record-breaking turnover.  Close to one million people visit the exhibition center’s events over the course of the year, attending more than 50 exhibitions and 300 congresses.

A successful and eventful exhibition and congress year. Despite of the prevailing economic climate, turnover and the number of visitors continue to set new records. The large, established industry exhibitions, including Elektronik, Möbelmässan, Nordbygg, SPCI and Tekniska Mässan, maintain their already strong positions.

The public exhibitions, both established and new, attract hundreds of thousands of visitors, and several large international congresses draw several thousand delegates to Stockholm.

The owners of Sollentunamässan AB decide to phase out their exhibition activities. Stockholmsmässan takes over all Sollentunamässan brands in June.

Stockholmsmässan draws 1.3 million visitors. Of these, 1,070,934 visit the 69 exhibitions, and 280,451 people participate in congresses, seminars, AGMs and anniversary celebrations. Thirty-seven major congresses are organized.

Online marketing initiatives increase. Through our databases, 600,000 people receive online information about our events.  One hundred different web sites are created.

The exhibition market posts strong growth during the year.  Stockholmsmässan’s well-known industry and public exhibitions, such as Nordbygg, Stockholm Furniture Fair, Formex, Hem&Villa, Swedental and Tekniska Mässan, strengthen their positions and are all able to report not only a profit but also an increase in the number of both exhibitors and visitors.

Construction begins on a hotel adjacent to the exhibition and congress center.

Stockholmsmässan’s efforts do not only benefit itself.  According to a survey conducted in 2004, Stockholmsmässan generates more than SEK 2.2 billion in income for businesses in the Stockholm region. Each krona spent on a visit to Stockholmsmässan generates an additional four kronor in income for companies and local and regional governments in Stockholm.  This makes Stockholmsmässan the single largest generator of tourism income in Sweden.

Another successful year for Stockholmsmässan, including Europe’s largest congress, which is attended by 24,000 cardiologists, and the world’s largest exhibition for the paper and pulp industry, SPCI. Stockholm Furniture Fair strengthens its position as one of the most important furniture and interior design exhibitions in Europe.

The year gets off to a fantastic start and during the first six months the turnover increases by an impressive 30% to SEK 371 million.  The number of visitors to Stockholmsmässan’s events increases during the same period by 39% to 619,700.

The new Rica Talk Hotel opens during the spring with 248 rooms and suites on 18 floors. It also has a conference area, restaurant and lobby bar. It is operated by Rica Hotels.

In September the new Talk meeting area is opened with a large party for 1,900 invited guests.

Stockholmsmässan’s best congress year ever. Several of Stockholmsmässan’s large exhibitions continue to grow, both in terms of visitors and exhibiting companies.

A decision is made in April to expand Stockholmsmässan’s hall capacity. The addition of 8,400 sqm will enable Stockholmsmässan to offer its exhibitors and congress organizers a total exhibition space of almost 70,000 sqm.  

A record-breaking year for Stockholmsmässan as turnover rises to SEK 736 million. It is estimated that over the course of the year Stockholmsmässan's exhibitors, visitors and congress delegates generate roughly SEK 3.8 billion in income for hotels, restaurants, transport firms and shops in the region.

The venue extensions begin and include 27,400 sqm of exhibition and congress space, a new entrance, restaurants and a parking garage under the new exhibition hall.

Patric Sjöberg takes over as CEO following the retirement of Tom Beyer.

Stockholmsmässan’s new extension is completed at the end of the year. The total exhibition space is now 70,000 sqm, which makes Stockholmsmässan the Nordic region’s largest exhibition and congress center.

The exhibition staff come together to define a shared system of values that will form the basis of their daily activities and help achieve operational targets.

Major events during the year include the European Urology Congress (EAU) with 10,000 delegates and the EU Forum for Overseas Aid with 4,000 delegates.

The best congress year in the history of Stockholmsmässan, with more than 165,000 delegates attending 2,500 congresses, conferences and corporate events. Exhibition activities continue to grow and 959,000 people visit the 71 exhibitions organized during the year.  In total, a combined 1.3 million visitors attend the exhibitions and congresses.

This is a year of investment as Stockholmsmässan continues to make improvements that will offer even better service to congress organizers, exhibitors and meeting participants. The Fast Forward change program is completed, making the organization more efficient, flexible and open to new business opportunities. Stockholmsmässan also undergoes a reorganization in order to create centralized functions that will work more efficiently.

The focus this year is to implement and secure all of the initiatives started during the extensive change project that was underway in 2009–2010. Stockholmsmässan Academy is founded and will continue the development of Stockholmsmässan’s employees. It is also an intense year in terms of the number of events; during the fall, 65 events are held in 100 days, which is a record for Stockholmsmässan.

Stockholmsmässan enters into a collaboration with the TV4 Group during the year with the goal of developing new ways to meet visitors across multiple integrated media channels. Stockholmsmässan also expands its repertoire to include new events such as the NRJ Experience dance event, the Kristallen TV Awards and the Winter Show Ski Exhibition.

Gallery A is completely renovated. Its makeover includes new lighting, living walls and revamped conference rooms. A decision is also made to build a new main entrance.  

Stockholmsmässan is the co-founder of Green Meeting Industry Council, GMIC Sweden, for environmentally conscious meeting venues.

In May 2012 ground is broken for Stockholmsmässan’s next major investment, a complete refurbishment of the main entrance area. The Materials Library is acquired, which becomes Stockholmsmässan’s first permanent exhibition with focus on material samples.

SL opens a commuter train line between Uppsala/Arlanda and Älvsjö, to the delight of our international guests, who now no longer need to change trains at the central station.

We start Service i Världsklass (World-Class Service), a major initiative focusing on service that includes training for all employees inspired by Disney University.

The dip in the economy affects Stockholmsmässan’s exhibitors making it necessary to initiate an extensive savings program, which includes letting go 22 permanent employees

The completely refurbished entrance area opens in August. The airy, new main entrance also includes a brand new Press Center that looks out over the foyer area.

Älvsjö gård undergoes extensive renovations, and when completed will be available as a conference venue for exclusive meetings in a country estate environment.

Two new meetings are added during the year: Working for Change, which focuses on diversity issues, and Digital Health Days, for the interface between IT and healthcare. The meetings are in addition to our classic exhibitions and represent a new facet to our event portfolio.

After several years of development, Stockholmsmässan’s own visitor management system is rolled out. It includes cash register and registration functions and makes it easy for visitors to buy tickets online.

The savings program that was initiated in 2012 continues during the year, but Stockholmsmässan still reports a loss.

Growth returns to Stockholmsmässan. Turnover lands at SEK 654 million and the contribution to the regional economy is a record-setting SEK 4.4 billion. The large exhibitions still represent the majority of Stockholmsässan’s revenue, but the year includes no less than nine international congresses.

In May, Stockholm hosts the Bocuse d’Or Europe, which is held at Stockholmsmässan in conjunction with the food exhibition, GastroNord.

Scandic takes over Rica Hotels and our hotel is therefore renamed Scandic Talk.

IT investments continue to grow – for better service for customers, for simpler communication and for more convenient work procedures. For example, during the year the exhibitor portal, Event Planner, is created and Stockholmsmässan’s wireless network is expanded.