13-Sep-2021 Source: HeliHub.com
Helitech Expo – running in London 5-6 October – is looking like a very small shadow of its former self. Having been bought by Prysm Group from Reed in March 2020, the new owners renamed the event back to Helitech from its previous incarnation of Vertical Flight Expo. It retains the split between helicopters and drones, the move that led Reed to change its name from Helitech in the first place.
Every helicopter manufacturer in the world has intentionally boycotted this event – not because Prysm have done anything wrong, but due to the emergence of European Rotors – set up by the European Helicopter Association (EHA) and regulator EASA. With EHA largely controlled by the manufacturers, they are giving 100% commitment to this new event in Cologne in November, which vicariously means side-lining Helitech. EASA’s interest in the event is that they are merging their annual long-running “Rotorcraft and VTOL Symposium” into it to make it even more appealing to the wider European helicopter industry
The brochure for Helitech arrived at HeliHub HQ today. The event is being held at the central London exhibition centre ExCeL, with the allocated area split equally between drones and helicopters. Here are some statistics we draw from our analysis of the brochure. There are just 52 exhibitors total listed for the helicopter area, although the floor plan shows 103 numbered booths/stands in that half of the exhibition space. This number includes four long narrow stands labelled H1 to H4 down the centre between the drone and helicopter areas. We assume that these are for helicopters, but no exhibitor is listed with these stand names against them.
Including the drone exhibitors brings the total to 109, so we cannot see any further evidence to support the bold “300+ exhibitors” in a red and white box on the cover.
Similarly, the seminar program is promoted on the front cover as “100+ Seminars”, but only 35 slots in total. Of these, 10 have a default image against them with the text “stay tuned for…”, suggesting there are only 25 seminars expected.
We are aware of a number of people who have attended Helitech (including under its “Vertical Flight Expo” name) who have been telephoned and offered free tickets to attend.
We wish Prysm well with this event