AAD2018 growing by the day


Africa Aerospace & Defence (AAD2018), which will take place at Air Force Base Waterkloof in Tshwane from 19 to 23 September 2018, is fast approaching, and all indications are that the popular exhibition and air show is gearing up to be bigger and better.

According to the organisers, space bookings have exceeded expectations. "Currently 94% of outdoor space and 91% of all available indoor exhibitions space has been booked," said Leon Dillman, CEO of the Commercial Aviation Association of Southern Africa (CAASA). "This year our exhibitors have given us a lot of support by signing up 80% of the available hospitality chalets”, continued Dillman. According to Dillman, AAD2018 is boasting a record 14 national pavilions, including Russia, China, the USA, UK, Turkey, Italy, Germany, Czech Republic and Poland. France’s participation at AAD2018 is with a new national pavilion. Five nations are expanding its pavilions, with Canada, Brazil, Namibia and Zimbabwe considering building a national pavilion each.

AAD is managed by a partnership comprising the Department of Defence, Armscor, the South African Aerospace, Maritime and Defence Industry Association (AMD) and CAASA. Each entity has an opportunity to host the biennial event on a rotational basis. CAASA is responsible for staging AAD2018.

For prospective exhibitors it is important to note that all exhibition bookings are accepted on a first-come-first-serve basis in accordance with the exhibition regulations. Bookings can be made by accessing the E-zone on the AAD website http://www.aadexpo.co.za/portal/login

AAD2018 will see the return of some of the major manufacturers that have confirmed participation for this year; including Boeing, Dassault and Embraer, along with Mahindra Aerospace, local firm Paramount Group, Safomar and others, according to Dillman. “We’ve had a great deal of interest from RPAS (Drone) companies and unmanned aerial vehicle manufacturers,” said Dillman. “For that reason, AAD2018 will feature a dedicated drone pavilion – only the second time that this has been done. Moreover, the Opening Ceremony will feature a military tattoo for the first time ever.” There will be seminars hosted on the business days concurrently with AAD2018, and the organisers are currently working on the agendas including Cyber Security. Further details will be communicated in due course.

“Our presentation theatres have proved to be popular in the past. With a seating capacity of fifty (50), the theatres are ideal for product or country presentations and smaller media briefings,” Dillman concluded. There are also numerous other opportunities for exhibitors to create strong brand awareness, especially sponsorships and on-site branding. Exhibitors are advised to visit the official AAD2018 website: http://www.aadexpo.co.za/ Key service providers and contractors, including stand builders, security, logistics, hospitality chalet providers, the official exhibition catalogue and the show daily publication, have been contracted. These service providers are listed on the website along with contact details

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