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The stand building and event industry evolves at a very large pace. Ever y thing has to be faster, more dynamic – with digitisation gaining speed in our industry as well. In t hi s s e c o n d e di t io n o f beMagazine you’ll find all about the newest trends, innovations and endless possibilities of the beMatrix frame system. We share information about our most interesting projects, but also highlight our vision and values, as well as those of the people who inspire us every day.


Contents beMatrix ambassador through and through! Interview with Uwe Friebe from ‘Artist MesseService und Bau’

VR and AR hold the future The digital (r)evolution is in full swing • case: 3D scanner

Big in Belgium Steven van Belleghem, expert in digital communication

The virtues of Sin City Welcome to Las Vegas!

Exhibiting from one country to the next Interview Larry Kulchawik • worldwide bePartner network

beManiacs in the spotlight Meet our internal sales department

And then there was light! The latest trends in the world of lighting

beInspired Creative with beMatrix

Sustainability and charity go hand in hand Forestation • water kiosks • sustainability study

No randomness The design behind everyday objects

Tasty and healthy food at the trade fair Do’s and don’ts

Expo centres with eventful architecture Lotus Building, Wujin (China)

From A to Z Project in the spotlight

Tips & Advice The beMatrix team takes the floor

Calendar What's on the program in 2019?

4 6 9 12 14 18 20 22 26 30 32 34 36 40 42

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beMatrix ambassador through and through! Interview with Uwe Friebe, Manager at ‘Artist MesseService und Bau’ (Paderborn, Germany), one of the first ever beMatrix clients. Uwe Friebe has been working in stand building since 1986 and joined forces with beMatrix in 1996, then still DeltaMatrix. Like no other he masters translating his clients’ requirements into effective stand concepts. Apart from his passion for stand building, Uwe also is a former European champion and world record-holder parachuting and has a penchant for music and travel.

Over the past years, what do you regard as beMatrix’ most important innovation? “That’s easy: the double clamp connector. This is the most successful connector in the beMatrix product range and is being used to connect frames. Thanks to this handy tool, erecting a stand is as easy as 1-2-3: just place the frames next to each other, then attach them using the clamp connector.”

When did you start using the beMatrix system and when did you get to know about beMatrix? “The Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum (HNF) in Paderborn, the largest computer museum in the world, was looking for a flexible system to be set up in their exhibition space; a system that was quick to assemble and break down, easy to configure in different ways etc. The beMatrix system ticked all these boxes. That is how we took our first steps with the original frame system with big holes. Back in 1996, the system was still being distributed under the DeltaMatrix brand, but the concept and benefits of the system have not changed since. The number of infills and options however has increased drastically, offering us even more reasons why it stands out from other systems. I am proud I can call myself one of the ‘early adopters’ of beMatrix.” Should you want to sell beMatrix to a third party, which USP would you use as a sales argument? “Innovation! Key to the success of beMatrix are novelties. Every year, improvements and innovations are launched, much to my enthusiasm. Also, the beMatrix team is very approachable, a great bonus in my opinion. As a customer, each time you are addressed in a very personable way. And then there is the fact the beMatrix system is a frontrunner in quality, compared to other manufacturers.”

Which beMatrix stands over the past years are you most happy with and why? “Each year we build all the stands at DIAM (Deutsche Fachmesse für Industriearmaturen) in Bochum, Germany. Considering the short timeframe we have to get everything done, the only system we can complete the job of building 3000 m² of individual stands is the beMatrix system, since this frame system excels on so many levels: light in weight, fast to assemble and very functional.” How do you see the system evolve over the coming years and what do you think beMatrix should focus on? “Hopefully they’ll open a distribution centre in Germany, offering the German market an even more flexible service. No doubt will there be more innovations announced. Me personally, I look forward to additional corner profiles (30°, 45° and flexible).”

What else, apart from the product and service, do you associate with beMatrix? “The beMatrix network truly is inspiring. Co-working is part of the DNA. The many training options (Academy, beCAD training...) allow me to enlarge my network and gain knowhow about our sector. I always return home with a bucket load of new insights.”

Did you know… Uwe gave beMatrix the idea to launch the green corners?

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VR and AR hold the future The digital (r)evolution is in full swing. Where up to now the digital story actually just added a thin layer on top of reality, today the analogue and digital world are almost becoming one. A great example is the increasing use of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) at events, trade fairs, congresses, award shows… you name it. The ways to apply this technology seem to be endless – and we haven’t even seen anything yet. A totally imaginary world, or an existing world containing some virtual elements. Ten years ago, VR and AR still were the odd ones out, weird ideas originating in the world of gaming and amusement parks. Today, both are becoming part of everyday life – and, thanks to the plethora in creative possibilities, even more so in the event industry. Curious about how VR can boost your event? First and foremost, it’s a great alternative for people who cannot physically attend, for whatever reason. You just need VR glasses and an app to be right in the middle of the action, at a concert or presentation, even see everything from different angles if the organiser installs 360° cameras in different corners – right from your very own sofa. Why not vice versa? If a speaker’s calendar doesn’t allow them to travel to your event, why not surprise your audience with a virtual speech from an inspiring location. Even when both parties are present, VR still allows you to add some innovative sauce. Launching a new product? Showcase a 3D model, not only boasting all possible colours and dimensions, but also offering visitors to see your product from all angles, to make their own configurations or even touch it. Another idea is to bring the origin of your product to life by evoking its development in a great virtual experience and by playing with time and space. No longer some dull list of facts and data, but exciting action. In case you would like to provide your guests some relaxing time-out in between presentation madness, use VR for gamification: don’t just demonstrate the new kitchen, but let your guests cook up something virtual… Unforgettable? For sure. You can even bring that moment back to life afterwards, and have your guests enjoy the event’s highlights all over again.

”Those who invest today in technology to predict consumer behaviour are tomorrow’s winners“ Evidently, for stand builders as well, the potential of VR and AR, practically as well as creatively, is huge. Winning over potential customers till now relied on innovative ideas and some nice 2D maps or 3D renders. However, providing a prospect with a VR proposal, immediately gives them an idea of the actual space and better insights in all materials and techniques used for the stand. This kind of 360° tour will also make your client feel they are fully informed. Incorrect assumptions will be countered quicker and most last minute changes avoided. For any business wanting to be future-proof, offering the customer an intense VR or AR experience meanwhile has become a must: “But not just as a gimmick, not just because everybody does it”, explains a VR developer. “VR has to be more than a virtual tour, more than an individual experience. As a stand designer, you should mainly consider how to integrate experience throughout the entire customer journey and how that reinforces the content of the stand holder’s offering. An AR adventure might be an option, but 360° photos, projections, screens, LED panels or holographic lenses might be as well. The individual experience might as well morph into a group experience, enabling visitors to interact with each other or with the salesperson, opening up a dialogue about product innovations or explaining more details on the production process.” Developers also point out VR and AR are becoming more mainstream, making technical equipment and headsets more affordable. Moreover, Artificial Intelligence will kick-start that process even more. That stand builder who succeeds in immediately identifying their clientele based on data from social media, eIDs and facial recognition will be able to customise the experience even further and to make sure these clients are even better informed: this is the key to the stand of the future!”

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beMatrix case: Staramba 3D scanner Staramba, with offices in Berlin and Los Angeles and and more than 100 experts in 23 countries, currently makes waves with the first ultra-realistic social VR network: STARAMBA.spaces. This platform opens a whole new world of possibilities for fans and their idols to stay in touch. Thanks to VR, everyone can have direct contact with their fans now. Staramba offers a feeling of proximity, between stars and their fans, like never before. It allows you to attend a training session with your sports hero or to develop your acting skills whilst being coached by a Hollywood icon. In order to make 3D scans of these celebs, Staramba has developed the ‘3D Instagraph’, one of the most advanced fullbody 3D scanning systems. This 3D scanner not only had to be the best in functionality, but also quick to assemble and offer modularity. Lo and behold, let that be one of the strengths of the beMatrix frame system, used to build the scanner.

© Staramba (DE)

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Big in Belgium Steven Van Belleghem In Belgium, but in many other countries also, Steven Van Belleghem’s name certainly rings a clear bell. A digital bell, since for years now, Van Belleghem has been renowned as a coach, lector and advisor, based on his digital marketing & customer story. After four books rolled out of his pen, he has now sold over 120,000 copies. In the meantime he travels the world, since he is welcomed everywhere as keynote speaker. Van Belleghem studied Applied Economics at Ghent University. His aunt was married to an American, so he used to spend many a summer in San Francisco. That is where he got the vibe for all things technology and entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley, which drove him to attain a second degree from Berkeley University. “To me, I was surrounded by an enormous source of inspiration. For my thesis, I interviewed about 20 large corporations on their take on launching high tech products.” After 18 months as an assistant researcher in Ghent, Van Belleghem started at InSites Consulting, a promising start-up in online marketing. This is when he wrote his first two books, both of which became a huge success. His first one, ‘The Conversation Manager’ was awarded ‘most innovative marketing book of the year’ and catapulted him into the speakers’ circuit. “I soon discovered that I loved speaking before an audience, so I decided to leave InSites to be able to give more lectures and start as an independent corporate coach and advisor.” These days, Van Belleghem is one of the spearheads at Nexxworks and content creation agency Snackbites, two businesses he founded himself. Snackbites has been sold to Intracto since, and Van Belleghem followed. Both businesses help other organisations to define their digital marketing strategy as well as to remain flexible and client focused in a continuously and rapidly changing world. He is also still active in field research and on many occasions invited as a keynote speaker, all over the world. So far, he has given keynote speeches in over 30 different countries. Steven Van Belleghem is married and has two children.

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His most recent book, ‘Customers the day after tomorrow’, explores the ways businesses can benefit from AI and automation. At least, once they succeed in attaining the same level with their customer service, since, as sure as eggs are eggs, the client of tomorrow will be totally different to the client of today… Tomorrow’s client seems a rather abstract concept. However, they should be today’s focus in any business. “It is crucial that companies are guided by clients’ expectations. My advice: be bold and dream about the ideal customer journey, how that is shaped in an ideal world, without any operational constraints. That perspective will then be your angle to analyse what already has changed today and what can already be improved tomorrow.” For businesses to be prepared for the customer of tomorrow, you describe three strategies. “Correct. In an AI driven world, data are the main raw material, so every company needs a data strategy. On the one hand, you need to map all repetitive processes so they can be automated later on. On the other hand, you need to collect data on clients’ behaviour. That is how you fire the circle of life of AI: the faster it rotates, the more agile your service level and the more ahead you’ll be compared to the competition. Take a car for instance: a car will tell you so much more than meets the eye. Your choice of destinations, the speed at which you drive, what music you listen to, whether you make phone calls whilst you’re on the move… All these data can be used to install new and better systems in cars. Secondly, I expect the ‘effortless interface’ to become the user environment of the future. Make sure people can effortlessly visit your website – to look up information, to buy goods, to request extra service…. We can learn so much from websites such as Amazon and Currently, voice interfaces are booming business: smart speakers that feed virtual assistants such as Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant. In the VS, 54% of households already owns such virtual assistant, here in Europe this phenomenon is still almost non-existent. But that will change soon. Since you only need your voice, there is no more need to push any buttons, scroll or click. Just ask a question. That is just one example of how ease of use and being approachable will increase your competitive edge.” And then thirdly… “This is what I like to call Augmented Intelligence. The main theme is: how can I apply smart technology to increase the performance and client focus of my sales department? How do you ensure your sales agents possess more apt knowledge, enabling them to perfectly answer your clients’ needs? When you have been staying in the same hotel for years, being welcomed by ‘Is this your first stay with us?’ will not make you feel happy. Many companies can really stand out, for the simple reason they actually meet their clients face-to-face; something which is totally impossible for Amazon. There still is a lot of untapped potential in upgrading this kind of skills.” Aren’t we in danger to turn our clients into spoiled brats? “Without a doubt. The level of expectations has become a lot higher compared to ten years ago. Old marketing principles, such as having a USP, are finished: excelling in one thing, staying average for everything else? No way: these days, we only expect 8’s and 9’s. So ask yourself: will I still be in a competitive position in five years’ time, without gaining any insights in my target group? Either you collect data, or you collaborate with the big players. Even car manufacturers such as Volvo and Renault started a collab with Google recently, out of fear they might miss the boat.” Will the small, local shopkeeper be able to stand strong against such monopolies? “I believe both can co-exist. The savoir-faire and passion of the local tradesman, together with the ease of use and client service offered by the juggernauts. Those who will feel the heat, are the ones who stay in the grey zone: little user-friendly, prices that aren’t that attractive, no specialty… I wouldn’t want to trade places.”

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The virtues of Sin City. Welcome to Las Vegas! Larger than life: some cities approach it, Las Vegas epitomises it. Endless fun and 24hrs entertainment galore in this desert metropole, grande dame of glitz extravaganza. But did you know that even when you prefer your money in pocket rather than on the gambling table, when you don’t touch a drop of alcohol and most certainly have no intention to tie the knot in a wedding chapel, Sin City holds a couple of well-kept secrets right up her sleeve... OASIS For a place where gambling was once outlawed and the Prohibition in the 1920 left people destitute, Las Vegas certainly has come a long way since. Nowhere in the world can you find more casinos, shows, bars and restaurants per square kilometre. You can sleep in one of the 14 world’s biggest hotels, in one of the at least 3,000 rooms. Mind you, sleeping… most hotels house casinos where gambling continues 24 hours per day – not a clock in sight, so you literally lose track of time – and fabulous shows and spectacles don’t stop until dawn breaks. Finding some peace and quiet in the never ending sound of clattering coins and bright neon lights seems totally impossible… Think again: Sunset Park is the largest park in Las Vegas, a stunning oasis in the oppressive Mojave Desert, where temperatures during summer can soar up to an average of 40°C. Spread your pick-nick blanket, get out

your fishing gear, put on your trainers or climb the saddle: re-energize in the 120 hectares of Sunset Park. Bear in mind though that Sunset Park still is in Vegas, so still the occasional venue for events and festivals. BOMB PARTIES Had enough rest? Or do you need something to keep you busy before that breath-taking circus show or Celine Dion concert in the evening? Believe it or not, plenty of interesting museums around to kill some time. Let’s be fair: the Mob Museum is entirely dedicated to organised crime, be it behind bars. Filled with fascinating facts and trinkets with a criminal past, even a replica of the Valentine’s Day Massacre’s blood stained wall – you even get to take a seat on the electric chair. Now how is that for a selfie? The National Atomic Testing Museum revs it up even more, by blowing you away – pun intended – in a simulated explosion

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The Strip

Mob museum

in the Ground Zero Theatre. The museum’s name refers to the over 1,000 nuclear test bombs that were detonated in the Nevada Desert in the fifties, with mushroom clouds visible for miles around, also from Las Vegas… What’s more: in those days the rooftop terraces of some hotels became the place to be for a good old ‘bomb party’ or even the election of Miss Atomic Bomb. ACTION MAN

Sunset Park

Convention Center

Motor Speedway

suppliers of energy won from gas, water, sun and coal. The Hoover Dam, just 48 km away, is quite possibly the most impressive to visit. This technical wonder made out of 3 million m3 of concrete feeds 17 generators that provide electricity to 3 American states. After your visit, why not wind down on the banks of Lake Mead, a water reservoir offering the perfect spot to watch a mesmerising sundown whilst you see the millions of lights of Las Vegas start to work their magic and add the perfect sparkle to end your stay.

Time for some action then. Do you feel the need to decompress after that stressful trade fair? In the Wreck Room, after having been safely wrapped up in a protective suit, you can bash a room full of stuff to smithereens with a baseball bat or iron bar. If we have to believe what the website says, you’ll feel totally liberated afterwards.


Las Vegas is a popular destination for trade fairs, congresses and other events. Apart from the centrally located Las Vegas Convention Centre on the Strip, most event spaces are to be found in the large hotels.

But you can also go for style: ever dreamt of a ride on a gleaming Corvette or fancy Lamborghini? The place for you then is the famous Las Vegas Motor Speedway, a Formula 1 circuit, where you can race around in the (rental) car of your choice. Dig even more adrenaline? Go to Dig This Las Vegas, where you can attack the desert soil with a bulldozer or digger. A course in trapeze, a stunt plane flight above the desert? Whatever you can think of, someone in Las Vegas already dreamt it up – as long as it’s extraordinary and fun.

Every year almost 22,000 meetings and conventions take place in Sin City, such as multimedia fairs or the ‘International Pizza Expo’. Currently the Las Vegas Convention Centre is adding 130,000 m² to its existing exposition space.

In 2018, for the fifth consecutive time, the World Travel Awards awarded Las Vegas best ‘Meeting & Conference’ destination in the world.

CES, the largest tech trade fair in the world, was held in Vegas at the start of the year. Smart speakers, the newest high-end televisions, 360° cameras or autonomous cars: at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas over 4,000 exhibitors showcased their newest products and gadgets to almost 180,000 visitors.

ENERGY LEVELS UP Air conditioning, neon billboards, gambling arcades and 150,000 hotel rooms… Las Vegas has become an energydevouring monolith that can only survive thanks to 6,000

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Exhibiting from one country to another Q&A with Larry Kulchawik What are the four main differences when exhibiting in the U.S.A. vs Europe? I have often stated that the difference in U.S.A. vs Europe is ‘Telling’ vs ‘Selling’. The open space design style, which is often a requirement under American standards, encourages a ‘telling’ environment where selling takes place later. In Europe, exhibit design favors a more closed environment with a private meeting room where selling is more easily achieved in private. The four major exhibit design differences: Europe



The use of a raised floor


a thick carpet

Larry Kulchawik

The inclusion of a ‘bar’ area



The use of simple graphics


busy graphics


Regulation differences: any dimension of space size


depth/height restrictions with 10 ft. space increments

Starting as an exhibit designer, Larry Kulchawik has spent his entire career in the exhibit industry for the past 43 years. He has worked for three of the leading exhibit companies in the USA in management and sales with a focus on international trade show marketing. He served on the boards of many industry associations (CEIR, OSPI, WTC) and as president for IFES (International Federation of Exposition Services) and EDPA (Exhibit Designer and Producers Association).

"There is no right way, there is no wrong way, there is only a different way.”

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What advice would you give to a European company planning to exhibit in the U.S.A.? Of all countries in the world, the U.S. has the greatest differences and regulations. My advice is to select a U.S. supplier partner to work with. They will know best about the regulations in their region. This advice also applies to Americans planning to exhibit abroad. What has been your experience with beMatrix and how would you describe their value to others? During my term on the IFES board of directors, we selected beMatrix to build our stand at Euroshop. During the set up, I met both Stefaan Decroos and Edwin Van der Vennet on their hands and knees installing the floor and back walls of our IFES exhibit. This was my first introduction to beMatrix. Their passion and dedication to meet our deadline for the stand opening has left me with a positive lasting impression of beMatrix. How do you see the future of the exposition industry and its effect on exhibit design? As the world grows closer together as a single marketplace, the differences between country styles and regulations will

become similar from region to region. Maybe even the concept of ‘drayage’? The venues, show organizers, and exhibitor associations will drive this. Exhibitor strategies and tactics will grow to work similar from country to country. The objective of exhibitors is not to develop cleaver design, but to grow their sales and marketshare from region to region. Design and engagement tactics do matter, but in the end- what did I achieve as a result of this event? For now, face to face marketing remains to be a powerful marketing method to drive sales. In todays world of internet and social marketing the need for face to face has diminished slightly, but I feel that the element of emotion through human contact will never go away. As exhibit designers, we must fully understand what drives people to attend any trade show and/or conference. In my opinion there are four influencers. Educational sessions, networking with peers, site location, and the exhibit show floor. The exhibit is not the main attraction, but serves as a value added component to encourage attendance. As a show organizer, each component must compliment the other to attract attendance and steer visitors to the show floor. In my opinion, the exhibit component offers the greatest impact, but is not the main reason why qualified visitors attend an event.

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Over the past 15 years, exhibit design has changed: •

Exhibit design now blends lightweight exhibit systems with custom components, fabric, theatrical lighting, and AV technology to create an environment and provides an ‘experience’. The exhibit design compliments the exhibitors marketing strategy for added sales or a creating a stronger impression on potential buyers.

Exhibit design changed from ‘structures’ to ‘theatrical props’. The use of technology, lightings, and personal engagement tactics now plays a stronger role than ever before.

Exhibitors are investing in what the exhibit will do, and not in owning the architecture. Renting/Leasing now has become a more practical solution for exhibiting.

Today, exhibiting at conferences is both a local and international marketing strategy. The ability of exhibit design to be effective in all regions of the world has much to do with the experience of exhibit suppliers and their experiences abroad. International connectivity is now a requirement and not a value added offering from exhibit suppliers.

© Exhibit Fair International (USA)

Why did you decide to write a book about trade show differences internationally? After 40 years of working internationally and doing trade shows, I felt strongly about sharing the many experiences I encountered. Being a president of IFES, and working with international exhibit suppliers, I reached out to the many exhibit companies I had met over the years and asked the question- how should I plan my exhibit and behave when exhibiting in your country? Surprisingly, I received a response from 30 country friends pretty quickly. With this information I prepared a common format to share info about local venues, top events, regulations, design methods, labor issues, and cultural differences for exhibitors when exhibiting abroad. Although focusing on trade show events, the book will appeal to anyone who markets anything in any of 45 different countries. The cultural differences are the most valuable point to understand and respect before marketing abroad. We tend to see things from our own point of view. This can be dangerous. The theme of the book- There is no Right way, there is no Wrong way, there is only a Different way. Know and respect what is different and you are on your way to success.

© Hamilton Exhibits (USA)

Book tip: Trade Shows from One Country to the Next The new book 'Trade Shows from One Country to the Next (second edition)' outlines the venues, top trade shows, rules, regulations, exhibit differences, and cultural styles to recalculate your image for 45 countries. Presenting your products and services internationally requires a recalculation of your thinking and marketing approach at global trade shows. This book is a simple guidebook for smooth sailing when exhibiting and communicating globally. Available on Amazon. Or contact Mr. Kulchawik directly at

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beMatrix, headquartered in Roeselare (Belgium), has 3 production sites and strives to closely support their clientele worldwide via their international sales network, with divisions in the USA, UK, Scandinavia, Australia and Asia. We aim to offer stand builders and their clients the best possible service, internationally and, wherever possible, locally also. As a manufacturer, beMatrix relies on the expertise of its customers – the stand builders – to create dynamic and striking stands using the beMatrix frames, accessories and LEDskin®.

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Worldwide bePartner network

net wor


The bePartner network brings together real beMatrix frame system ambassadors, each with their own expertise: stand building, prints, LEDskin®, rental, double deck…

beManiacs in the spotlight: internal sales 'beManiac': A person who has an excessive enthusiasm or desire for beMatrix. Not only does beMatrix continuously invest in the quality of our products and services, but also in people. Our aim is to have the right people in the right place. Our employees are proud to carry the ‘beManiac’ label. In this edition, we are happy to introduce to you our internal sales team. Every day, they support our customers with price requests, commercial and technical questions. At the same time, they are a great help to our account managers.

Sébastien beManiac since 2015 Hobbies: taking walks in nature and carpentry Lynn Jolien beManiac since 2016 Likes reading and puzzles

beManiac since 2014 Turned her hobby into a second job: nail stylist

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Jan beManiac since 2018 Annelies beManiac since 2017 Enjoys gymnastics, tennis and taking her dog Cody out for a walk

DIY guy who loves to watch sports

Ann-Sophie beManiac since 2015

Dominiek beManiac since 2013

Hobbies: playing tennis & being a language teacher

America lover and karate fanatic

Stephanie beManiac since 2018 Padel & bodypump enthusiast

Niels beManiac sinds 2018 Runner, cyclist and footballer in his spare time

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And then there was light Lighting is rather important when you want to create a certain ambiance. Indoors, natural light is being replaced by artificial light, so you best opt for fittings and light hues that highlight colours, materials and textures. So you can stay on track with what’s happening in the world of lighting, we list the most important trends and novelties. LASER


LED lighting no longer is optional; it has become a given. LED indeed has many advantages, with being eco-friendly at the top of the rankings. The lifecycle of LED lights exceeds halogen bulbs by 25 times and because they do not contain any mercury or other heavy metal, they are easier to recycle. They also do not require any time to warm up and their light does not fade any colour, since there is no UV involved.

“What was the level of CO2 emissions to produce and transport this light?” – up to ten years ago, salespeople didn’t know what hit them with this question.

Even so, LED lighting no longer is the future… Science continuously explores other options and, more than likely, laser will be the next step. Compared to LED, laser generates 1,000 times more light while consuming two thirds less energy. Still far-fetched? Today already, some cars come with laser headlights. In a couple of years, we will probably be buying television screens and smartphones with laser diodes.

Today, it has become almost mainstream. Manufacturers actually love to launch recycled fittings for instance, such as lamp shades made out of felt from recycled plastic bottles. The ecological footprint is minimal, the acoustic function maximised. Or how about fittings out of recycled cardboard, used fluorescent tubes, old toys, plastic waste… no idea is too crazy. Eco-design certainly is the rising star in the world of lighting. And the fun part is: with a dose of guts and a dash of creativity, you can create your own fitting, straight from the civic amenity site.

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© Delta Light © Delta Light

FLEXIBLE Most people prefer the freedom to position a light wherever they like. A standalone light you can just place anywhere. A pendulum on the other hand has limitations, since you need to hang it where the electricity source is. Today, plug & play systems are all the rage: hanging different lights in different spots, all linked to one central point. You decide yourself how long you want the cables to be and the actual shades can be all different shapes and sizes, allowing you to mix and match your own personal light system, totally customised to your unique taste. A mix and match of colours, shapes and dimensions, for the ultimate eyecatcher in your interior. Flexibility in colour and shape still is hot. PURE Industrial and robust rustic interiors are by no means bygone trends. Lights with a concrete look and the use of pure materials, such as raw steel or iron, fit that bill just right, with even rusty steel being used. However, creating a warm and cosy feel at home also remains a priority in most interiors, which is why you see a lot of wood being used: a great contrast with sturdy and rough materials and one of the ultimate ways to inject some atmosphere into your home. Wooden lights are real trend setters, with a design that balances modern minimalism and a classic chandelier.

SAM LIGHT Illuminating walls and/or products becomes a simple task thanks the new beMatrix SAM light. This revolving LED light truly stands out, thanks to its minimalistic design and diverse ways in which they can be mounted on the frame construction. The modular nature of temporary constructions requires simple lighting solutions, fast to install, suitable for all kinds of stands, large or small and for any type of lighting (accent, atmospheric or general lighting). The biggest advantage this design spot offers, is its ‘2 in 1’ principle: one single switch allows you to change from cold to warm light, a choice you can make either during or after assembly – and which you can still adjust afterwards. Moreover, the integrated LED modules revolve 340°, so a surface can be lit up from any angle.

© Delta Light

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beInspired Inspiring ways to illuminate your stand Ingenious lighting not only plays an important role in interior design, the way your stand or event is illuminated can really make that all-important difference and be a determining factor in your visitors’ experience. The creative ways our clients combine the beMatrix frame system with lighting says it all. Novel ways in which lighting is used, not just to light up your stand, is ever so important to differentiate yourself from others. Below we take you through some examples of stands with creative lighting ideas.

beMatrix frames in the picture LEDLAB designs and manufactures top of the range LED applications. Their stand at the ‘Interieur’ trade fair in Kortrijk (BE), home to several lighting specialists, was the brainchild of stand builder Spacebox. Their idea was to install LED strips on bare beMatrix frames.

© Spacebox (BE)

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An extra dimension through colour

© Total Expo Ltd. (IE)

Pure, green and light Being creative with lighting can already suffice to add that ‘extra touch’ to a stand. Take Total-e for instance with this pure beMatrix stand at Festivak, combining greenery and light. © Total-e (BE)

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One of the best examples beMatrix allows for real creative solutions comes from our bePartner • build Total Expo. They developed ‘Glowing Edges’, a new product that is fully compatible with the frame system to turn a stand in a true eye catcher. This system uses programmable LED lights mounted as covers on the frames with big holes. Colours can be customised in line with the client’s corporate identity, adding an extra dimension to the stand concept.


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beInspired Specials The beMatrix frame system allows for any kind of shape, contour or construction; anything is possible and feasible. Should a certain frame not be available in our standard portfolio, we will simply manufacture a made-to-measure solution. The latter however do not have to be a one-off investment to never be used again. Why not integrate them in a next project and get most out of the advantages of a modular system, for instance? It’s a great way to retain your competitive edge! A number of our clients already took this advice to heart – check out these ideas:

Trapezoid frames For the Triumph stand at the Brussels Motor Show, stand builder Choup’s - Silver Partners came up with this minimalist design. The trapezoid frames used for part of the stand most certainly grab your attention immediately. A great way to prove that adding a couple of specials to a stand with mainly standard frames generates exceptional results.

© Choup's - SIlver Partners (BE)


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Virgin Media - Sushi Bar For Virgin Media, stand builder Enigma created a new generation of kiosks. The first draught was then elaborated into a structural 3D drawing, consisting of mainly frames that are part of the standard range. Only for the half curves at the top and bottom of the kiosk a special frame was manufactured, turning the initial idea into the real thing. © Enigma (UK)

Rob Brooks, director and co-founder of Modex Exhibitions Ltd (bePartner · build):

"As a design and build company who works with a fairly standard set of beMatrix frames, it’s always good to know that the team in Roeselare can turn around specials in a fairly tight time scale should our clients demand it. We are often confronted with design demands that in the past would have necessitated a bespoke traditional build solution. These days we just send over a sketch to beMatrix and wait for the elements to be delivered. It’s clean, simple, and more importantly, it’s sawdust and paint free !"

e Pa





© Modex Exhibitions (UK)

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Sustainability and charity go hand in hand In the last edition of our beMagazine, you could read all about how we at beMatrix invest in sustainability. Since we are a dynamic company with an international action radius, we deem it important to promote sustainable entrepreneurship outside of the company walls as well. Every year, a set percentage of the profit is allocated to investments in national and international projects, carefully selected and always aligned with our philosophy. Wherever possible, we engage our employees in the project or set up an information campaign related to the project’s topic. Apart from some smaller initiatives, this year we mainly invested in high impact forestation in Aalter and the construction of 3 water kiosks in Ituri (DR Congo).

Forestation in the Ganzeveld area in Aalter (Belgium) Forests have a predominant impact on climate change: they filter the air, produce oxygen, help regulate temperatures and store water in the soil. With a forestation rate of merely 11%, Flanders (the northern region of Belgium) has the least amount of forest in Europe. That should change. With its ‘Bos voor Iedereen’ campaign, Natuurpunt takes action. Natuurpunt is an independent Belgian volunteer organisation which sets out to protect vulnerable and endangered nature in Flanders. To that aim they purchase land and ensure fully-fledged forests can grow. These purchases are not cheap, but do guarantee that these forests will remain intact in the long term. beMatrix chose to support the Ganzeveld forest extension project in Aalter. In the last edition of our magazine we explained we would sponsor 1 square meter of forest every time 10 1 meter x 2.5 meter aluminium frames were sold. However, with the support of the Flemish government, we could change that target to each 5 frames sold. The Ganzeveld forest can now be expanded with 16,000 m² of extra trees in 2018! Since we are strong advocates of ‘a healthy mind in a healthy body’, the beMatrix team and the Natuurpunt volunteers actually helped planting the sponsored trees on Sunday November, 25th.

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Building 3 water kiosks in Ituri (DR Congo) The province of Ituri is located in mountainous North-eastern Congo and counts approximately 1.5 million inhabitants. To this day, 1 million of the people living there have no access to clean drinking water. Bad hygiene conditions and lack of sanitation, together with polluted drinking water, still are the main causes of disease and diarrhoea, resulting in a high infant mortality rate. Via Belgian organisation ‘Entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs’ we got acquainted with the water kiosk project in Ituri (DR Congo), launched by Protos. This NGO reinforces correct, sustainable and collaborative water management and water consumption in a number of countries (Belgium, Haiti, West-Africa…). The goal of the water kiosk project in Ituri (DR Congo) is to expand existing drink water systems and to professionalise the water kiosk outlets, a kind of drink water shops run by private individuals, putting in place a franchise-like model. This project will improve health of females, males and children alike and will contribute to economic activity (less waiting times, less absenteeism because of illness). Thanks to the support of beMatrix, Protos can now build 3 new water kiosks in Ituri. All of our employees will be made aware also of the global water issues and the need for change in water consumption.

© Protos

Sustainability study Curious as we are, we contacted an external expert to compare the level of CO2 emissions of both the aluminium frame system as wooden frames (calculated using the Bilan Carbone® method). This took into account the production, transport, deployment and end-of-life phase. You can find the result of this study in the infographic on the next page.

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Greenhouse gas emission of frames


14,000 12,000 10,000


kg CO2e/1000 frame uses



6,000 4,000 2,000 0

beMatrix frame + textile infill

beMatrix frame + forex infill

wooden frame


Hook and loop tape





Supporting pin

The best option is the reusable beMatrix frame with an infill in textile.

The infill and the tape are the components with the largest influence.

Improving the reusability of the infill can significantly reduce the emission.

How did we conduct this research? The study of the carbon footprint has been done following the methodology Bilan CarboneÂŽ

An aluminium frame can in average be used 200 times while a wooden frame can only be used 4 times in average.

The calculation has been done for 1,000 frame uses. Therefore you need 5 aluminium or 250 wooden frames.

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No randomness Did you ever wonder why a sheet of A4 paper measures exactly 210 mm by 297 mm? Why a manhole cover is circular? Or why a stop sign always has the shape of an octagon? The design behind these everyday objects is by no means coincidence, however, far less common knowledge are the reasons behind these designs.

A(4)-paper format A piece of A4 paper might seem to be the furthest away from a ‘design object’ because it is just a piece of paper. However, the dimensions don’t allow any room for any randomness. A piece of A4 indeed is verging on genius. The standardised A format for paper was developed by German engineer Dr Walter Porstmann in 1922 and works upon the mathematical formula in which the length/ width ratio is equal to √2. It is the only ratio, which, when a piece of paper is folded in half height-wise, still retains the same proportions.

Manhole It comes in many shapes: square, rectangular, triangular… But the shape most firmly anchored in our collective psyche and the one most often used around the world is the circular manhole cover. You might think it is a question of weight. Being a very heavy object, it would be easier to roll (and therefore push along) a circular manhole. In reality, behind this almost imperceptible detail is an elementary design that is perfectly adapted to its function: the cover is circular because its geometric shape will always prevent it from falling through its own hole. A rectangular one, for instance, could fall through diagonally.

Stop sign At the start of road signage implementation, the more angular the sign, the greater the danger. Gradually, signs became standardised into three shapes – the circle, the triangle and the square – leaving only one octagon: the stop sign. This specificity makes it instantly recognisable throughout the world and in all types of weather. It can also be identified from the back by motorists on the other side of the road. Regarded as one of the most important signs in the Highway Code, the panel has a unique shape that has made it an icon. No particular language skills are needed: its design alone, which relies more on the shape than on the pictogram, means it is immediately recognisable by the greatest number.

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Pantone 152 – safety orange From traffic cones, lifebuoy & life jackets, NASA astronaut’s suit, the plane’s black box… All these objects are the same colour, so that they can be seen as easily as possible. Safety orange is the colour that stands out most clearly in the natural environment. It is the complete opposite of the green of the forests and the blue of the sky and sea. It is a colour that is rarely, if ever, seen in nature. Its colour code has been defined by the Pantone reference 152, is used all over the world. It is an interesting exercise to stroll around town bearing this detail in mind: if an object has to be readily identifiable, it is orange.

Pasta Ergonomics are aimed at increasing efficiency and ease-of-use, and what better manifestation of this science than pasta? In each type of pasta, shape follows function. A given shape of pasta can either collect the sauce in a special way, cook in a certain time, or distribute heat more effectively. For example, penne are tubular in shape to help contain less liquid sauces. They are grooved to promote even cooking across the entire surface and cut at a 45° angle to give a larger opening than a perpendicular cut, thus allowing pieces of meat to enter. In the world of pasta, what would appear to be an aesthetic choice always has an ergonomic explanation. This is the reason why each shape of pasta corresponds to a certain sauce.

Source: ‘No randomness’ by Oscar Lhermitte. No randomness, a design exhibition curated by London based designer Oscar Lhermitte, explains the design logic of a selection of everyday objects.

beMatrix b62 frame: no coincidence either! As the name implies, all dimensions of the b62 frame system have been based on the perfect 62 × 62 mm matrix. Width, length and height of stands that have been designed and built using these frames always are multiples of 62. Because of this, each construction always is a perfect fit, in all directions and in any kind of combination; even for a corner set-up, perfect connections are guaranteed. Rather brilliant, don’t you think? This logical matrix by no means affects total design freedom. Sharp or rounded corners, angled and slanting walls, setbacks or T connectors, arches and curves… anything is possible.

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Tasty and healthy food at the trade fair Do’s-and-don’ts Whilst setting up a trade fair, a quick snack is an easy way to silence that rumbling tummy. Such snack, unfortunately, is hardly ever tasty or healthy. To get to grips with how to eat tasty and healthy food whilst being hard at work and without it becoming too cumbersome, we consulted nutritionist Lynn De Merlier. When you lead a physically active life, you need a sturdy meal. Right or wrong? Yes and no. You will need food rich in calories, without your blood sugar levels continuously going off the charts between too low and too high, since that is exactly what causes you to feel depleted. Unfortunately, plenty of people seem to think sturdy food equals fries, pizza or toasties… all of which are easy to make and really everyone eats. What’s wrong with a pizza or croque monsieur? They are by no means balanced foods, with relatively too much sugars, fat and in most cases saturated fats: of all the fats, these are the most harmful. Like the cheese and mayonnaise in a toasties for example, or full fat cream in ice cream. Eating such a snack from time to time of course won’t hurt you, but you wouldn’t want it to become a daily habit. As a stand builder, it is far from ideal to eat only this kind of meal. What would be a good alternative? A good breakfast is key, literally the start and foundation of the rest of your day. It should provide you with sufficient energy to get you through the morning, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. If however you don’t take in plenty of vitamins, carbohydrates and proteins, or rather eat a load of refined sugars, you will get tired quicker and finding it harder to stay focussed. A dip like that will have you munching away on candy or another unhealthy snack again… Eating a balanced breakfast isn’t even hard. Take oatmeal for instance, a true energy bomb, free of sugar and known for their high levels of fibres and complex carbohydrates – which are fuelling your energy. A plate filled with oats, milk and banana is a sure-fire way to start your day. Eggs are a great idea as well. Bursting with proteins of top quality, they contain at least ten essential ingredients, such as iron and vitamin D, making the bones stronger. Eggs are ever so easy and fast to prepare: boiled or fried as an

omelette, to which you can add some peppers or tomatoes for extra fibres and vitamins. It’s lunchtime… and don’t we know it. Try to eat at set times as much as possible; that way your body knows when to expect the next meal, which helps to curb those hunger pangs. Don’t eat too heavy a lunch, to make sure you won’t get hit by that afternoon dip. A healthy lunch contains proteins, fats and carbohydrates, all correctly balanced. Proteins make sure you can remain focussed and feel full up for longer, whereas fats and carbohydrates provide a stable supply of energy to see you through to dinner. Grilled vegetables with quinoa, a couple of wholegrain chicken or smoked mackerel sandwiches and a large bowl of soup all are great lunch options. Are snacks in between allowed? Of course. An ideal snack is a rice waffle: it fills you up, keeps your blood sugar level stable and you can in fact eat quite a bit of them. Fruit and vegetables make you feel full without all the calories, because again, you can eat them all guilt free. Apples, pears, carrots… all easy to prepare beforehand, without even the need to store them in a cool place. They are the ideal in-between snack. Why not dried or in a juice, just to shake things up a little? Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts also are just fab: charged with good fats and proteins – as long as you stick with the unsalted and unsweetened variety. In case you go out for dinner in the evening: what should you pay attention to? In the evening you best opt for a light meal, such as fish or a vegetarian stir-fry. The slow sugars in vegetables will provide more energy and will help you go to sleep, another plus when you have to get up early in the morning for the next busy day. Just so we all know: which guilty pleasure is definitely allowed? That would be chocolate containing 75% cacao. Cacao is full of antioxidants and beneficial to healthy blood pressure. And more than anything: super tasty!

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Expo centres with eventful architecture By no means should you automatically associate event halls or conference centres with boring, concrete boxes, built with solely practical purposes in mind – namely the need for square meters –, rather than with an exciting array of shapes. That image is in the past, since these days, event buildings are designed as eventful explorations in modern architecture. In this edition, we take you on a visit to the Lotus Building, a more than interesting example of how an event hall can become pure architectural art.

Lotus Building, Wujin (China) If ever you find yourself in Wujin, in the eastern part of China, you just need to see the artificial lake in the town centre. Not to hop on a boat, but to let yourself become enthralled by a wonderful piece of architecture: the Lotus Building. The Lotus Building certainly is a feast to the eyes, with its grandeur, its captivating allure and originality. It houses the city’s planning bureau as well as several event halls and congress centres. Its name and shape have been derived from a flowering lotus in its three stages of growth, from a small bud to a full flower. The Australian Studio 505 designed the building in 2013, as an add-on to existing facilities below the artificial lake from which the lotus arises… Visitors actually enter the building at the lowest level, in a cathedral-like space dominated by a spectacular chandelier which bares close resemblance to a stamen. Quite uncanny as well is the fact that the source of the building’s temperature control system are geothermic poles installed in the lake. And at night? A light show with natural hues turns the Lotus Building in a dazzling art attraction. Not to be missed!

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Photography: John Gollings

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From A to Z Working with beMatrix means counting on continuous support by a professional experienced team, that synchronises its thinking with yours in all phases of your project. It starts with the design: your drafts are translated into a technical drawing, with detailed parts lists and clear assembly drawings that make you save valuable time during the building. A render is also made of the beMatrix structure, so you get a first impression of the possible end result.



e Pa

Project in the spotlight: Špica International @ IFSEC 2018, London Design & build-up by bePartner ¡ build Leseno (SI).

Original design


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3D drawing beMatrix

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The result

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Š Leseno (SI)

The beMatrix team takes the floor

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The Le Cornu side tables, of which we own a big and a small size one, have added a stylish touch to our lounge for a couple of years now. They’re called Autumn Leaves, and these designer leaves have been almost everywhere in our house already; mainly in the lounge downstairs, but also next to our rocking chair in the bedroom, where they now live. They are timeless pieces of furniture and their pointy shape in fact breaks the straight lines in our minimalist interior. The designer also lives in Wevelgem (BE) and his tables were the first items we bought for our home. Those kind of details add an extra dimension and emotion to an object.



Glass has to be one of the oldest and most versatile building materials ever. In ancient times already, glass was used and, rather than just functional use, creative artefacts were made out of glass as well. The diversity of this material, colours, structures, its rich allure… plenty of reasons why I am so fond of this element. I got to know Sabine only recently. She immediately impressed me with her talent and passion. Every spare moment she has, she spends in her atelier. For five years now, she has been applying the Tiffany technique – you can in fact really see the way her style evolves artistically. She likes being commissioned, and most of the time, she has ‘carte blanche’. First she scans what her clients like, what a certain concept could be, what symbolic meaning they would like to see reflected, before she starts the actual design process. If she makes her own pieces, inspiration seems to simply flow. She can for instance wake up at night and come up with an idea, which she will then elaborate on later. Sources of inspiration can be nature, sometimes a project with another artist, even music. Sabine Van Eynde / SeyeS Glass Art Beekstraat 1, 8470 Gistel, Belgium

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Rather than a chore, cooking to me is pure downtime. A great meal is a feast for your taste buds not only because of the recipe, but also thanks to the best ingredients, which I love to buy at the Lokaalmarkt market in Roeselare. Every Friday afternoon you have a large choice of local produce, straight from the field to your table… the proof most certainly is in the tasting. The market takes place in the old Sint-Amands church, which gives the whole experience an extra dimension. Should I not feel like cooking, I just go to the bar for a small bite. My ideal start to the weekend! Lokaalmarkt Roeselare - each Friday between 14h00 and 19h00 Sint-Amands church - De Coninckplein, 8800 Roeselare, Belgium



Li O Lait has to be my favourite coffee bar and is a must when I want to escape the crowds during a day out in Bruges. This coffee bar is situated in an old town house typical to Bruges, where you’re guaranteed to be welcomed by warmth, a great atmosphere, some nice tunes and that fantastic smell of freshly grounded coffee. Take your time to read the newspaper or have a chat over a top quality slow coffee/latte and a homemade brownie or Pastéis de nata. My visit in Bruges isn’t complete without popping in, on my own, with the kids or some friends. A great hang-out, highly recommended to everyone. Evelien


Dweerstraat 30, 8000 Bruges, Belgium

Even when I was a child still, I already loved shoes. Today, I must own about 42 pairs. This taste for shoes did pose one issue though: finding enough space to store them all. I once came across a massive shoe cupboard shaped like a shoe box, with enough space for about 20 pairs. That inspired me to build something similar myself, so I did some research and after just a week, my home made shoe cupboard was ready, based on the original ‘Air Jordan’ shoe box. A quote I find really fitting actually, is this one: “I make shoe contact before eye contact”.

Cheikh SALES

Calendar JANUARY 2019 15-16/01 Best of Events, Dortmund (DE)

FEBRUARY 2019 05-08/02 ISE, Amsterdam (NL)

MAY 2019 14-19/05 Experimental Marketing Summit 2019, Las Vegas (USA)

JUNE 2019

13-15/02 Rema Days, Poznan (PL)

12-14/06 InfoComm, Orlando (Florida, USA)

25-27/02 ExhibitorLive, Las Vegas (USA)


beMatrix Summer Academy (HQ)

26-27/02 International Confex, London (UK)


beMatrix Summer Academy (USA)

For more information about future events, visit

Colofon beMagazine is published by beMatrix – Wijnendalestraat 174, B-8800 Roeselare – T. +32 (0)51 20 07 50 –

EDITION January 2019

EDITOR IN CHIEF & LAY-OUT Magalie Urbain –

CONTRIBUTORS TO THIS EDITION Anneleen, Annelies, Ann-Sophie, Cheikh, Dominiek, Evelien, Jan, Jolien, Leslie, Lynn, Magalie, Niels, Pieters, Sébastien, Stephanie, Xavier (beMatrix) – Uwe Friebe (Artist MesseService und Bau) – Steven Van Belleghem – Larry Kulchawik

PHOTOGRAPHY Jesse De Meulenaere – John Gollings Photography – Koen Therry (beMatrix) – Lenzer – Shutterstock – Tom Lefevere (FotoFever)

ILLUSTRATOR Phavin (Designer + Illustrator)

DISCLAIMER This magazine’s content has been diligently put together. Information subject to changes. beMagazine is copyrighted. Should you want to copy or use articles for commercial use, please contact us via marketing@beMatrix.

re!nventing stand building systems

beMatrix head-office Belgium Wijnendalestraat 174 B - 8800 Roeselare T. +32 51 20 07 50

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