Rotor Live 2023 - can the glory return?
After three years forced break Rotor Live will return in 2023. This is definitely something we and the whole hobby need, just that's another question it will be able to get back its original glory.
The Rotor Live in Iffezheim, Germany has always been the most important event of the year from business point of view on the whole world, because this is the only place where not just the pilots and demos could be seen, instead, it has been a proper expo of the RC heli hobby including scale helicopters, components, technologies, everything you may need within this hobby. Usually manufacturers scheduled their greatest announcements to this event.
The the disaster in form of Covid restrictions kicked the door on the event in 2020. Unfortunately organisers did not respond appropriately to it on time, and the Rotor Live 2020 was cancelled just three days before the event itself. This belated decision damaged the reputation of the event very badly, because companies, especially distant companies relocated their staff, team people and everything for this event into Germany when this happened, consequently they suffered a big financial loss. Despite that organisers can only be blamed partially for the situation occurred then (they believed until the last minute the event could be taken place before the real lockdown kicks in), consequences are obvious by now, although current economic environment can also be a reason why the wider international interest of the event is so low at the moment. It has to be accepted, this time the Rotor Live cannot be as big as it was before, but this event is still definitely much more than nothing.
Rotor Live published the list of expected exhibitors for 2023 couple of days ago. This is not the final list of course, but it can be assumed to be close to the final version. Companies have to have a plan and a decision about an event this early. The following companies expected to be at Rotor Live 2023:
BGC Aero, freakware, Genspow GmbH, Helikopter Baumann, Heli-Professional AG, Horizon Hobby, JetCat, KONTRONIK, KST-Servos, Mikado Model Helicopters, Pichler Modellbau, PSG-Dynamics, RC-Hangar 15, RC Helicopter Service, SAB Group, Savox/rc-dome, Scorpion Power System, SMG-Helischule, Sorotec GmbH, Schwanheimer Industriekleber, Vario Helicopter, Xnovamotors, YGE, Spirit Systems, World-of-Heli
These companies above are all based in the region, mostly Germans, very few Swiss, and SAB from Italy (closer to Iffezheim than the farthest point of Germany), the Spirit Systems from Czechia, and BGC Aero from France. Scorpion Power Systems is from Hong Kong officially, but everybody knows the connection between Mikado and Scorpion, so we can inarguably consider Scorpion as a Germany linked company too. Technically Rotor Live became a regional event rather than what it was: a large international expo. Although in terms of political and financial times March is quite far from now. It can be better, but the energy crisis and its consequences can affect it negatively too.
However, probably we won't see XLPower, Egodrift, ManiaX and other distant companies, and Hacker Motor, Helicoach, MTTEC, bavarianDEMON, Miniature Aircraft and few other previously presented local businesses are also not on the list. Tronhelicopters, Goosky as new companies are not listed either. Of course, this does not mean, they are not going to be represented by a dealer, a distributor or any other ways, just simply they will not be emphasised as much as in the previous years. The spectrum of the whole industry presented there seems much narrower than in 2019.
Is this because of the loss of trust or other circumstances? Just the companies staying away can tell that. But it's a fact, the whole hobby really needs this event and its returning to life. Visitors certainly will be there. How many? Nobody can expect as much as in the pre-pandemic times, but definitely more than anywhere else. This is because the scale helicopter flying, which is heavily represented at Rotor Live can involve much more people than any performance helicopter event. Hopefully we will not be disappointed at all.