The organizers of the Geneva Motor Show have decided to abandon next year’s event and want to sell.
The international auto show was due to take place in March 2021, but the company behind it saw weak demand from car brands and exhibitors.
This year’s event was canceled along with a number of other auto shows around the world due to the coronavirus.
The announcement raises questions about the future of such events globally, as car brands rethink their strategies.
“The automotive sector is going through a difficult phase and exhibitors need time to recover from the effects of the pandemic,” said the Committee and Council of the Foundation “Salon International de l’Automobile”, which organizes the international auto show.
Most exhibitors at the event who participated in a survey said they “probably would not participate” in a show next year, organizers added.
This year’s Geneva Motor Show was canceled in February, just days before its opening. It regularly attracts more than half a million visitors.
Other auto shows have also been ruled out this year, including those planned for New York and Detroit, amid health concerns. Car brands use these events to debut their latest models and unveil concept cars.
Instead, they adopted their own online releases during virus blocks and travel restrictions.
On Monday, the organizers of the Geneva Motor Show also announced plans to sell the show’s assets to owners of the Palexpo conference center in Geneva, where the event is being held, calling it “the preferred solution”.
The move will now put the spotlight on other car shows planned for next year in major cities, due to its cost and huge logistical efforts compared to online launches.
The Geneva International Motor Show is Switzerland’s largest public event and has an economic impact of 200 million Swiss francs (£ 171m; $ 210m) per year, according to organizers.