Once again, international representatives of the publishing industry met at ppi Media’s Open Days to discuss current trends in the publishing industry. This year’s event was characterized by a range of dedicated presentations dealing with the topic of digitization and exploring what established publishing companies can learn from start-ups. This year’s ppi Open Days took place at the Atlantic Hotel in Kiel on June 4-5, 2018.
It is a fixed date in the calendar of many leading figures of the German and international publishing industry: the annual ppi Open Days are an established industry event with exclusive presentations and numerous prominent speakers. This year’s event was opened by the Lord Mayor of Kiel, Dr. Ulf Kämpfer, whose introductory speech highlighted the importance of Kiel as a business location for IT companies and described the city’s digitization activities – for example the Digital Week Kiel, which takes place again in 2018. ppi Media also benefits from this development, as it means that more and more highly qualified staff can be recruited in the Kiel region.
Digitization, business innovation and start-up mentality
Many of the presentations focused on the question of how large and medium-sized companies can meet the challenges posed by the digitization through purposeful investments and by using start-up methods. Experienced and successful experts like Philipp Depiereux, founder and CEO of digital consulting agency etventure, and business angel Alexander Eck, highlighted different aspects of this topic. CEO Jan Kasten and the two heads of our business innovation department, Corinna Coverly and Manuel Scheyda, also gave insights into the digitization processes at ppi Media itself, and shared success stories about new digital solutions which have been developed in cooperation with partners and customers over the last two years.
ppi solutions in action
Next to hearing about various topics surrounding the digital transformation, guests at ppi’s Open Days also had the opportunity to find out more about how some of ppi’s solutions are used in practice. For example, Katrin Hube and Nico Augustin spoke about the use of the new self-service ad portal AdSelf at the regional media house VRM (Allgemeine Zeitung, Darmstädter Echo, etc.). AdSelf is a completely new solution that has been developed in just nine months, followed by a successful go- live at the media house. The browser-based solution enables readers to conveniently book ads in the publications of a publisher, also using mobile devices if they prefer.
The editorial system Content-X also featured at the Open Days: The Indian Journalist N.A. Mahamed Ismail outlined the successful introduction of Content-X at the large publishing house The Printers Mysore. In the run-up to the ppi Days, two further media companies, including the Nürnberger Presse publishing house, had decided to use the editorial system by ppi Media and Digital Collections.
The presentations at ppi’s Open Days were followed by further workshops on solutions such as AdSelf and Content-X; they were attended by roughly a third of the participants who used them as a chance for intensive discussions.
Towards a successful future
“Despite the power failure at Hamburg Airport and the resulting delays and lengthy journeys for some attendants, we once again enjoyed two very inspirational days with interesting presentations and lively discussions about new business models and solutions.” According to Dr. Hauke Berndt, managing director and COO of ppi Media, the option to produce based on templates alone attracted great interest and led to an extremely well-attended workshop on Content-X. “For us, the ppi Open Days are always a very special event as it offers us unique opportunities for face-to-face conversations with our customers.” The ppi Open Days 2019 are expected to take place on May 20-21, 2019.