International Hardware Fair Eisenwarenmesse

Fastening a trail of innovation

BY By Ken Clark

Cologne, Germany — Innovation that fits comfortably in the tradesman’s hand took the spotlight during the Eisen Award 2018 program here at the International Hardware Fair in Cologne. The awards gave special honors to a handy rope cutter, an electric screwdriver and a reversible ratchet.

The Eisen Awards program at the International Hardware Fair, known as “Eisenwarenmesse” here in Germany, now in its fourth iteration featured 12 product nominees and was again judged by an industry jury. And once again, a dedicated area in the sprawling  Koelnmesse convention center gave all the nominees exposure in a museum-like setting, complete with glass encased exhibits of the rugged hardware products.

Knipex International Hardware Fair

Knipex wire rope cutter

Three companies — all with brands more familiar in Germany than in the United States — received the Eisen Innovation Award.

  • Knipex wire rope cutter was described as a high-performing, light weight and compact cutting tool. Judges liked the design and the functionality.
  • Hazet reversible ratchet. Noted for its chrome-plated surface, judges liked the products power and ability to operate in cramped spaces.
  • The WIHA speedE electronic screwdriver generated this comment from the judges: “Electricians are impressed. It is kind on the wrists, fast, productive and ergonomic.”

The Eisen Award 2018 ceremony took place during a Welcome Party on first night of the event. Held every other year here in Cologne, the trade fair runs March 4-7.


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