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Laura Torsiello

It’ll work even without the helium balloons

Along with her colleagues, Laura Torsiello is organizing the Evonik exhibit at the SAE automotive trade show. Timing, patience, and flexibility are essential here—because unforeseen obstacles sometimes arise.

If you need someone to keep a clear overview of what’s going on, Laura Torsiello’s your person. This marketing expert is one of the Business Communications Partners for the North America Region at Evonik and is responsible for Evonik’s stand at the world’s largest automotive trade show organized by the SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) in Detroit. Among her tasks at the start of the planning phase is theme setting, carried out together with specialists from the Evonik for Automotive team and the segments. This is followed by implementation: In conjunction with colleagues, agencies, and the trade show organizers, Torsiello fine tunes details of stand structure and the associated technical requirements, the exhibits, and the displays, which must showcase the latest products from Evonik.

Unexpected challenges sometimes arise here. The plan for VESTAMID® materials at this year’s stand, for example, was a floating plastic fuel line. Helium balloons were to have demonstrated the lightness of the Evonik materials by suspending a line system over the stand. But trade-show regulations prohibit such exhibits because a balloon could become detached and trigger the sprinklers of the fire protection system. To prevent the stand from being literally washed out, Torsiello sought out alternatives. “That’s the challenge: Something unexpected can always crop up that completely upsets my schedule. And then we need to be flexible and quickly find another solution,” she says.

Two days before the start of the show Torsiello will be in Detroit, where she will oversee the construction of Evonik’s stand. The augmented reality app developed specially for SAE 2018, which projects a car with Evonik materials into reality, will also be put through its final paces. During the show Torsiello will supervise the stand and explain applications to visitors with the help of iPads and touch screens.

“All in all, it’s a love-hate affair,” she says of her job. “The frenetic pace can be wearing. But at the same time I love the variety, and when the show is successful, I look back with pride at a job well done.”