Numbers were down nearly a fifth compared with the last Munich event, which reached a high as the plant market peaked in 2007. Customer numbers were most down from Asia and America.
As a direct result of the flight ban more than 50 exhibitors failed to attend the show. Although 3,150 companies from 53 countries managed to overcome transport chaos.
Despite the problems exhibitors said this year’s order levels showed the worst is over for the plant industry.
Michael Heidemann, managing director of Zeppelin, Cat’s dealer in Germany, said: “The good old times are coming back. The figures for sales taken at the fair far exceed our expectations.
“We reckon we will be able to match the volume we took at the record bauma in 2007. This is a clear signal that at Zeppelin-Cat business is moving forward again after the difficult year of 2009.”
Ralf Wezel, Secretary-General of CECE, the Committee for European Construction Equipment said: “The mood in the industry shows that in Europe the bottom of the cycle is now behind us.
“Confidence has returned. Of course at the start of the fair the exhibitors felt the lack of many customers from Asia and America – but in the second half of Bauma, this improved considerably.
Michikazu Okada, Vice-President of Hitachi Sumitomo Heavy Industries Construction Crane Co, said: “We had a lot of new business opportunities some of which already resulted in unexpected conclusions of sale.”