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Cologne to host games event in 2009

From next year a new games event called GAMESCom, which will effectively replace Games Convention, will take place in Cologne in September.

From next year a new games event called GAMESCom, which will effectively replace Games Convention, will take place in Cologne in September.

At a joint press conference this morning between German trade association Bundesverband Interaktive Unterhaltungssoftware and Cologne's trade fair business Koelnmesse, it was announced that the new location will provide a total of 284,000 square feet of exhibition space, with 80,000 hotel beds available in the immediate area.

Rumours of a move had been circulating since the middle of last year, prompted by a desire from publishers to move to a bigger venue and accommodate more visitors, as well as a feeling that the Leipzig venue was at capacity and so further growth was not possible.

As yet a decision hasn't been taken as to whether or not the Games Convention "family" will move to Cologne as part of the new event, and speaking in the press conference Olaf Wolters, head of BIU, said that while Leipzig had done a great job it wasn't possible to further internationalise the event - the decision was taken "for Cologne and not against Leipzig".

The event will take place in association with German TV station RTL, whose base is right next to the Cologne location, and will be at the later time of September because of the holiday season in Southern Europe in August.

No details as to which individual publishers have confirmed support for the move, but no issues are expected by BIU.

No official response from Games Convention organisers Messe Leipzig has yet been made.

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