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14 November 2017

Automechanika Roadshow heads to West Africa

Two-day event tours Abidjan and Lagos amid double-digit annual growth of African trade buyers to Automechanika Dubai

Africa is turning into a prized continent for the global automotive aftermarket, as international manufacturers turn their attention to a region where spare parts demand is estimated to grow by nine percent annually over the next four years.

With more than 34 million vehicles plying the region’s roads, Africa is seen as a major growth market for suppliers of spare parts and accessories.  The interest is particularly strong in Nigeria and the Ivory Coast, which will be the focus of a two-day roadshow examining ways to ease access to the lucrative region.

The Automechanika Roadshow to West Africa will first stop in Abidjan, the Ivorian capital, at the Radisson Blu Hotel on 21st November 2017, before moving onto Nigeria’s commercial hub Lagos’ Golden Tulip hotel, on 22nd November.

More than 100 delegates are expected to attend, with one of the topics centred around leveraging opportunities at Automechanika Dubai, the Middle East and Africa’s largest aftermarket trade exhibition, where African trade buyers have increased exponentially in recent years.

Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the organiser of Automechanika Dubai, said the value of African spare parts demand (excluding tires, batteries and lubricants) will reach US$15.3 billion by 2020, up from an estimated $10.68 billion in 2016.

“We’ve noticed a marked increase in trade inquiries from Africa, and visitors from the continent to Automechanika Dubai have grown from 249 in 2012 to 2,215 in 2017, at an average growth of 43 percent annually,” said Pauwels. 

“The Automechanika Roadshow to Abidjan and Lagos gives us a chance to reach out to and connect key players in these crucial markets and create awareness about the immense business generating and sourcing opportunities available at Automechanika Dubai.”

The 16th edition of Automechanika Dubai will take place from 1-3 May 2018 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, featuring more than 1,900 exhibitors from 57 countries, and attracting 30,000 plus trade buyers from 136 countries. 

Pauwels said with more than 11.5 million vehicles, Nigeria is seen as one of the top African aftermarket destinations, accounting for more than US$1.5 billion in parts consumption in 2016.  He added: “Cars that are 16 years or older contribute 54 per cent to overall vehicles in use in Sub-Saharan Africa, creating huge replacement demand for parts.”

The Automechanika Roadshow to West Africa will feature an elite speaking panel including regional automotive experts and government officials involved in creating market and customs policy along with import and export regulations.

Roadshow partners include ACDelco, a global leader in replacement parts and related services, and Mineral Circles Bearings (MCB) a Dubai-based company that supplies automotive bearings for Japanese, Korean, European, and American car models.

Mohammed Al Fayyad, Customer Care and Aftersales Director in the General Motors Middle East and Africa, said ACDelco’s business volume in Africa has shown very positive signs over the years.

“We realise the importance of Africa and the opportunities it presents us,” said Al Fayyad.  “Seeing growth in countries such as Nigeria, which comes as one of the highest, we definitely want to capitalise on the trend.

“The African aftermarket offers a crucial opportunity for ACDelco given the size and growth rate that the auto industry is currently at, and we’re therefore prospecting partnerships with potential wholesalers in Nigeria and Ivory Coast and beyond for our ACDelco portfolio.”

Michel Peltier, Regional Sales Manager at MCB, said Africa is a market with a future, adding that the region’s proximity to the UAE meant MCB had a significant advantage: “Our business is 50 percent in Africa and 50 percent in the Middle East, and though we wish to maintain that, it would be good to increase this share in the coming years,” said Peltier.

“In terms of territorial expansion, we’ve managed to widen our reach to Kenya, Sudan, and Ethiopia through new distributorships for our NTN, SNR, and ILJIN bearing brands.” 

“The Automechanika Roadshow will give us a better understanding of the West African market, while opening doors of opportunities to expand our network and meet clients or distributors.  Hence, we’re inviting manufacturers, clients, and suppliers to meet us in Abidjan and Lagos.” 

Automechanika Dubai spans seven product sections of Parts & Components; Electronics & Systems; Accessories & Customising; Repair & Maintenance; Car Wash, Care & Reconditioning; and Tyres & Batteries.

The annual three-day event returns with its popular Truck Competence initiative, where more than 1,500 exhibitors will showcase their products dedicated to the entire value chain in the truck sector, from truck parts and accessories, to workshop equipment, body repair and care.

Its global influence is underlined by the presence of more than 25 country pavilions and 36 international trade associations, while 90 per cent of exhibitors, and 52 per cent of visitors are expected to come from outside of the UAE.

Automechanika Dubai 2018 will return with the popular Automechanika Academy – a series of seminars, presentations, and workshops about key issues and regulations that affect the automotive aftermarket, and the African Buyer-Seller Meet, connecting suppliers with buyers from the world’s second largest continent. 

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  • 2018