Dubai, UAE: The biggest names in the global automotive aftermarket are gathering in Dubai this week, as they take aim at a Middle East spare parts market and auto services industry that’s estimated to grow by 4.9 per cent over the next five years.
Automechanika Dubai 2017 opened today (7 May) at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, where 1,954 exhibitors from 57 countries are looking to make inroads in a regional market where spare parts revenue will be worth US$14.8 billion by 2021.
The 15th edition of the Middle East and Africa’s largest auto aftermarket trade fair was flagged off by His Excellency Mattar Al Tayer, Director General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors at the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority.
Spanning 69,089sqm of exhibition space, the annual three-day event’s global footprint is underlined by the presence of 25 country pavilions and 36 international trade associations, while more than half of the 30,000-plus trade visitors are expected to come from outside of the UAE.
Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Automechanika Dubai’s organiser Messe Frankfurt Middle East, said: “It’s estimated that 44.5 million passenger vehicles will ply Middle East roads by 2020, while a further 1.8 million commercial vehicles in the GCC will pave the way for some impressive opportunities for the automotive services industry.
“Automechanika Dubai presents the key to this dynamic market, offering a unique platform for global and local players alike to look for new regional distributors, open up new markets, or expand on existing customer bases where there’s still plenty of room for growth.”
Automechanika Dubai covers the six product groups of Parts & Components (1,125 exhibitors); Tyres & Batteries (230); Accessories & Customising (205). Repair & Maintenance (200); Electronics & Systems (140); and Car Wash, Care & Reconditioning (55).
Among the leading global brands this year is WABCO, a provider of electronic braking, stability, suspension and transmission automation systems for commercial vehicles. The Belgian-headquartered company, which achieved sales of US$747.3 million in the first quarter of 2017, is showcasing its entire range of aftermarket technologies and services.
Philippe Colpron, the WABCO Aftermarket Vice President, said: “The GCC has become a very attractive market for transport and logistics in the last years. As the oil price is declining, the region is looking for new ways to grow, for example with a stronger focus on tourism.
“In the next years there will be a significant number of big events, including the Expo Dubai 2020 and the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup. These events are connected to giant infrastructural projects which result in a higher demand for transport and logistics. Our role is to support the transport and logistics companies in the region to reduce the downtimes of fleets and to maximise their efficiency.”
“We’re at Automechanika Dubai 2017 this week to get in direct contact with the industry and to show them how we can support their needs and help them to address the infrastructural challenges,” added Colpron.
Also looking to make an impression this year is ZF Aftermarket from Germany. The world’s second largest aftermarket organisation is showcasing an expanded product portfolio of driveline, chassis, safety, and steering technology under the brands ZF, Sachs, Lemförder, TRW, Boge, and Openmatics.
Dr. Alexander Sabbah, Managing Director of ZF Services Middle East, said: “Through our well established Middle East footprint comprising a head office in Dubai paired with a fully equipped technical centre, a central logistics centre and branch offices in Kuwait and Qatar, we perfectly meet the rising regional demand well into the future.”
“At Automechanika Dubai 2017 we’re displaying a broad variety of ZF’s product portfolio. The 9 HP automatic transmission for vehicles with front-transverse mounted engines will be among the key exhibits. For motorsport specialists, ZF Aftermarket is also showcasing our extensive motorsports products from the Sachs Performance program for race car applications.”
Balkrishna Industries (BKT) from India is among the key international players in Automechanika Dubai’s Tyres & Batteries section, and is launching its latest range of Off Highway Tyres (OHT) for Multi-purpose trucks, Material handling, Port equipment, Backhoe loaders, and All Terrain Cranes.
Rajiv Poddar, the Joint Managing Director of BKT said: “BKT has emerged as a global leader in the OHT segment and has established itself as a highly reliable brand. We’ve made massive investments in our manufacturing facilities and processes which ensure uninterrupted supply of class leading quality products.
“With the strong support of end users, BKT has been growing consistently in the Middle East, and this year we’ll increase our presence significantly in the Earthmoving and Industrial segment. Our presence in the port segment has also been growing significantly and with the launch of some new products it’s expected to grow exponentially in future.”
Meanwhile, Satbir International is one of 198 UAE companies at Automechanika Dubai 2017 and a top player in the Accessories & Customizing section. Satbir International is showcasing its newest brands including Tornador, a vehicle detailing tool, and its KPMF vehicle wrapping brand.
CEO and Managing Director Satbir Singh Anand said: “We’re the oldest surviving business in the UAE dealing in car accessories, car care and performance parts, carrying more than 25 well-known brands from Asia, Europe and USA. We offer more than 4,000 items at any given time, and this has made us the number one vendor for most of our customers.
“Accessories manufacturers are always searching for new products that can capture the imagination of today’s generation. Car wrapping was introduced a few years ago, and manufacturers are finding new technologies to provide the enthusiast a wider choice of colours and texture. KPMF from the UK is at the forefront of this technology and will be showcased at Automechanika Dubai 2017 for the first time.”
Automechanika Dubai is the Middle East and Africa’s largest automotive aftermarket exhibition, connecting the world’s leading manufacturers with traders, distributors, wholesalers, importers and exporters from throughout the wider region and beyond.
It also features two insightful conferences providing a deeper understanding into connected mobility and the future direction of the regional aftermarket: The Spare Parts and Maintenance Conference on 7 May, and Smart Traffic Middle East from 8 – 9 May.