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Italian companies rev up presence at Automechanika Dubai 2018

31 Mar 2018

World’s 9th largest auto parts exporter looks to Middle East and Africa as key growth market

Dubai, UAE:  Italian automotive aftermarket brands are looking to the Middle East and Africa as a key growth market, with leading players from the world’s 9th largest auto parts exporter revving their engines ahead of the upcoming Automechanika Dubai 2018 trade fair. 

According to online data aggregator World’s Top Exports, Italy exported US$12.5 billion worth of auto parts and components in 2016 – 3.5 percent of total global exports for the year (US$360.6 billion).

The UAE is among the top ten markets for high quality and genuine Italian auto parts, and now major players are gearing up for more growth using the Automechanika Dubai auto aftermarket exhibition as their launch platform targeting trade buyers from throughout the wider region.

An Italian Country Pavilion comprising 33 manufacturers will be complemented by 37 standalone Italian exhibitors at Automechanika Dubai 2018, which will feature more than 1,900 exhibitors from 55 countries when it opens from 1 – 3 May 2018 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The Italian presence at Automechanika Dubai, now in its 16th edition, has witnessed a steady rise.  Over the last eight years, Italian exhibitor sqm space covered at the three-day event has nearly doubled, from 800sqm in 2011 to 1,500sqm in 2018.

Top returning brands covering the entire spectrum of the automotive aftermarket include Brembo, Dayco, Eni, Ravaglioli, ERA, Fiamm, and Metelli, while UFI Filters, a global leader in filtration technology, is exhibiting for the first time.

Luca Betti, Group Aftermarket Business Unit Director at UFI Filters, said the Company recently reinforced its Dubai office to strengthen customer service support as business ramps up in the UAE, and regionally.

“UFI Filters was one of the first Italian companies to identify opportunities in the Far East and Middle East, and today we have 14 productions sites and employ over 4,000 people in 16 countries,” said Betti.

“We employ 180 engineers at Innovation Centres in Italy and China and hold 167 patents. Over the past nine years, UFI Filters’ sales have grown on average ten percent annually, and as a research driven company, we reinvest over five percent of our revenues in research and development.

“UFI Filters will demonstrate at Automechanika Dubai 2018 its experience as a supplier for world leading manufacturers, the consequent advantages for the UFI and Sofima aftermarket lines, and the great potential for distributors in the Middle East region,” added Betti.

Elsewhere, Brembo, regarded as the world leader and innovator for disc brake technology, is returning to Automechanika Dubai in 2018 with its wide range of brake discs, brake pads, drums, brake fluid, and hydraulic components.

Marco Moretti, Brembo’s Aftermarket Business Unit Marketing Director, said the Middle East is a very important area for its business, given the rise of vehicle parc in the region and subsequent demand for spare parts and aftermarket services.

“In 2017, car parc in the Middle East grew by 10.8 million vehicles compared to 2016, reaching 41.7 million in total at the end of 2017,” said Moretti.  “Across the region, there’ll be 50.6 million vehicles in 2022. Considering the growing importance of the Middle East – to which two Brembo field area managers are dedicated – and the international character of Automechanika Dubai, we decided to participate again.

“At the show in 2018, we’ll launch the new Brembo co-cast disc, which enriches the premium aftermarket range of integral and composite discs. The new solution, dedicated to the most recent Mercedes applications, comprises a steel hub and a cast-iron braking surface, coupled during a special casting process,” added Moretti.

Another Italian exhibitor at Automechanika Dubai in 2018 is Alcar, a leading international supplier of spare parts and components for industrial vehicles, earth-moving machinery, tractors and farm machinery, motor pumps and generators.  Alcar sells spare parts from leading brand names such as New Holland, Fiat, Iveco, and Perkins.

Alcar CEO Silvio Pernis said there’re great opportunities for the company to expand its presence across the Middle East and Africa: “Alcar has participated in Automechanika Dubai since 2012, as it’s the Middle East’s leading trade fair for the automotive services industry,” he said.  “Moreover Dubai is the main hub for the wider Middle East and African markets, providing access to all hard-to-reach countries in the region.

“We’ve made contact with a large number of spare parts dealers across the region at the show, which we hope to substantially increase this year while also touching base with other entities such as construction companies and contractors, transport companies, leading operators in the agricultural sector and large engine repair workshops,” Pernis added.

The Italian Pavilion is one of 23 country pavilions at Automechanika Dubai 2018, with others coming from Australia, Belgium, Brazil, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Iran, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, Poland, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, UK, and the USA.

Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the organiser of Automechanika Dubai, said: “Rapid urbanisation, government infrastructure investments, and growing tourism, are positively impacting the commercial and private vehicle market in Middle East, and the subsequent demand for spare parts and aftermarket services.”

“Vehicle sales in general are on an upward trend, and the market here holds a lot of potential for international brands looking to gain traction in the region.  The Italian presence, along with that of other country pavilions at Automechanika Dubai underlines the exhibition’s important role in connecting thousands of trade buyers from more than 130 countries with global suppliers of aftermarket products and services.”

Automechanika Dubai is the Middle East and Africa’s largest international trade fair for the automotive service industry, encompassing the six product of Parts & Components; Electronics & Systems; Accessories & Customizing; 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 repairs and care.

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