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Weekly News Review | 20 March 2017 | Automotive Purchasing and Supply Chain Automotive Purchasing and Supply Chain

Talking Point

Automotive leaders discuss the past, present and future in Vienna

Last week, a number of top tier executives met at the Automotive Leaders Summit in Vienna, Austria to discuss a range of important subjects in the automotive industry - from supply chain innovation and OEM-tier supplier relations to new mobility and smart infrastructures. The successful event established a variety of common interests and themes throughout each panel, illustrating the importance of bringing the European automotive industry together at such an important time.

Europe continues to thrive through collaborative efforts and innovation, however the region must continue to grow and develop in order to flourish. As panels reflected on 2016 and looked beyond 2017, discussions involved emerging challenges such as preparation for the United Kingdom’s departure of the European Union, border control and environmental regulations. An insight into the current state of Europe illustrated the ever changing automotive market, this year making the transition from economically-driven industry into a politically-focused market. This truly echoes the need for events like this that bring together industry-wide experts to overcome the challenges that we all face today and predict tomorrow.

The summit saw two very different sides of the automotive industry come together, which surprised, interested and - above all - motivated attendees to create new relationships to revolutionise out of date processes and ideologies. Government bodies, tier suppliers, LSPs and automakers searched for new solutions that would create mutual benefits for the region, as well as highlighting issues that need to be addressed, such as visibility, communication and, of course, collaboration. The industry is in great need of partnerships and joint ventures; we are finally seeing this become a reality.

As a region, Europe is unlike anywhere else in the world, full of countries with different regulations, processes and competitive markets. This was certainly evident at the summit, with players from countries all over the region giving their own personal insights into what they think needs to be addressed in the present and what is possible in the future. Respected figures took to the stage to address road, rail and sea transportation, analysing what can be done to improve day-to-day operations, delays and long term issues. Together with participation from the audience, all panels agreed, once again, that communication, visibility and collaboration would lead the drive into modern automotive logistics.

Flowing into the afternoon, panels transitioned into the new era of mobility, highlighting what needs to be done to protect, create and sustain a new world of automation and connectivity. Now, more than ever, technology is taking over our lives and the automotive industry is in a period of extreme change and development. Over the next ten years we will see more change than we have in the last 100 years, so it is vital that the industry comes together like it did in Vienna this year and discuss a plan for everyone involved. From smart cities to supply chain technology, attendees were in awe of the innovations on display that will completely change the way automotive businesses will operate in the near future. From autonomous cars and trucks to drone delivery and wireless vehicle charging networks, it is truly astonishing what is just around the corner for us.

Ultimately, I believe that through each in depth and distinguished panel, attendees left in a new state of mind, whether it was opening their eyes to modern innovations or hearing influential insights on effective solutions to the automotive supply chain.

From all of us at Three6Zero, we thank you for making the first European Automotive Leaders Summit an exceptional event and we look forward to seeing you all next year.

Alex Kreetzer

Alex Kreetzer - Digital Editor

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