Celebrating its fifth anniversary, the North East Automotive Alliance (NEAA) Expo returns to The Beacon of Light, Sunderland, with over 130 companies from across the UK showcasing their products and services. In an exciting, new development, the Expo will include a Tech Zone that will introduce some of the most industry-leading, new technology and innovation set to shape the sector.
Sponsored by MAKE it Sunderland, ElringKlinger, Senseye, Hitachi Consulting and Invest North East England, the one-day event on Thursday 26 September, will bring together 600 delegates from across the UK. In a further show of strength, the Expo will commence the evening prior with a dinner for around 200 delegates at the Stadium of Light, sponsored by Invest South Tyneside, part of South Tyneside Council.
The region’s only event solely focused on the North East’s automotive sector, innovation is a key theme to this year’s Expo with a Tech Zone, sponsored by Hitachi Consulting and will feature companies such as Omron Electronics, Nissan Motor Manufacturing (UK), Animmersion, Unipres (UK) and Flowstore. There is also a Meet the Buyer event offering companies involved at various stages in the supply chain with the opportunity to discuss their products and services in one-to-one meetings with potential customers.
Paul Butler, chief executive officer at the NEAA, said: “The Expo provides excellent opportunities for companies from across the sector to promote their skills and expertise in a relaxed, friendly environment that encourages networking, business development and collaboration.
“The Expo follows our first North East Automotive Alliance Conference which took place in June and provided a positive insight into the future direction of the sector, including the massive impact that new technology will continue to make.
“In the five years since we launched the Expo, delegate numbers have grown from 200 to an expected 600 this year, as members continue to benefit in many ways from their association with the NEAA. These benefits include multiple opportunities to increase brand awareness, showcase products and services, support capability improvements and to gain access to high quality decision makers at various levels in the supply chain. The Expo is, increasingly, the main hub for this activity and, as such, there will be a high volume of delegates and exhibitors from throughout the UK and their attendance will open up opportunities for local businesses.
“The event is free for delegates, who can drop in and meet the 130 exhibitors as well as experiencing our first Tech Zone, which will highlight some of the exceptional companies we have in the North East.”
Demand to attend is high, with over 50% of delegates already signed up and just nine of the 130 exhibitor spaces available.
Omron Electronics, with its collaborative and mobile range of robotic technologies, which support manufacturers to develop more agile and flexible production solutions, is taking part in the technology showcase.
Dan Rossek, regional marketing manager, said: “The Expo provides a unique environment to showcase our technology and to listen and learn how other companies are positioning themselves to take advantage of the tremendous opportunities that exist within the automotive sector.
“With growing consumer trends driving the demand for increased product diversification and customisation, Omron’s technology focus will provide an insight into solutions tailored to overcome the inherent manufacturing challenges in realising an effective and efficient solution to flexible production.”
As well as a tech zone taking place throughout the day, Invest North East England is sponsoring a trade and invest zone for delegates to visit. The trade and invest zone will include a Polish delegation from five automotive companies, as well as Polish cluster, Silesia Automotive and Advanced Manufacturing (SA&AM).
Guy Currey, inward investment director, Invest North East England, said: “With over 30,000 people directly employed in the North East automotive sector and a 126,000 in the wider manufacturing industry we’re delighted to support the annual North East Automotive Expo 2019. As trade and investment partner, the event gives us a great platform to showcase the region on the national and international stage.”