"We, at Messe Frankfurt South Africa, visualise that this forum, which is backed by our premium Automechanika brand, will serve the local motor industry between the biennial Automechanika Johannesburg trade fairs for the automotive aftermarket," explained Joshua Low, group exhibitions director of Messe Frankfurt's South African subsidiary.
There will be two aspects to the first Cape Automotive Forum: an exhibition and a two-day conference which caters to the automotive aftermarket and the commercial vehicle market in the Western Cape.
The forum will bring together key industry stakeholders as well as trade buyers and sellers with the opportunity to network and conduct business over two days.
"We selected the Western Cape as the venue for our first forum for a number of reasons," said Low. "Firstly, the Western Cape has the second highest number of registered motor vehicles, while Cape Town is the most populous city in South Africa with the biggest number of independent body repair shops".
"In addition, we decided to add a commercial vehicle exhibition to our offering as the Western Cape has several major truck body builders, besides being the largest agricultural market in the country for fruit with many wine farms in the area, all of which require trucks and trailers to transport goods."
The conference programme and the speakers are still being finalised, with a preliminary list of topics covering issues in the local motor industry such as the future of e-retailing in the automotive aftermarket, education and learning, the automotive revolution, the state of the SA economy and its effect on the automotive sector, changes in BBBEE codes and their implications as well as doing business in Africa.