Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City 2023 closes to the praise of a cross-cultural sharing platform for business
Participants at Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City expressed great confidence in the Vietnamese automotive industry as many begin to lay down foundations for the upcoming technology-driven era. The trade fair took place from 23 to 25 June 2023 at the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Center. Feedback from those seeking business networking, investment and training also enjoyed the added element of entertainment that marked the fifth edition. Organisers vow to continue various forms of community outreach to build momentum in the market and tap into local business culture.
Key figures from Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City 2023:
- Visitors: 13,148 from 37 countries and regions
- Exhibitors: 461 from 20 countries and regions
- Scale: 15,740 sqm
Ms Fiona Chiew, General Manager of Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd, remarked: “I am delighted to see an increase in participation amongst local and overseas exhibitors and visitors. It shows that players are recognising opportunities in the automotive supply chain and are using our platform as a gateway for trade and exchange. The engagement from the local players in our fringe programme was also very encouraging; it demonstrates an eagerness to advance the local automotive industry.”
Once again, the trade fair offered an ideal occasion for domestic and overseas automotive markets to come together. Buyers visited from 37 countries and regions, including Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the US, and Vietnam, to name a few.
Recognising the show’s global influence and importance to the local market, Mr Nguyen Minh Vu, Service Manager, OBD Vietnam, said: “The scale of Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City has definitely grown in recent years. We decided to join again as we continue to see results each time we exhibit. This time we have met buyers from China, India, and Malaysia. Therefore, the show helps to raise our company’s profile beyond Vietnam to other regions around the world.”
Visiting the show from South Korea, Mr Bryan Jon, President of DACCORD from South Korea, expanded on his reasons for attending. He noted: “Many Korean companies are investing in the country to establish local production bases. For the automotive industry, we know that local car ownership has doubled in the last five years thanks to the younger generation purchasing four-wheelers. It is creating new opportunities, which is why I am here; to get a better picture of the market and find new products for my trading company.” He added, “I am pleased with the connections I have made locally. The international involvement was also more than I expected, and I explored brands from Germany, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore and Malaysia too.”
One Malaysian exhibitor was Schmaco Auto Parts Industries SDN BHD. Managing Director, Mr Edmund Tan, reflected: “Participating allows us to keep up with local market needs and provide appropriate products in the future. For foreign companies like us, the exhibition is a gateway to the market where we can promote high-quality products. So, in addition to local companies, many players from other countries and regions were exhibiting.”
Along the same lines, Mr Khach Tham Quan, a local sales representative from Cty TNHH Tan Phai Saigon, said: “The international representation of exhibitors was beneficial for my sourcing. I found the latest equipment and tools at the highest international standards from leading brands like Autel. I will follow up with them as I am in the process of upgrading my workshop to serve customers better.”
This year, the Vietnam Association of Supporting Industries also brought a bigger group of players to the show. Mr Duong Danh Tai, Vice President Head of Linkage and Promotion Department of the Vietnam Association of Supporting Industries, reflected by expressing: “We believe Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City is the right platform for our members to tap into the global supply chain. Its influence can help open up opportunities for exporting car parts and foster more networks with foreign and domestic carmakers and OEMs. Going forward, we plan to invite more members so that they can continue developing a greater understanding of global industrial trends and market movements.”
Spotlighting trends in the market
During the three days, many conversations revolved around the rapidly evolving automotive industry. In particular, electric vehicles, automotive manufacturing, and automation dominated discussions.
Speaking to ZF Aftermarket’s Vice President of the Asia Pacific Division, Mr Teoh Chee How, mentioned: “Sustainability is one of the key trends contributing to electrification. We are watching the EV space closely and already have good learnings from Europe and China. They are ahead of the region in this sense. If I look at Asia Pacific, the growth drivers are China and Southeast Asia. When zooming in closer, Indonesia and Thailand show dynamic results, but the next will be Vietnam. We are leveraging Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City to connect with potential customers as there are many opportunities for our solutions in the passenger car, commercial vehicle and industrial segments.”
In this regard, the EV Zone, Automotive Manufacturing & Automation Zone, Auto Service & Maintenance Zone, and Accessories & Customising Zone were amongst the show floor’s most popular areas. Across these specialised zones, exhibitors presented their latest products, services and technologies in OE to the aftermarket.
Elsewhere, attending the Digitalisation and Electrification Networking Event, Mr Le Thanh Duoc, Engineer at INABA Model VN Co Ltd, pointed out: “The content shared was very relevant as it touched on all the major trends around electrification, technological innovation and industry 4.0. We joined the event because we also must embrace these advancements. Therefore, it was very beneficial that speakers introduced a number of new cutting-edge products, which we may potentially assess in the future.”
Echoing this idea, Marco Forlingieri, Senior Technical Sales, Sustainability Software, Complex Engineering, IBM Technology, South East Asia (ASEAN), shared: “For the country to make it big in the global supply chain, it needs to show the world that Vietnamese engineering means high-quality products, not low cost alternatives. Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City can support this mindset change by making people more aware of the automotive industry and opportunities in the EV ecosystem.”
Going beyond a traditional automotive industry exhibition
Ms Judy Wang, President of Yorkers Exhibition Service Vietnam, noted: “As a rising automotive hub in ASEAN, we feel it is important that overseas companies understand local business customs. Every touchpoint offers valuable insights as Vietnamese people prefer to explore the industry in a more physical way, wanting to see and hold automotive parts and products to then engage in deeper conversations. It is also the reason why we incorporated entertainment. Through expanding the scope of visitors, we hope that consumers can learn more about the automotive industry, while exhibitors can also understand end-user demands in person.”
The broader aim was to build up an awareness of the entire value chain, in hopes of activating the consumers and generate aftermarket sales throughout the year.
From this standpoint, AutoFest@HCMC drew in a wider audience adopting more B2C elements. Visitors were impressed by the unique trade fair experience, which brought together the auto service day, live music and entertainment, as well as the EMMA Vietnam – Car Audio and Modification Competition, drift shows, and car servicing.
“I have participated at four editions of Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City either as an exhibitor or visitor on separate occasions,” explained Mr Nguyen Ha Tuan, Sales Manager of Saigon Invest. “The exhibition is great fun as you can watch interesting performances and learn a lot, as well as see all the latest products from international brands. My favourite part was the Auto Service Day as I got my car inspected by a professional car care team, and witnessed first-hand the latest car maintenance products and services in action.”
In addition, Mr Nguyen Hoang, a student from Shape Education Vietnam, voiced: “I came to the fair as I really wanted to see the Drift & Stunt Show. I am majoring in automotive technology so I always like to join activities about vehicles and special-purpose cars to gain more insights. I also attended the Auto Maintenance Workshop. Therefore, I really appreciate all the professional and exciting aspects of the show. I look forward to coming back in the future!”
The next edition of Automechanika Ho Chi Minh City will take place from 20 to 22 June 2024. For more information, please visit www.automechanika-hcmc.com or contact Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd, +852 2802 7728 / autoasia@hongkong.
The trade fair is co-organised by Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd, Chan Chao International Co Ltd and Yorkers Exhibition Service Vietnam.
The brand’s flagship show, Automechanika Frankfurt, will return to the stage from 10 to 14 September 2024. Meanwhile, other Automechanika events organised by Messe Frankfurt’s Greater China offices include: