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Product innovation in the spotlight

Entries are open for Automechanika Johannesburg’s 2019 Innovation Awards. Winning products will receive winning treatment at the automotive aftermarket’s event of the year, to be held from September 18 to 21 at the National Exhibition Centre, Nasrec

Worldwide, product innovation is what helps to drive Automechanika’s automotive trade fairs – and what better way to celebrate the fact in South Africa than by honouring the best of the best in a special display at Automechanika Johannesburg 2019.

This year’s event – which will be held from September 18 to 21 at the National Exhibition Centre at Nasrec – serves as a gateway to the growing African automotive aftermarket, targeting trade visitors from sub-Saharan Africa. It is the largest trade fair of its type on the African continent.

Co-located with the REIFEN Tyre Show, the FUTUROAD Truck, Bus and Commercial Vehicle Expo and SCALEX Johannesburg – which focuses on Logistics and Materials Handling – Automechanika Johannesburg represents four shows in one, providing fantastic opportunities for automotive companies to showcase the latest and greatest in product development.

And that’s where the Innovation Awards competition plays a significant role. Its aim is to uncover products that are deemed to set benchmarks in South Africa’s automotive aftermarket, utilising Automechanika Johannesburg 2019 as the platform to honour the winning items.

Entries will be judged by an independent jury of automotive experts who, in defined categories, will score products considered ground-breaking from a variety of perspectives.

Jury members will look to uncover items that are innovative and promote efficiency, that hold the promise of performing beyond expectation, that are of excellent quality and represent good value for money, and that bring fresh perspectives to the automotive sectors in which they compete.

Functionality, practicality, styling, benefits to users, environmental friendliness and other perceived pioneering qualities are among the specifics that jury members will be looking for. The experts will come from the ranks of local aftermarket and automotive focused organisations, including the RMI, NAACAM, NAAMSA and the automotive media.

For the 2019 competition, the jury will consider entries across a variety of categories: Parts; Accessories; Automotive Systems including Driver Assistance, Safety and Information Systems; Diagnostics; Tuning; Repair and Maintenance; OE Products & Services; IT and Management; and Service Station & Car Wash.

 

If you manufacture, distribute or supply products you believe to be cutting edge in any of these categories, please take the time to enter the Innovation Awards – the accolades are significant.

HOW TO ENTER:

1.      There is no entry fee. Prospective entrants will be invited to submit by noon on Wednesday, July 17, photographs and a detailed description of any automotive aftermarket or OE product they have developed, manufactured, imported or distributed in South Africa, which they deem worthy of entry into the Automechanika Johannesburg 2019 Innovation Awards.

2.      Based on the photographs and descriptions – which must include information relating to the technical characteristics and relevance of each product – jury members will rank each item.

3.      The description of each product must include its country of origin, when it was introduced to the South African market, the category of the aftermarket in which it competes, as well as the following:

•     Perceived innovative quality;

•     The solution the product aims to provide;

•     Its functionality and user benefits;

•     Perceived economic efficiency;

•     Safety aspects it promotes;

•     Environmental aspects it promotes;

•     Its relevance to the automotive sector in which it competes.

4.      From the jury members’ returned scores, products which achieve the highest marks on a collective basis will be deemed to be finalists. Representatives of the companies whose products have been selected will be asked to submit by Wednesday, August 21, two examples of the items for physical scrutiny by jury members.

 

5.      Following physical evaluation, winners will be determined on the basis of highest marks scored. Gold, silver and bronze certificates will be awarded to the top three products, based on their scores. The remaining finalists will receive highly commended certificates.

6.      Organisers of Automechanika Johannesburg 2019 will arrange for exhibits of all the finalist products to be highlighted in a special display at the show under an Innovation Awards banner. Presentations will be made to winners at a prize-giving ceremony which will form part of the trade fair’s official opening on September 18.

7.      To enter the Automechanika Johannesburg 2019 Innovation Awards Competition, you are requested to submit by e-mail on or before the closing date (July 17), your product motivations, along with hi-resolution pictures of the items at least 1Mb in size.

8.      Entries must be sent to the competition’s convenor, Wynter Murdoch, at the following e-mail address: wynter@charmont.co.za.

9.      Each entry must include the e-mail address and telephone number of the person responsible for the submission, along with details of the company he or she represents.

10.  Names of jury members and the organisations they represent will be made public once the panel has been finalised.

If you have any queries or require information regarding Automechanika Johannesburg’s Innovation Awards initiative, please contact Wynter Murdoch at 011 782 1070 (office) or 082 453 9794 (mobile) or via e-mail at wynter@charmont.co.za.

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