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WAAS 2024 Exhibitors Target Nigeria’s Lucrative $10bn Auto Market

By Adaobi Rhema Oguejiofor

Nigeria’s automotive sector showed promises at the West Africa Automotive Show (WAAS), 2024, with exhibitors identifying the country’s growing automotive industry, estimated to be worth over $10 billion.

Exhibitors from all over the world convened at the WAAS event, which took place at the Landmark Event Centre in Lagos, between 14th and 16th May, showcasing the latest innovations and technologies in the automotive sector. The event also attracted a diverse array of exhibitors, who were keen to tap into Nigeria’s vast market potential.

According to some exhibitors who spoke with journalists at the event, the Nigerian market is enormous and the country’s business environment favours the automotive industry, considering its large population and the strong demand for quality spare parts from vehicle owners. Some of the exhibitors further noted that they are currently looking to invest in plants in the country after seeing its potential.

A representative of Kabat Tyre, Poland, Maksim Dallinhuk, stated that the plan of the company includes establishing plants in Nigeria as a result of the huge market the country presents. Dallinhuk also acknowledged that the West Africa Automotive show provides a unique opportunity for companies in the industry to connect with potential distributors and customers in the West African region in general and Nigeria in particular.

“We are distributors of various kinds of tyres and we look at the potential opportunity in West Africa, especially Nigeria and we have continued to tap into the market and grow it. We have been able to support the subsector in places like Ethiopia and Kenya and we are doing the same in Nigeria,” Dallinhuk stated.

Similarly, Exhibition Manager, Georgina Lloyd, said that WAAS was designed to boost the growth of Nigeria’s automotive industry and foreign investors are keen on establishing their presence in the country in order to sustain the course of development. According to her, with Nigeria spending an estimated N14 trillion, which is equivalent to $10 billion yearly on vehicle parts importation, WAAS plans to help build the domestic industry. She added that the event is an opportunity to beam the spotlight on local success stories and boost workforce knowledge and skill sets, while also helping shape national policy. Lloyd also explained that in addition to exploring opportunities to build Nigeria’s automotive parts industry being discussed in the conference programme, WAAS will spotlight Nigeria’s automotive industry with 24 local businesses in the exhibition and also bring in international expertise through global companies as overseas exhibitors are keen to work and find business partners in Nigerian entrepreneurs. She noted that after all, WAAS connects suppliers, dealers, and manufacturers, creating an unparalleled networking environment exclusively tailored for the West Africa automotive industry, including auto parts and solutions.

On her part, the President of the Auto Spare Parts and Machinery Dealers Association (ASPMDA), Lagos, Hon. Ngozi Emechebe, expressed excitement about the sustainability of the exhibition, which has continued to deepen the growth of the industry and helped the businesses of her members. She stated that members of the association have always been the biggest beneficiaries since the Business to Business (B2B) started hosting the exhibition in the country because those in the industry usually needed to spend substantial resources travelling abroad in order to engage with manufacturers and import products, but now the manufacturers are present and members can directly interact with them and negotiate deals.

Meanwhile, Coscharis Motors, a representative of major international auto brands in Nigeria, delivered special discounts, freebies, on-the-sport auto care, original parts and expert advice as a way of providing visitors at its stand with an exciting time at the event. It noted that this exclusive opportunity allowed customers to access original automotive products at unbeatable prices, enhancing both their driving experience and vehicle longevity.

Before the event kicked off, the General Manager of Marketing and Corporate Communications at Coscharis Group, Abiona Babarinde, said that the company is delighted to participate in the WAAS 2024 and showcase its commitment to delivering excellence in the automotive sector, adding that Coscharis aims to showcase its robust product portfolio and connect with customers and prospects alike, fostering lasting relationships built on trust and reliability in delivering value for their money over the years.

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