Chris Brower, SAA President
Greetings SAA Member,
We are just over two months into 2018 and, like normal, it seems we are in a full sprint. While OEMs and suppliers are racing to be the next innovator when it comes to mobility, auto sales dropped 2% year over year in February as tightening credit conditions, higher interest rates and lower discounts drove up monthly payments and slowed the U.S. light vehicle business even as the broader economy remains strong.
With everything going on, I wanted to make sure you didn’t lose sight of the importance of membership in the Society of Automotive Analysts (SAA). I also wanted to take a moment to introduce myself to you. I’m humbled and honored to be the new SAA president and am excited to work with the Board of Directors to offer even more valuable and informative events and networking opportunities.
Whether it’s an event, contact or data that you seek, or you are making an effort to gauge the pulse of the automotive industry for a future business opportunity or career choice, the SAA is a great place to start. Over the past 30 years, the SAA has evolved into a leading industry organization and valuable partner to the analyst and strategist community. Our membership is diverse with increased participation from OEMs and suppliers, and with members representing sales and marketing, product management, purchasing and almost every functional area discipline.
Fulfilling the needs of a diverse range of companies and members’ roles is a tough task – but it is a challenge that the SAA Board is ready for. The SAA started the year with our popular Outlook Conference and this year we added increased value with exclusive access to AutoMobili-D at the North American International Auto Show. Events like AutoMobili-D are just one in a wave of new industry happenings moving to the region, yet we’ve seen SAA events continue to grow in relevance, including our events that focus on Lightweighting, Supply Chain Relations Strategies, Autonomous Driving, New Business Models and Warranty/Recalls. We are fortunate to be close to our members, major universities and to a concentrated workforce of industry strategists, thought leaders, investors and analysts, unlike anywhere else in the world.
When it comes to Community Social Responsibility, the SAA is a good neighbor. We take pride in our Young Professionals Network, which helps tomorrow’s thought leaders grow their knowledge and networks, as well as our annual scholarship program with Oakland University. We reach out to new organizations when we can such as welcoming Grace Centers of Hope to our recent holiday event.
From offering new value to our members to re-investing in our youth, our Board and committees work diligently to make you proud to be a SAA member. We will continue to welcome executives from every OEM and major Tier 1 suppliers to speak at our events, be on top of the latest industry issues and trends, and strive to provide the “behind-the-scenes” access that is difficult to obtain. For example, we are currently working on a member-only event at the new American Center for Mobility which will provide members access to the latest information regarding autonomous driving technology.
I invite you attend one of our upcoming events, network with our members and see for yourself what the SAA has to offer! Our next event is our popular Recall and Warranty Summit on March 26. As a bonus, if you reach out to me directly to offer an event suggestion, speaker recommendation or potential sponsor, I will send you a complimentary VIP pass for you or a guest to one of our upcoming events. You can reach me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Enjoy what the SAA has to offer, and thank you for your support.