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Events. Networking. Access.



The automotive industry invested more than $125 billion globally on research and development in 2018, according to the Auto Alliance. This ranks the auto industry ahead of other technology-driven industries, including the software/internet industry and the entire global aerospace and defense industry.

The investment in R&D is leading to all types of new innovations being designed into new vehicles that meet customer needs for comfort, convenience and safety while improving performance and energy efficiency.

The SAA believes it’s time we celebrate and recognize the innovation taking place all around us! This is why the SAA has developed the Innovation in Mobility Awards, which will recognize innovation in two categories:

1) Innovations in Lightweighting: This award recognizes suppliers that offer innovative products or technologies that provide either direct or indirect mass savings. The 2018 winner, AAM, developed an innovative driveline technology (QUANTUM) that saved up to 35% mass compared to the incumbent solution without sacrificing performance or power.

2) Technologies Enabling New Business Models: Nominees for this category include suppliers, OEMs and service providers that are pushing the boundaries in serving and proactively responding to the highly evolving “mobility” space. The award identifies companies that are actively transitioning away from traditional business models and practices and adding new lines of business and services.

Submitting an entry for the new Innovation in Mobility Awards is easy and takes just minutes to do. Click here for more information and to make your submission today. The deadline is July 31, 2019. I encourage you to keep your eyes and ears open for innovations to nominate. You can nominate your own company, but are also encouraged to nominate others if you come across a technology or business worthy of recognition.

Award winners will receive visibility over all SAA communications, as well as though our media partner dBusiness. Award winners will also be featured and invited to speak at the Strategic Planning and Innovations Summit on October 17, 2019. Please save the date on your calendar for this event at AAM in Detroit. This event is held in partnership with DuckerFrontier.

On another note, I would like to thank all the members and guests who made the 10th Annual OEM Purchasing Executives Summit on June 21 another huge success. The sold-out crowd heard from the Big 6 purchasing execs and had time before, during and after the event to meet with them and members of their staff. Thanks to Faurecia for again being a great host, and to Plante Moran for being a great partner.

In summary, I cannot stress enough the importance of getting the innovative technologies or business practices of your company recognized and rewarded. Please take a couple of minutes to enter the Innovation in Mobility Awards. And, of course, I hope you continue to enjoy the summer and time spent with your family and friends.




Chris Brower

SAA President

Global Director, Automotive Advisory, DuckerFrontier

M: 248.633.4133

Scott Tappan

SAA Vice President

Director of Sales and Marketing

United Road Services