Supplier group CLEPA achieves new milestone
Powertrain component producer Dana this month became the 100th member of the European suppliers association, CLEPA.
Suppliers are counting on the Brussels-based organization to help them cope with tough times in Europe and to take advantage of growth opportunities worldwide, CLEPA CEO Jean-Marc Gales told Automotive News Europe.
In Europe, CLEPA serves as an EU lobby group and represents suppliers seeking venture capital funds from the European Central Bank and other sources. The organization also helps its members by providing expertise and advice in how to deal with environmental, legal, trade, marketing, and other matters.
Gales said that another one of CLEPA's main roles is to help suppliers get more out of their r&d spending, especially on an international scale. This is especially important because Europe is a net exporter of automotive technologies, especially in the areas of connectivity, alternative-fuel engines, emissions reduction and safety technology, Gales said.
"Suppliers spend more money on clean, safe, and connected cars in Europe than in another single market," Gales said. "Europe clearly has a lead in innovation."
CLEPA CEO Jean-Marc Gales says European suppliers are the global leaders in auto innovation.
Gales said it is also important to note that automotive suppliers are in a growth industry on a worldwide basis, even though the European market is overcrowded.
"Automotive component sales are up over last year's and will continue to grow," Gales said. "Suppliers must also invest more in production in some markets, such as in Asia and North America, and close capacity in Europe where the car business will be flat for quite some time."
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