While the US and Western European automotive industry was stagnating in the last decade, the Eastern European manufacturing was boosting, and today the Eastern European automotive output can be compared to the size of German car industry. It opens a lot of opportunities for newbies.Economic development agencies
|OEMs in Central- and Eastern Europe. Map: Manufacturing Hungary Blog|
When it's about business development, most of CEE countries has a dedicated governmental agency to support the process. Hungary traditionally has a strong focus on automotive suppliers, so the governmental agency HIPA's Supplier Center organizes networking events and Supplier Club, has a data bank and e-market service. In the Czech Republic, the governmental investment promotion agency CzechInvest provides not just overview and contact to key industry players, but a great Automotive Supplier Database. The Slovakian SARIO and the Polish PaiZ have excellent sectoral studies.
Industry associations and clusters
Clusters, the local automotive eco-systems also have a great access to market networks. Hungary's PANAC (Audi, Suzuki, Opel) and AIPA (Mercedes) clusters are the legal organizations of local supplier pyramids. In the Czech Republic, the MAK (Hyundai, Toyota, Skoda) is the leading automotive cluster, while it's the AKS in Slovakia.
The leading automotive industry associations like the czech AIA, the Hungarian MAGE, the Polish PZPM and the Slovakian ZAP also have excellent networks and governmental connections.
Agencies and associations have industry events, but there are some unique automotive industry events which stand out the crowd. Automotive Hungary in every October is the #1 industry event of the country, organized in the capital city Budapest. AutoTec and AutoSalon Brno are the largest automotive expos in the Czech Republic. The biggest automotive trade fair in Poland is Motor Show Poznan.
Step beyond supply
When seeking opportunities in Eastern European automotive industry do not forget about the option of local manufacturing. The regional auto industry is boosting because of the world-class infrastructure, the closeness of European markets, the flexible and low-cost local labour markets. And when it's about manufacturing, you can get great governmental incentives:
Do you have any question or comment? Do not hesitate to share it - publicly or privately.