Success Story
Automotive Saudi Arabia United Arab Emirates

MDCP: Learning About New Markets

Men talking beside truck with hood up

Specialty Automotive Firms Go to the Gulf to Meet Demand

In late March 2022, the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) led a 50-member U.S. delegation representing 27 companies to the UAE and Saudi Arabia. During the trip, U.S. companies met specialty equipment buyers and vehicle enthusiasts from throughout the Gulf region while exhibiting at a customization show in Dubai, Custom Show Emirates. In addition, SEMA coordinated with ITA’s Commercial Service staff in the region for market briefings and advice on protecting intellectual property. A popular activity proved to be tours of several automotive shops in Dubai and Riyadh, where the products of SEMA members are sold and installed on customers’ vehicles.

As one SEMA member remarked, “The shop tours really helped me to see where our business fits into their market currently and where we could make some minor adjustments to have even a bigger impact.” MDCP award funds helped all of the U.S. firms pay for part of their trip.

Liz Couch, International Economist with I&A’s Office of Transportation and Machinery, coordinates ITA’s overall efforts in support of SEMA’s MDCP project.

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