• Meet the Buyer events
  • Meet the Buyer 2016
  • Innovation event with Meet the Buyer

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The UK’s supply chain is growing fast. The Automotive Council’s latest figures show that UK car manufacturers are now sourcing 41% from UK tier 1 suppliers, compared to 36% in 2011. Between 2011 and 2015, there has been an estimated compound growth of 32% in volume sourced from UK suppliers; and the annual turnover of the UK automotive parts sector has increased to an estimated £11.6 billion.[1]

There is still a continued interest and commitment from global vehicle manufacturers (OEMs) and now increasing interest from the UK’s Tier 1 suppliers to source more components in the UK and in response to these needs, SMMT hosts the Meet the Buyer events. These events are designed to match OEM sourcing demand to local suppliers and help to retain and build supply chain relationships. View the latest investment announcements here.

SMMT’s Automotive Supplier Finder (ASF) service represents one of the largest and most comprehensive databases of automotive companies operating in the UK. Used as the primary source to find suppliers for all our Meet the Buyer events, the database is able to define companies by the products and services, quality standards and plant capabilities.

We ask all buyers involved in these events to identify which commodities/services they are looking to source from the UK manufacturers. To view the 2016 event commodity list click here.  All of these events are by invitation only and we cannot guarantee one to one meetings.

We encourage you to check your company profile and contacts are up to date regularly by using the industry directory editing tool available from www.autosupplierfinder.com

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Venue: Automechanika Birmingham at the NEC, BirminghamMK Tron logo sponsored by

Date: 8 June 2016 (second day of the show)


SMMT announced it was to bring its popular Meet the Buyer event to Automechanika Birmingham in 2016 in partnership with UKTI’s Automotive Investment Organisation in continued support of the sourcing activities of both UK and overseas purchasing organisations, and encouraging inward investment in processes not currently supported in the UK. 

The 2016 Meet the Buyer event was announced as taking place at the three day Automechanika Birmingham show at the NEC in June 2016.

We were pleased to have MK Tron as our sponsor for this year’s event.  MK TRON is a consolidated metal technology and solutions provider. Its operations span across the Asia Pacific region and Australia, bringing a new dimension to product and service solutions.

SMMT has  now hosted ten Meet the Buyer events between 2010 and 2016 which has helped to facilitate over 2,300 one-to-one meetings with over 900 individuals representing over 700 unique companies from OEMs and tier one, two and three suppliers.

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  • Buyer participation

A legally vetted process drawn up by SMMT is used to gather the necessary sourcing demand information from buyers. The Automotive Supplier Finder (ASF) database of product and service terms will be used to check for supplier capabilities against the buyer’s commodity demand list and therefore we strongly recommend that you keep your supplier profile up to date throughout the year.

If you wish to participate in future events as a buyer, please contact us at supplychain@smmt.co.uk for more information.

  • Supplier participation

The event is by invitation only. We ask each interested supplier to complete a company profile online and express interest in attending the event via an online form. We’ll submit each profile to the buyers and they will let us know which companies they would like SMMT to officially invite to join them for a one to one meeting at the event. The expression of interest form is currently closed.



Innovation event with Meet the Buyer

Venue: Williams F1 Conference Centre, Wantage

Date: 27 April 2016 (Submit a profile to be considered by 11 March 2016)

Expression of interest is now closed.

The Automotive Council, an industry-government collaboration set up to improve the long term development of the UK Automotive industry, is committed to improving British innovation and premium product manufacture in the automotive supply chain. Through cross sector collaboration between the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Ltd (SMMT), Niche Vehicle Network (NVN), Motorsport Industry Association (MIA) and the Aerospace, Defence, Security and Space trade organisation (ADS) the Automotive Council has set out to create a community of specialist UK Automotive Premium Product Suppliers, along with developing a set of OEM approved guidelines/standards specific to the development of low volume premium product manufacturers, all aimed at making supplying to the automotive industry a much more simplified and robust process for low volume suppliers.

  • Meet the Buyer

To help build new relationships and engage with potential suppliers, the Automotive Council and its partners are holding an event on to bring together the premium product manufacturers and the premium automotive vehicle manufacturers including Jaguar Land Rover, Rolls Royce Motor Cars, Toyota, Nissan, Aston Martin and Bentley. The Meet the Buyer event will include a seminar session, exhibition area, ‘one to one’ introductory meetings with representatives from purchasing departments, aiming to connect innovative suppliers and potential buyers with specific requirements.

During the seminar there will be an opportunity for you to hear from OEMs, industry organisations as well as learn the support available for suppliers of low volume premium products and services. As well as attending the event manufacturers are invited to exhibit their goods and services at the event in the exhibition area (spaces are limited so manufacturers should indicate their desire to exhibit when submitting their Expression of Interest).

The information provided will allow the automotive OEMs to identify manufacturers that match their purchasing requirements and request a ‘one to one’ meeting to discuss how they could possibly work together.

  • Innovation show case

In addition, potential suppliers will have an opportunity to showcase their innovation, conceptual design or new product to a wider audience in ‘Innovation Stand-Ups’ sessions. These sessions will be conducted to a closed audience of OEM representatives from purchasing, research & development and design engineering. Attending delegates will be required to register their interest and will be approved before confirmation of attendance is issued.

  • Criteria

The event is strictly by invitation only and attending companies must meet key criteria:

  1. Have a capability one of the following disciplines: digital innovation, craft skills, interior innovations, high value materials, forged alloy wheels, communication, entertainment, lighting, smart phone interaction & apps, hvac – heating, ventilation and air conditioning, switch replacements, connecting home & car, exterior and accessories, new materials, existing materials used in new ways, existing product made from new materials rapid prototyping, sustainable processes.
  2. Be able to demonstrate a high standard of work and a willingness to achieve the industry certification standard
  3. Have a manufacturing or sales presence in the UK or be based outside the UK with an interest in investing in the UK


  • Draft agenda

10:00    Registration, refreshments and networking

10:30    Presentation

Opening Address – Automotive Council

The Automotive sector opportunity – OEM

Requirements to supply into the Automotive sector – SMMT

Support mechanisms for supply chain companies

12:30    Networking lunch served in exhibition room

13:00    Meet-The-Buyer, Innovation Stand-Up sessions  commence and exhibition continues

Meet-The-Buyer – pre booked sessions

Innovation Stand Up – pre booked sessions

Delegates free to visit table exhibitions and network

16:00    Close