The Global Fleet Management Conference drew attendees from five continents this fall to learn from global fleet leaders and subject-matter experts.
Attendees of the two-day conference in Phoenix that wrapped up Oct. 1 praised the event as comprehensive, relevant, and valuable. The conference is produced by Bobit Business Media, publisher of Automotive Fleet, and Nexus Communications, publisher of Fleet Europe.
"Overall, the conference was well-planned and executed," said Tiffany Whittaker, global fleet management leader with Chicago's Jones Land LaSalle, a P&G GBS partner. "It offered a nice mix of structured sessions to open networking time. The range of topics covered was very comprehensive."
Emil Gaynor, global corporate strategy manager with Jaguar Land Rover Limited in Coventry, United Kingdom, said the conference offered a good blend of attendees.
"The balance between OEMs, service-providers, and end-users was good," Gaynor said. "I felt that the sessions were well moderated, insightful, and interesting. I am very much looking forward to participating in next year's conference."
The event's sponsors included Chrysler Group Fleet, GE Capital Fleet Services, Jaguar Land Rover, LeasePlan, Mercedez-Benz, Automotive Resources International (ARI), Chevin Fleet Solutions, Ford Motor Company, GM Fleet & Commercial, and PHH Arval Global Alliance.
More than 30 percent of attendees traveled to the conference from international destinations, including France, the United Kingdom, Germany, China, India, Canada, Nigeria, and Brazil.
"The presentation on the South African market by Tony Elliot and the European market by Robert Patrick of Merck Sharp & Dohme, along with the presence of Pascal Vitantonio of ALD Brasil, and two other suppliers from the Brazilian market, gave the conference a more international flavor," said Guillaume Bourst, business development manager with ALD Fortune Auto Leasing & Renting (Shanghai) Co., Ltd.
For one attendee, the conference helped close communication gaps between Europe and U.S. fleet operators.
"Europe doesn't really understand the U.S. market and vice versa," said Tony Elliott, managing partner with Wren & Hawksmoor in Zurich. "I believe that there is a lot of misunderstanding and bias between the two sets of management across the pond (both directions)."
Several attendees said they look forward to attending the next conference in 2014.
"It was great to learn about some of the items that other people are experiencing from around the world, which are similar to ours," said Brian Tabel, director of marketing with Isuzu Commercial Truck of America. "I will attend the next year’s global conference."
The 2014 Global Fleet Management Conference will consist of two separate events. The first will be held in Brussels in the second half of May 2014. The second will be held on the U.S. East Coast in early October.