Every two years these awards draw attention to the latest innovations shared by the show’s exhibitors. Prospective entrants have two months (April and May) to submit their most innovative products, services, solutions and concepts to the expert judgment of 80 international journalists.
GRANDS PRIX FOR INNOVATION AT EQUIP AUTO: RECOGNITION AT AN INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
A real indicator of success and distinction in automotive equipment, the EQUIP AUTO Grands Prix are recognised as a highlight of the show. They give visitors a taste of participating companies’ international momentum in terms of knowledge, skills and innovation.
Starting in June, the jury of 80 international journalists, experts and figures recognised by the automotive industry will assess candidates in 5 different categories.
NEW IN 2015: A “CONNECTIVITY” CATEGORY
The interactive relationship between the vehicle and the connected world opens up completely new areas of services to the motorist and their vehicle. It spans multiple ultramodern facilities dedicated to the comfort and safety of passengers and, increasingly, to new tools and services related to professional activity (digital data upload/download, connected materials, services and applications). Because of this, the Grand Prix is welcoming a new category in 2015: "Connectivity".
It complements the 4 previous categories:
• OEM / New technologies (dedicated to original equipment and technologies)
• Replacement / Retrofit (replacement, automotive parts and supplies for maintenance, repair, and retrofit)
• Garage Equipment (equipment and tools for workshops)
• Services / Service stations / After-sales networks (equipment and professional services)
THE 2013 WINNERS TALK ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF ENTERING THE GRANDS PRIX...
The awards have become a major media asset, helping to increase brand awareness and recognition of prizewinning companies. Describing the benefits of the awards, the 2013 winners highlighted 4 key themes:
• heightened visibility,
• internal recognition for the company,
• media coverage,
• commercial uplift.
Greatly increased visibility…
Romain CAMPMAS - BV CORPORATION - RECORE / Silver Trophy, After-sales & Post Equipment: “Very quickly, the news piqued the interest of distributors. When you’re not a large company, you don’t always have the means to launch new products on a regular basis, let alone implement an adequate communication strategy. Having one of our products win an award at EQUIP AUTO has brought credibility to the product, aroused the curiosity of our clients and given our business a turn in the spotlight.”
Olivier BERLIOZ - HUTCHINSON / Silver Trophy, OEM & New Technologies: “We are impressed with the exposure it has brought us. The EQUIP AUTO Trophy really helped us to strengthen our brand image. This distinction represents a real recovery for us.”
Jean-Pierre MARLIER - ONE TOO / Jury’s Choice Award: “When we present the Audiobox in a sales environment and we mention the EQUIP AUTO Award, we get an audience share of at least 80%. We are thankful because we now have the proof that Audiobox is a real opportunity, and very much needed in the market.”
Eric Giroux - SAM OUTILLAGE / Silver Trophy, Garage Equipment Category: “The EQUIP AUTO awards have a wide reputation in the automotive industry, a market where we want to develop. This distinction has opened doors, especially among manufacturers. It allowed us to get references. The PEA is a breakdown product which our customers are not yet familiar with, and the benefits are difficult to measure in the medium term. However, we believe that this trophy has given us visibility and credibility and we are seeing more and more requests for information about this product.”
Christian LALOUE - SNA EUROPE / Silver Trophy, Service Category: “The impact was quickly felt. The Trophy has allowed us to support the project momentum and we have had very positive feedback from all sides. Our ambition at EQUIP AUTO 2013 was to launch the Bahco brand in the automotive segment and this distinction really helped us.”
Internal recognition for the company...
Romain Campmas - BV CORPORATION - RECORE: “We immediately relayed this news to our manufacturer based in the US. Very proud that their product was noticed and rewarded at an exhibition like EQUIP AUTO in France, they communicated this to the domestic market and abroad, and as a result local importers in Europe approached us and now distribute the Repair Kit.”
Jean-Baptiste Segard - EP TENDER SAS / Special Jury Prize: “EP Tender is a young startup consisting of two people... This does not prevent us from being proud and thankful for this award today.”
Laurence Detrain - FEDERAL MOGUL / Gold Trophy, After-sales & Post Equipment Category: “We communicated about this award on several occasions; via our internal "Let's Talk" newsletter of which 120,000 copies are printed and which is translated into 10 languages, distributed via our intranet site and on display on our premises. Our colleagues were also promptly informed in the international press following the awards ceremony.”
Sandrine Trupiano - FILLON TECHNOLOGIES / Gold Trophy, Garage Equipment Category: “We quickly shared an internal release and published an article in our internal newsletter to inform our teams. We described their work around the Trophy, with visuals of the prizegiving ceremony; we were very proud of it and we wanted to convey that pride. This created a real internal motivation… a deep and dynamic satisfaction of belonging to a company recognised by the industry as innovative.”
Jean-Pierre Marlier - ONE TOO: “For us, a regional company, being distinguished at an internationally renowned exhibition held in Paris, receiving a Special Jury Prize, is extremely flattering and motivating. So yes, we let our teams know straight away. We even organised a little party to congratulate them.”
Guillaume Donet - SCHAEFFLER / Special Jury Prize: “We asked our production sites (Germany, China, Hungary) to reach out to all markets and to ensure that all teams take advantage of the commercial value of this technology to strengthen our presence in a promising market.”
Christian Laloue- SNA EUROPE: “We shared the information internally and in all countries where we operate. Consequently, everyone realised the importance of the solution and contributed to its development. This award is a great source of pride that we do not hesitate to remind each other of during our internal meetings... and of course the solution and the trophy are on display in full view in our meeting room.”
The media aspect...
Jean-Baptiste Segard - EP TENDER SAS: “We have certainly benefited from the media communication throughout the exhibition. That's how we got our few seconds of fame in a television report presenting the innovations at EQUIP AUTO.”
Yves Riou - FEDA (Federation of Automobile Distribution Trade Unions) / Silver Trophy, Service / Service stations / After-sales networks Category: “Press releases were published at the end of the show with a joint statement from Bosch, Spheretech and Air B. The effects were significant in the automotive trade press and continue to be. During the show we launched www.ecoentretien.eu, a website dedicated to introducing and promoting the process. In the press area, most articles that have been published about it are freely available.”
Sandrine Trupiano - FILLON TECHNOLOGIES: “Following the award, we prepared and distributed a press release to all dedicated media in France but also internationally. The feedback was huge, we were aware of more than a hundred articles across all print and online channels, as well as specialist blogs… the published information was even taken up by paint manufacturers themselves. Yes, there was quite a "buzz" and we are delighted.”
Jean-Pierre MARLIER - ONE TOO: “We benefited greatly from the audiovisual coverage at EQUIP AUTO during the show. We were also impressed that our innovation was explained on screen in several national news announcements. After winning the award, we issued our own press release which earned us numerous articles in the specialist press but also in the local press. And because of this we were selected and received the award for the most innovative company in the region awarded by Nice Matin in December 2014.”
Guillaume DONET - SCHAEFFLER: “A separate press release was sent to all relevant media, first in France, then in Europe and finally worldwide. This award supports our image as a ‘partner of the future’. Also we are delighted to have secured numerous articles mentioning the EQUIP AUTO Jury’s Choice Award, which is recognised as a true mark of innovation.”
A strong commercial advantage...
Sandrine Trupiano - Fillon Technologies: “At the time, we didn’t have any kind of brochure or sales materials on the product, but to promote it, particularly in Germany, we always mentioned the award to professionals from the vehicle repair industry. It was one of our strongest arguments, giving us true recognition and boosting the credibility of our product.”
Olivier Berlioz - HUTCHINSON: “As soon as we knew we had received the trophy, we set up an advertising campaign in the trade press, highlighting our innovation and the award. Emails were immediately sent to all of our customers to inform them. Ever since, we have regularly highlighted the distinction in our catalogues, sales brochures and other sales tools.”
Eric Giroux - SAM TOOLS: “We are proud to have been selected and distinguished by a jury of international experts in the sector. We informed our customers and we have highlighted the award in our business documents, brochures, booklets and presentations. This year, the EQUIP AUTO Award is shown in our annual promotional catalogue in which we list the company’s best sellers and new products. Six pages of the catalogue are dedicated exclusively to this innovation. And our sales forces regularly remind our new customers of this award. We have also produced videos to highlight the award during our seminars and
Christian Laloue - SNA EUROPE: “The BETMS concept is a flagship project and a high priority in our business strategy. We launched a large specific marketing campaign and we obviously relied on the award to lend credibility to the project. Our teams are working to continuously improve the solution while we promote the award. For example, we equipped each of our sales reps with in an interactive tablet that allows users to personalize a tool trolley. The EQUIP AUTO award is featured on that application.”
Download the press release