IBIS Saudi Arabia National Forum Event Review

Saudi Arabia warmly welcomed the first-ever IBIS Saudi Arabia to the Sheraton Hotel and Towers in Riyadh on 8th November.

The Saudi Arabian collision repair community fully embraced the IBIS theme, format, speakers, and content, asking great questions during sessions and actively networking during all breaks. As Abdullah Almugait, Motor Support Unit Manager, Malath Insurance Company said, “So many people keep coming up to me and giving me business cards and asking me questions.”

The atmosphere was summed up by Mr. Ahmed Basmir, Sales Director of Gold Sponsors Kayan Trading Company LLC after the event when he said “On behalf of the whole Kayan team, I just wanted to take a moment to express our heartfelt gratitude for the support you’ve shown us in the IBIS event and the support for organising it to be held in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Your encouragement and assistance have truly meant a lot to us, and we are incredibly thankful for it. The feedback from our local market partners has been very AWESOME and really, they enjoyed every moment of the event.”

So, how did the day unfold and result in these reactions?

IBIS CEO Jason Moseley opened proceedings by welcoming the audience, introducing the theme for the day “Sustainable Strategies for Success”, thanking sponsoring partners and IBIS Ambassadors for their invaluable support in bringing an IBIS premiere to Saudi Arabia. Jason framed the context of the event in the overall strategic direction of IBIS around the globe. This was the final stop for IBIS in 2023, where IBIS brings a local focus married to international knowledge and know-how directing better outcomes for collision repair in Saudi Arabia.

Jason then welcomed IBIS Saudi Arabia Moderator, Robert Snook.

Robert told the story of how IBIS Saudi Arabia had progressed from the first discussions in 2019 to the stage that day, highlighting that IBIS was there because the Saudi community delegates attending the Middle East Regional Conference in Dubai had asked for IBIS to support the Saudi Arabian industry by bringing a National Forum to Riyadh.

He explained that the theme of “Sustainable Strategies for Success” would be discussed throughout the day in the context of the customer journey. He explained how the bespoke agenda, content, and speakers had been chosen to support the invaluable work the Saudi community had started, positively driven forward, and the successes it had already achieved, before closing by saying “This is your industry. We are here to support your plan for the next phase of development. You are in control; you will choose your future. We are here to help you create it by supporting you today, tomorrow, and forever, so welcome to the IBIS Global Community.”

The hybrid event then saw 25 speakers participate on stage and on screen in seven value-packed sessions discussing and debating Sustainable Strategies for Success for the customer journey.

The first session was Bodyshop World News, starting in Riyadh and discussing the launch of Fix Auto in the Kingdom, with the world’s largest Fix Auto site, before going live onscreen to some of the world’s leading bodyshops who freely shared their Strategies for Success, before coming back to Riyadh again to discuss United Motors vision of the future – which earned Mr. Abdullah Amro a spontaneous round of applause from the audience.

The next cross-industry panel focused on improving the customer journey and our collective accountability and responsibility to provide a quality customer experience, highlighting opportunities we can grasp to improve our claims and repair journey and industry experience.

OEM Outlook and Observations followed, where an all-onscreen global panel, including Lucid Motors, Electric Mobility Consulting, and Bakirci Group, advised Saudi delegates on the capacity and capability requirements to repair High Voltage, highly connected cars with Advanced Driver Assistance Systems in Saudi Arabia in the coming months and years.

Insurer Insights and Innovations closed the morning session, sharing vast insurance sector expertise on the forthcoming impact of AI on our industry and the path Saudi Arabia is on towards a digitised ecosystem of insurance products, claims processes, and connectivity that will benefit all stakeholders, including, most importantly of all, the customers.

Mr. Jeff Smith kicked off the afternoon with an interactive presentation on The Truth About Improving Efficiencies, where he demonstrated the opportunities, risks, and rewards that show up above and below you in the repair chain when different parts of the industry change. He highlighted how changes have a direct impact on other parts of our industry and how the winners measure and manage that to ensure success and return on investment.

The last section of the day led off with a discussion on bodyshop breakthroughs, where a panel introduced new products, processes, and equipment enabling operational efficiencies for all. These included bodyshop management systems, 3D parts and tools printing, blended learning, and low-energy, eco-friendly systems being utilised by leading Saudi Arabian bodyshops.

The day closed with the last session on handing over the baton, where a panel of leading people and performance experts from across the region showed how they nurture talent in their businesses, so the audience could implement their own actions to ensure we collectively leave our industry stronger and more sustainable than we found it.

The event then closed with the moderator’s closing remarks, which were followed by a warm round of applause from the audience for everyone who had contributed to the outstanding success of the first-ever IBIS Saudi Arabia. Guests then joined the networking reception, which followed straight on from the closing remarks, before departing at leisure to make their way home.

IBIS would like to thank the IBIS Saudi Arabia partners for their support, our Global partners 3M and Axalta, Gold partners Kayan Business Trading Co and Petromin Corporation, and Silver partners Cyber Automotive Solutions, RS Automotive Group, Spanesi, and XA Group.