Fleet Management Live 2017 is set to be a record-breaker in terms of event growth and visitor numbers.
It is expecting to welcome in excess of 2,000 members of the fleet and transport community for two full days of learning, sharing and networking.
This October’s event promises to be bigger and better than ever.
Those familiar with Fleet Management Live will have noticed some strategic changes this year.
We have entirely rebranded, including a new optimised website, to improve user experience and reflect the upgrade we have injected into the sessions, content and exhibition.
Building on the success of last year, we have focused 2017 on securing the perfect balance of visitors, exhibitors and speakers, representing all relevant areas of the industry across fleet and transport management, finance, procurement, HR, SMEs and more.
Intelligent Fleet Technology Zone: Technology will change way we work and travel
A new Intelligent Technology Zone will bring the future into the present as fleets review and test hi-tech equipment that could revolutionise the way people work and travel.
The zone will showcase some of the most innovative ideas in fleet and related industries and allow managers to take a hands-on approach to understanding how it might benefit their businesses.
Fleet decision-makers can visit specialist information pods manned by experts who will talk them through the latest developments, with a focus on vehicle-based innovations.
Companies will include innovators behind ideas and technology that includes autonomous vehicles and virtual reality.
Fleets will also be briefed on other long-term advances, such as last-mile delivery solutions, mobility as a service (MaaS) and vehicle connectivity products.
Among the companies in the zone is the Zipabout Mobility-as-a-Service platform.
This is a ground-breaking data aggregation and communication platform for the transport industry, which enables transport operators to gather highly detailed passenger behavioural information, predict service disruption, optimise capacity and deliver fully personalised communications at an individual level.
Also at the show will be training technology provider Edg VR. Its networked solution allows up to 35 participants to access bespoke videos, learning platforms and CGI.
Already, its educational content has been used by more than 50,000 students worldwide and its corporate training and safeguarding solutions are opening new opportunities for customers to reduce costs while allowing users to learn key skills in a safe environment.
Its corporate content includes traffic management, fleet hazard awareness, fire safety, working at height and site safety.
Starship Technologies, the company breaking new ground when it comes to autonomous commercial vehicle use, will also be exhibiting.
Driverless deliveries by road are being developed to answer the last-mile challenge.
Self-driving vans could quickly and efficiently transport everything from groceries to urgently needed medical supplies on the ground.
Parcel giant Hermes is rolling out self-driving robots in London, promising autonomous deliveries in the London borough of Southwark.
The company is partnering with Starship Technologies, which has developed a self-driving coolbox.
Initially, the trial will allow the delivery firm to offer limited 30-minute time slots for the collection of parcels, either for items being returned to retailers, or for items being sent by small businesses or consumers via myHermes.
Each of the new drones will be 55cm high by 70cm long and can move up to 10kg of parcels.
The six-wheeled boxes will move at up to 4mph and can be used within a two-mile radius of their control centre.
Immense Simulations will also be at the Technology Zone, where it will showcase its ‘first of kind’ simulation tools that deliver city-scale simulations that enable customers to predict transportation demand and supply.
It brings together a wealth of data sources and machine learning to deliver true insight into city-wide mobility.
Bluelight Zone: Show offers dedicated area for bluelight fleets
The unique demands of bluelight fleets will be catered for with a dedicated area at Fleet Management LIVE. An all-new Bluelight Fleet Zone, developed in association with the National Association of Police Fleet Managers, will provide displays and best practice advice that reflects the specialist requirements of the sector.
This includes stands and advice on everything from cars and vans to lightbars and high-visibility vehicle markings.
As part of the zone, exhibitors will provide specialists who can talk the language of the emergency services fleets attending the show.
They will be ready to brief visitors on subjects ranging from tendering processes and framework agreements to standard equipment requirements and employee training.
Chris Lester, event director, said: “Bluelight fleets play a critical role in delivering public services and the creation of a Bluelight Fleet Zone reflects their importance.”
In addition to showcasing services and products, the zone will act as a hub where bluelight fleets can share best practice ideas and network.
The bluelight sector has been undergoing radical change in recent years as forces have been forced to merge resources and look for savings in the face of ongoing budget cuts.
This year, the Metropolitan Police revealed it is to introduce 250 electric or plug-in hybrid cars to its fleet as part of a multi-million pound fleet renewal programme, accounting for more than a quarter of 700 planned vehicle replacements on the 4,000-vehicle fleet in the next year.
A key factor behind the increased use of EVs is a bid to tackle pollution in urban environments, amid concerns about the health impacts of diesel exhaust fumes.
The force covers more than 60 million miles a year and, because of concerns over emissions, it has ended its diesel-only policy so it can explore other fuel options.
Collaboration Zone: Collaboration will bring long-lasting benefits for visitors
A Collaboration Zone at Fleet Management LIVE will enable fleets to share ideas and develop new projects during the show.
The zone will be manned by industry experts and associations, who will be on hand to discuss fleet issues and help with making the first steps towards finding answers.
Among the participants is the one of the UK’s biggest and most influential Chambers of Commerce, which is supporting Fleet Management LIVE 2017.
The Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce (GBCC) represents more than 2,500 companies with nearly 200,000 employees, operating thousands of cars, vans and trucks.
By supporting the event, GBCC recognises the critical role of fleet in delivering business growth within companies, but also the importance of Fleet Management LIVE as a key event in the fleet calendar.
The motor industry plays a special role in the Midlands, as it is home to several car manufacturers, leasing companies and other fleet suppliers.
Paul Faulkner, chief executive of the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, said: “The Midlands is a key region for the motor and transport sector, so we’re delighted to work with Fleet Management LIVE.
“Our members are responsible for fleets that range from small to some of the largest in the country and we recognise the important role fleet management plays in good business practice.”
As part of its involvement at Fleet Management LIVE 2017, GBCC will be providing advice and support to visitors from the area and encouraging the fleet departments of its thousands of members to attend.
Chris Lester, event director, said: “Fleet Management LIVE takes place at the NEC and itself is a major event in the Midlands business calendar.
"I am delighted that Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce is supporting this event, which recognises the importance of fleet for businesses in the region and the benefits of effective and efficient fleet management.”
The collaboration zone will feature several new initiatives, including Breakfast for Beginners, a session hosted by the Institute of Car Fleet Management, which will focus on answering the introductory questions of new fleet managers, such as funding, legal responsibilities, supplier management, vehicle sourcing, insurance and maintenance.
Agility Fleet is a national provider of vehicle funding and fleet management solutions. Having launched its rebrand at FML 2016, the company prides itself on adaptability to changing markets and customer needs.
Agility Fleet’s sales director Lee O’Connell said: “Following on from last year’s successful rebrand and debut at Fleet Management Live, we are delighted to be returning in 2017 and building on a phenomenal 2016.
“Our customer-centric ethos of putting the client first and developing flexible bespoke solutions is why we’ve continued to gain new business in our targeted sub-500 fleet sector.”