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Exploring the future of Mobility at MOVE 2019

An interview with Dex Machida, Mobility 2030 Team Leader at KPMG in South Africa

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T he inaugural MOVE conference was held in London in February 2019. Dex Machida was in attendance and shares his thoughts on the event and on where mobility is headed.

MOVE aims to re-imagine mobility, bringing together thought leaders, disruptors and their technology solutions to dialogue with stakeholders across the Mobility Ecosystem across all modes and disciplines to promote collaboration. The premise behind the event is that new thinking and new action is required now because existing transportation paradigms are broken beyond repair and are often the cause of the problem, not the solution.


KPMG believes that the automotive, transport and wider mobility market is undergoing one of the most transformational social, technological and economic shifts of this century, in part thanks to the advent of electric vehicles (alternate drivetrain technology), autonomous vehicles, and Mobility as a Service. As the movement of people and goods changes and the demand for access-based mobility rises, various sectors will need to significantly rethink their business models to transition to becoming 21st century enterprises.KPMG was a diamond sponsor of the 2019 MOVE conference and Mobility 2030 is an initiative within the group dedicated to raising fundamental strategic questions for players across the mobility ecosystem.

“The event was the first of its kind, so I was unsure if my personal expectations would be met attending the event, but I was surprised at how rich both the content and also the experience provided by the event was. Most solutions presented at the conference were very IT technology focused, with most of the exhibitors showcasing solutions which fall within the category of cloud, analytics or mobile applications. I suppose that’s to be expected, when you think about the investment required for an IT start-up and also the time to market compared to say physical infrastructure type solutions like charging stations or renewable energy generation. For the first event focusing on a very early-stage, future-looking topic, it makes sense that there would be a large representation from tech start-ups.”

He says that compared to the propositions brought forward by other exhibitors at the conference KPMG was quite differentiated by the fact that its focus is on providing a strategic overview of expected developments over the next 10 to 20 years across the entire mobility ecosystem, rather than focusing on any particular sector or aspect of the mobility ecosystem.

Interestingly, he mentions, fuel companies known for their businesses in hydrocarbon fuels (such as petrol and diesel) were also represented at MOVE, as they seek to explore alternative energy sources and technologies, such as fuel cells to help diversify their business models.

“There was also interesting discussion around components manufacturing. For example, if you’re in an autonomously driven vehicle where you are a passenger versus being a driver, your concern will shift from driving performance of a vehicle to the environment within the vehicle that allows you to be more productive. The solutions provider that spoke about this was presenting active suspension technology that can improve the ride quality and user experience within an autonomous vehicle, which is a key focus to ensure the afore mentioned goals are met.”

Dex says the overall perspectives he experienced at MOVE were very positive about the value the shifting mobility ecosystem will offer. He was surprised by the lower levels of representation from Asia at the event, especially from China and Japan, given that China alone is responsible for a third of all electric vehicles sold globally on an annual basis. He hopes to see better representation from these regions at future such events, to ensure innovation in Asian markets is not overlooked by European and American players.

“On a personal front, it was great to be able to meet some of our colleagues at KPMG who are driving the Mobility 2030 conversation within their respective markets. It was also useful to gain fresh perspective. While mobility is a key economic driver and will affect every sector of South Africa’s economy, so being exposed to global insights was very beneficial in understanding how all of this global disruption translates into opportunities and risks for South Africa.”

Dex and the rest of the Mobility 2030 team at KPMG South Africa are working to help organisations across all sectors to prepare for imminent disruption. Contact him here.

KPMG Matchi has also been working to source emerging technologies in the mobility sector. To engage with us on your mobility needs or solution, contact our Head of Emerging Technology, Sashreka Pillay here.

 

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