The Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) says its members are optimistic after the first week of trading following the reopening of car showrooms. SIMI Retailers across the country, have reported steady flow in business, with an increase in enquiries for both new and used cars, and this should be reflected when the official new car registration numbers for the month May are to be released on June 1st. Customers should be re-assured when attending showrooms for test drives, with social distancing, car sanitation and other COVID safety protocols, all standard practice in SIMI dealerships.
“The Motor Industry like many other Industries has faced significant challenges over the past 15 months. To have all parts of our sector fully operational will help secure the continuation of many businesses, and safeguard local employment and the 40,000 employed nationally in our Industry. Recovery against Covid will clearly be driven by the vaccine roll-out and while we face considerable uncertainty, pent up demand and the accumulation of personal savings over the last year are reasons to be optimistic. It is hoped that some of these savings might translated into car sales, both new and used in the months ahead, while the removal of the inter-county travel restrictions should increase the level of vehicle service business across the National Fleet.”
Ms Fanning continued: “What’s become evident throughout this pandemic is just how quickly businesses have adapted to changing circumstances. Companies have innovated in finding new solutions, new channels to bring offerings to market and new ways to build value for themselves and their customers. The use of digital platforms has helped to accelerate our Industry into the digital space and online media has provided an important shop window for customers looking to buy a new or used car.”
Ms Fanning was recently re-elected to a second term in office, as President of the SIMI, at the organisation’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) held virtually. Gillian has extensive motor industry experience, serving as Marketing Director of national wholesale automotive distributor Serfac Limited, Chairperson of the SIMI Wholesalers’ Committee and as a member of the Society’s Management Board.
Speaking at the AGM, Ms Fanning thanked the members of the Society for allowing her the honour of being President and reminded members of the resilience of their Industry which she looks forward to serving again in the coming year.
Gillian Fanning has been a Director of automotive business Serfac Limited since 2009. Serfac is a leading importer and distributor of quality premium brand automotive products to a broad customer base which includes motor factors, vehicle distributors, fleet owners and government departments.
An MBA graduate of DCU, Gillian is an experienced business, marketing and communications professional with over 20 years experience in leading blue-chip companies. Her career to-date has also included communications, marketing and change management roles in consultancy and with Guinness, Diageo and Bank of Ireland.