Founded in 2010, with affiliate office in the UAE and Saudi Arabia among its international locales, Glasgow Consulting Group (GCG) is a full-service business research and advisory firm with core expertise in market intelligence, market entry and trade development catering to a wide cross-section of industries. Among them, the automotive sector, with the firm now launching a dedicated research and consulting practice in the space for the Middle East & Africa region.
According to GCG, the move is aimed at providing clients with regional market intelligence, thought leadership and insights into the fast evolving regional sector, helping local businesses to identify the top mega-tends in areas of mobility solutions. Currently subject to disruption due to emerging trends and technologies such as ride-sharing and electric and driverless cars, the firm believes the Middle East is showing promise in both the passenger and commercial space.
As to Africa (a continent of one billion people where in 2014 there were barely 40 million registered vehicles) GCG notes that although still underdeveloped it foresees much room for growth across the value chain, including in the areas of vehicle sales, aftersales, assembly and production. Going one step further, GCG states that it considers Africa the final frontier for the global automotive industry, which finds itself under significant pressure in mature markets.
As an example of its regional commitment, GCG will during this year publish Passenger Car Market and Aftermarket reports for all of South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Algeria, Morocco, and Saudi Arabia, along with insights into the commercial segment in the Kingdom and a special report covering shared mobility in the UAE. “The ability to anticipate competitors’ moves and analyse markets is key to winning in the Middle East & Africa,” the firm states.
The new practice will be led by GCG MENA managing director Vishal Pandey, who has been with the firm for close to a decade after initially crossing from Deloitte in Dubai. Prior to joining Deloitte, where he spent three years as an engagement manager on the back of a MSc. degree in real estate and regeneration with the University of Glasgow, Pandey served in leadership roles for another international research firm and as a manager for commercial markets with Colliers.
Since joining GCG, he has been exceptionally busy, as a speaker, mentor, columnist, faculty member and member of numerous business councils and organisations, including currently the Arab-Brazilian Chamber of Commerce and as part of the tourism experts panel for the World Tourism Organisation. While at GCG, Pandey has covered a highly diverse range of sectors across the UAE, Saudi Arabia and wider GCC and Middle East & African region.