At FLD, we know our clients, partners and associates in the fleet space can’t be everywhere all the time and that’s why we’ve kicked off “FLD Frankly Speaking,” a new initiative that keeps those close to us informed, in the know, and up to speed about the most important comings and going’s in the fleet space. For our first communication, we’ve overviewed the highlights of the recent AFLA for those who were unable to make it to this year’s conference in Pittsburgh. 

Thoughts on this year’s afla

The annual AFLA conference returned to in-person
attendance last week and the FLD team was anxious to share some of the key insights it gleaned at this year’s show

  • A preliminary (unofficial) count showed slightly more than 300 confirmed attendees—lower than the usual 400 to 450—proving that the pandemic continues to effect corporate travel. Less than 10%—or roughly 30 registered attendees—were no shows.
  • While attendance was lower than in years past, attendees were well-established fleet entities that were enthused, engaged and anxious to share stories. Just about everyone demonstrated a spirit of camaraderie that felt much stronger than at pre-pandemic conferences.
  • There seemed to be strong agreement that the industry has changed no matter what role a company plays, and that it is in “re-set” mode similar to after the .com bust and real estate meltdown. Everyone in attendance—while decidedly in the dark—acknowledged being in the same boat but moving “Forward Together” (the theme of next year’s conference.)
  • Conversations and sessions were dominated by talk of “doing more with less” as the chip and labor shortage—as well as ongoing supply chain issues—continue to hobble the industry. EV’s were perhaps the hottest topic of the week.
  • Conference sessions were well attended even up to the last day with attendees anxious and willing to exchange information and share best practices as a way of helping their colleagues—and in some cases even the competition—find their next normal.
  • From a remarketing perspective, most experts seemed unsure if the re-sale space will experience a hard or soft landing, but most acknowledged that higher re-sale prices were offsetting higher acquisition costs.

At FLD, we know our clients, partners and friends can’t attend every trade show or fleet event, so we like to keep them in the know by sharing insights and perspective gleaned by our expert staff, and our roving observer — “Frank” — who’s always got his ear to the ground and his eyes focused on what’s coming next!