Steven Lange, Director of the Leather Industries of America, Research Laboratory at the University of Cincinnati, will examine this topic in more detail at the upcoming ‘ILM Automotive Leather Supply Chain conference’ in Shanghai on September 1 with his presentation “Over-engineering of nature’s most beautiful product”.

The topic will then be expanded at the conference with a discussion panel led by a range of industry experts from across the supply chain.

Steve Lange graduated from Heidelberg College in Tiffin, Ohio with a BSc in Biology with a strong concentration in Chemistry. His professional career includes a six-year term as the Analytical Chemist for Chrysler Motors Chemical Division in Trenton, Michigan. He joined Seton Company in 1990 as Quality Assurance Manager. Over the course of 21 years with Seton, he worked within Quality Management from the tannery to finishing and cutting and wrapping operations. His responsibilities included investigating and resolving customer problems and creation and maintenance of the ISO/TS 16949 quality system. From April 2011 to December 2013 he served as the Corporate Laboratory Manager for GST Autoleather based in Livonia, Michigan. He joined the Leather Research Laboratory at the University of Cincinnati as Director in December 2013.

Discussion panel

A new feature during the 2015 conference will be a discussion panel among the speakers representing various elements of the chain, which will be moderated by ILM Content Director, Martin Ricker. The audience will be invited to put forward questions to stimulate discussion and debate during the event. The theme at this year’s conference looks at the balance an auto leather maker has to achieve between a natural feeling and looking material and yet meets all the required technical specifications.

According to a market report published in 2014, global automotive leather use is anticipated to grow around 10.5% by 2018. By 2020, China is expected to be the largest purchaser of cars, buying approximately 3 million units per annum (the figure was 1.3 million in 2012). Chinese consumers specify leather interiors for around 50% of all new cars sold, compared with a figure of around 19% in Europe. Car demand is also expected to increase for the U.S market, from 1.7 million units in 2012 to 2.3 million by 2020. 

Early bird booking offer: Purchase a delegate place by July 31 and save money! 

The half-day ILM Automotive Leather Supply Chain conference takes place at Jumeirah Himalayas 5-star luxury hotel, in the Pudong district of Shanghai, on September 1. It is located opposite the SNIEC exhibition grounds hosting the ACLE.

The conference is sponsored by TFL, BASF and supported by APLF Ltd. Trumpler sponsors the refreshments. More speakers and event information will be announced online in the coming days.

For more information about the full conference speaker programme or to register to attend: CLICK ON THIS LINK or email Maria Wallace to book your delegate place: