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Automotive Engineer Edward Hightower Joins Kiira Motors

Hightower is the Managing Director of Motoring Ventures, an investment, growth, strategy, and operations advisory firm focused on driving value plus impact in automotive and manufacturing businesses around the world. He has worked in developing automobile products for the last 10 years in China, India, Brazil, South Korea and Mexico.
Edward Hightower

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Celebrated global automotive engineer Edward Hightower is joining Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC), the makers of Africa’s first zero emissions electric traction bus - the Kayoola Solar Bus, as the company’s Automotive Industry Advisor.

Hightower is the Managing Director of Motoring Ventures, an investment, growth, strategy, and operations advisory firm focused on driving value plus impact in automotive and manufacturing businesses around the world. He has worked in developing automobile products for the last 10 years in China, India, Brazil, South Korea and Mexico.

He will now be responsible for providing technical advice, expertise, coach and mentor the Kiira Motors Corporation Team to define, develop and implement the most appropriate strategy to identify and address Regional and African Continental Market Opportunities; Commercial and Product Strategies; Supply Chain Localization; and Investor Attraction and Sounding.  

He will also work closely with the Kiira Motors Corporation Team to build capacity human resources, Product brands, Plant efficiency, and Mobility Infrastructure and Policy formulation with the ultimate goal of growing Kira Motors Corporation into a sustainably profitable business.

According to Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC) Information Systems Manager Simon Peter Miyingo, Eng. Edward Hightower will work closely with the KMC management to develop the automobile industry in Uganda, East Africa and the diaspora.

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Kiira Motors says that Hightower comes with a wealth of automotive industry expertise and experience having served in several new-product design and engineering, strategy, brand marketing, and senior executive roles between Ford, BMW, and GM.

"He led GM’s USD 15 billion global crossovers business as the Executive Chief Engineer and Vehicle Line Executive, where he led the team that planned and developed the Cadillac XT5, GMC Acadia, Chevrolet Traverse and Blazer, Buick Enclave, Holden Acadia, and other platform variants. These vehicles are sold in over 150 markets around the world. ,” the statement reads.

Hightower told a virtual briefing that he made the decision to work with Uganda’s pioneer car manufacture because he believed there is a big local market for the automotive industry in Uganda and Africa, the right government policy and legal framework.

“I will use my experience and vast networks to help KMC forge the right technical partnerships, leverage  the local resources to develop and produce a whole range of vehicle components  and work on the company’s product strategy and planning,” he said.

Eng. Edward Higtower says developing the automobile value chain will aim to identify a value proposition to build for export and the local market. But he hastens to add that this will depend on how the team works together to figure out what works out for KMC and its products. 

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According to Eng. Edward Hightower, an automobile has close to 30,000 parts which should be made where Uganda’s automobile market is located, creating a 45 per cent employment increase in the manufacturing sector alone.

Recent data suggests that of the 97 million vehicles that are produced globally, Africa only produced 1.1 million per year. But Edward Hightower believes that The African continent has the potential to be the leading car manufacturing hub for local and global markets.

The Kiira Vehicle Plant  start-up facility is expected to produce up to 22 vehicles a day and  5,000 vehicles a year. Construction of the Kiira Vehicle Plant started  in February 2019 and is being, undertaken by the UPDF Engineering Brigade through the National Enterprise Corporation (NEC).

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