Linda Spencer

What Global Customers Drive

What Global Customers DriveThe Ford Mustang, Jeep Wrangler and Chevrolet Silverado pickup were winners of the 2014 SEMA Awards, recognizing the year’s hottest vehicles. Does your company make products for those vehicles? Do you sell your products primarily in the United States? If you answered yes to both of these questions but want to expand your sales outside the United States, SEMA’s make/model data can help you get started by giving you easy-to-use information that will help you identify the best markets in terms of vehicle registrations. Through a joint program with the U.S. Department of Commerce and IHS Automotive, SEMA has complied the data into a user-friendly resource.

The First International Measuring Session/SEMA Garage

The SEMA Middle East Business Program group visited this impressive, fully equipped shop, which focuses on Mustang upgrades.Learning About the Market While Building Business

Forty-one SEMA-member companies participated in the first-ever overseas-based SEMA Garage, which featured an all-day measuring session for vehicles popularly customized overseas but not sold in the United States. The event, held at the Custom Show Emirates based in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE), was part of the four-day 2015 SEMA Middle East Program.

Dynamic Off-Road Market in China

Media Giant FB Life Provides Insight

The specialty-equipment market in China is booming, with perhaps no sector growing more rapidly than the off-road market. SEMA News recently talked about the off-road scene with Baokun LV, co-founder of and executive general manager of FB Life, a Chinese media giant and a platform for off-road enthusiasts and service suppliers.

The Mustang is Going Global

This chart, courtesy of Ford Motor Co., identifies the countries that will receive the new Mustang. Good News for Worldwide Enthusiasts and U.S. Specialty-Equipment Manufacturers

SEMA manufacturers know that the Ford Mustang is one of the most customized vehicles in the marketplace. This year marks the pony car’s 50th anniversary, and now it comes with a larger-than-ever attraction to those who wish to develop and market products for the highly accessorized musclecar,“ noted SEMA Vice President of OEM and Product Development Programs Mike Spagnola.

Global Media Awards

First-time exhibitor Rock Smasher, whose engineering team is shown here with SEMA Vice President of Finance and Administration George Afremow (center, blue shirt), was ecstatic at finding out that the company had won three SEMA Global Media Awards.Winners Announced at the SEMA Show International Happy Hour

Nearly 160 SEMA Show exhibitors were notified on Wednesday morning of the recent 2014 SEMA Show that one or more of their products were Global Media Award winners. Twenty-six international journalists sitting on an elite panel from 15 countries chose the products.

Receiving three Global Media Awards was “probably the biggest highlight out of a week full of highlights for WipeNew,” commented first-time SEMA Show exhibitor Wipe New’s Vice President Nick Naylor.

Positive Developments In China’s Specialty-Equipment Market

Demand Is Strong; Will Laws Be Updated Soon?

Seventeen SEMA-member companies presented their products in a two-city visit to China during the September 2014 SEMA China Business Development tour. The SEMA delegation had the opportunity to exhibit both in Beijing and Shanghai. The group was briefed by the U.S. Embassy and participated in networking events in both cities, where members had the chance to meet with buyers from throughout the country. Buyers attended the SEMA events from 23 provinces located throughout China.

SEMA’s International Vehicle Measuring Program

Offering Access to Hard-to-Obtain Vehicles What do a Toyota HiLux, a Ford Ranger T6, an UAZ Hunter and a Mitsubishi L200 have in common? For one thing these vehicles are known for being aftermarket-accessory friendly, are extremely popular with enthusiasts and are typically upgraded by owners who seek to take them off-roading. Another thing they have in common is that none of these vehicles are sold in the United States, but being very popular throughout the much of the rest of the world, they offer export marketing potential for U.S. companies.

Tips on Maximizing International Opportunities at the 2014 SEMA Show

Top specialty-equipment distributors and retailers will talk about the challenges and opportunities in their markets at roundtable discussions to be held November 3 (the day before the SEMA Show opens), in room N259 of the Las Vegas Convention Center. SEMA companies interested in expanding their sales overseas or wishing to gain a foothold in key international markets for the first time should start planning now to take advantage of one of the biggest international events of the year—the 2014 SEMA Show. During the first week of November, resellers from more than 130 countries interested in purchasing performance and styling products will be descending on Las Vegas for the SEMA Show. In fact, early figures show that 25% of all buyers expected to attend this year’s Show reside outside the United States, which is similar to the percentage at the 2013 Show.

2014 SEMA Russia Business Development Conference

Robert Park (far left), international key account manager for Rigid Industries LED Lighting in Gilbert, Arizona, described his company’s products to a large off-road distributor. “It’s great to see that the aftermarket customizing scene is alive in Russia and that U.S. products are highly sought after,” Park said.  Executives from eight SEMA-member companies traveled with SEMA staff to explore the automotive specialty-equipment market in Russia and determine the potential for products in that country of 142 million. There was some trepidation, given the current political tensions between the U.S. and Russia, but once in Moscow, the group was impressed with what they saw.

“What a country,” said Ed Rossi, vice president of sales for Injen Technology. “It’s full of rich culture, history and majestic sights. Injen Technology ventured to Russia with a bit of skepticism due to the Crimea takeover. We had reservations about how Americans would be treated in light of our contradictory political stances, but the people of Russia were...


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