Cap World is a SEMA-member company specializing in truck caps, truck trailers and other truck accessories—or, as the company’s website proclaims, “everything but the truck.” Alongside a recent 30-year anniversary milestone came recognition from the Light Truck Accessory Alliance (LTAA), as Cap World was named Retailer of the Year for 2015. Each of those accomplishments explains how Cap World has stood out as a retail success story.
Derek Dobson, owner and managing partner of Dale’s Super Store, discusses his early days selling parts at swap meets, and the business philosophy that led to his current 2,200-sq.-ft. operation in Bradenton, Florida.
Before opening a brick-and-mortar retail location in 2014, Derek Dobson, owner and managing partner of Dale’s Super Store, traveled to swap meets up and down the East Coast and into the Midwest to sell aftermarket performance truck parts and accessories. Now operating out of a 2,200-sq.-ft. facility in Bradenton, Florida, Dobson has four fulltime employees, including himself, and one part-time employee, and he is in the process of expanding into a new 7,000-sq.-ft. building in Bradenton.
Ken Steele’s Solar Shade Truck & Car Paradise remains steadfastly brick-and-mortar in a day when online retailers are increasingly pressuring such business models.
SEMA News recently spoke with Nicky Fowler, vice president of fixed operations for Scoggin-Dickey Parts Center, about the parts store and the the company’s business philosophy.
Located in Covina, California, Bert’s Mega Mall has a celebrated reputation as the nation’s largest powersports super store. Originally a bicycle retailer, it was bought in 1958 by Ed Seidner, who kept the Bert’s name because he couldn’t afford to change the signage and business cards at the time. Soon Seidner was adding motorcycles to his inventory, becoming one of California’s first Yamaha franchises.
A longtime passion for off-roading helped motivate the Richmond family to launch Southern Off-Road Specialists (SORS) in 2000.
Velocity Automotive Group is serving up American performance in Europe.
Like so many small-business owners involved in automotive retail companies, David and Kevin Walker were enthusiasts early on. They loved anything with an engine, and they helped pay their way through college by working at a truck accessories store. That experience gave them a foundation in auto-parts retailing, so it was natural that they should start a store of their own when the chance presented itself. David was 21 and Kevin 20 in 2006 when they opened the doors to Custom Trucks Unlimited (CTU) in Auburn, Alabama.
Catering to a small niche market in Europe for the past 10 years, Velocity Automotive Group, based in Munich, imports and distributes parts from more than 500 manufacturers for American performance cars and trucks. This particular niche revolves around the Mustang, which is wildly popular in America but not nearly as common in Europe. However, according to Johannes Crepon, the company’s owner, the American performance market in Europe is still exciting because it’s so diverse. The customer base ranges from aging enthusiasts who have always dreamed of owning and restoring a vintage Mustang to Millennials who prefer late-model Camaros, Corvettes and Ram trucks.