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Wheel and Tire Pros Share Sales Tips, Product Knowledge at SEMA Learn & Show

WTC's Learn & Show afforded the opportunity for wheel and tire manufacturers to display their products.

The inaugural Wheel & Tire Council (WTC) Learn & Show, held February 9, 2011, at SEMA’s Diamond Bar offices, offered three educational sessions and provided opportunities for industry leaders and peers to network and display their products. These sessions identified industry-specific challenges, sales strategies and profit-building techniques and also highlighted installer training.

Additionally, the one-day event consisted of an open meeting that allowed attendees the opportunity to participate, voice their concerns and help drive council initiatives.

Led by Russ Fuller of Revolution Supply Co. and Ed Jones of Bartec USA, the first session, entitled “TPMS – Myths and Facts,” discussed tire-pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) use, pitfalls and ways in which to profit.

“Our first showcase was a great success,” said Fuller. “WTC is committed to delivering value to all SEMA members and the end customer—the retail tire store. This conference delivered valuable education and information to all attendees. WTC looks forward to delivering more of the same throughout the year and at next year’s conference and showcase.”

The Tire Industry Association (TIA) sponsored the second session, entitled “Training Resources for Retail Tire Technicians,” in which Sean MacKinnon, TIA's director of automotive training development, discussed all aspects of automotive tire service. He also introduced TIA's Certified Automotive Tire Service (ATS) training program, which covered topics ranging from personal protective equipment and general shop safety practices to TPMS diagnostics.

“I found the WTC Learn & Show to be an excellent experience,” said MacKinnon. “The willingness of all attendees to exchange information in order to build a more positive industry was amazing to see. I am looking forward to being a part of many more and am thrilled that I was able to be a part of the inaugural SEMA WTC Learn & Show.”

In the third session, entitled “Hear What the Pros Think!” attendees listened to industry leaders as they provided their unique perspective on the industry and the potential trends that will shape the future. Presenters included Myles Kovacs, DUB magazine founder and president; Rich Botello, Explorer Competition; and Brock Weld, BMF Wheels.

“I thought the WTC Learn & Show conference was a valuable resource for any retailer trying to make money in this economic environment,” said Weld. “To have industry leaders share their thoughts collectively in an informal setting is both uncommon and valuable for anyone in the wheel and tire industry.”

The educational sessions ran concurrently with the Product Showcase, which featured exhibits highlighting new products, business services and equipment. There were also some cool cars on display.

“It's a true honor to be selected to participate in the first annual SEMA WTC show panel; sitting in the same room with industry giants is always an exciting time,” said Kovacs. “SEMA events always remind me just how powerful of an industry we have, and we all need to band together for the betterment of our entire industry.”

Exhibitors included:

American Tire Distributors
Bartec USA
Konig American
Mickey Thompson Performance Tires & Wheels
Nitto Tire USA
Prestige Autotech Corp.
Revolution Supply Co.
Tire Industry Association
Ultra Wheel
Vision Wheel
Wheel Consultants
Wheel Pros

truck car
A custom Ford F-150 fitted with Mickey Thompson Performance Tires & Wheels was on display. A custom Mazda RX-8 Formula Drift car sporting Nitto tires also was on display.
A Product Showcase highlighted new products, business services and equipment.
The event offered opportunities for industry leaders and peers to network and display their products.
class panel
The inaugural WTC Learn & Show featured three educational sessions. Industry panelists included (L-R): Ron Bergenholtz, Bergenholtz Racing; Myles Kovacs, DUB magazine; Rich Botello, Explorer Competition; Brock Weld, BMF Wheels; and Joe Schaefer, Konig Wheels.