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SEMA Council & Network News: SEMA Takes 10 Young Executives on the Hot Rod Power Tour

Automotive Restoration Market Organization (ARMO)
Manufacturers' Rep Network (MRN)
Emerging Trends & Technology Network (ETTN) Professional Restylers Organization (PRO)
Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA) SEMA Businesswomen's Network (SBN)
Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA) Wheel & Tire Council (WTC)
Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) Young Executives Network (YEN)

Strengthen Your Company Through Community

No matter what niche you're in—rods, restoration, racing, restyling, reps, trucks or wheels and tires—there's a SEMA council or professional network that's right for your company. SEMA councils and networks offer members a variety of niche-specific programs and activities designed to provide educational and networking opportunities while promoting their particular market segment.

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SEMA’s Young Executives Network (YEN) will send 10 network members on the Hot Rod Magazine Power Tour this summer.
SEMA Takes 10 Young Executives on the Hot Rod Power Tour

By Lindsay Hubley

SEMA’s Young Executives Network (YEN) will send 10 network members on the Hot Rod Magazine Power Tour this summer as ambassadors for the industry and the network. These YENsters will represent different niches in the specialty-equipment market as they interact with tour attendees and visit schools along the seven-city, seven-day journey to share about their careers with the next generation of industry executives. The participants will also take the tour online through the YEN Facebook page, Twitter and other social media outlets.

With a dedication for cultivating young talent in the industry, YEN provides educational and networking opportunities for employees of SEMA-member companies who are under the age of 40. The Hot Rod Power Tour attracts more than 5,000 vehicles. YEN’s leadership believes the Power Tour is a way to engage these professionals and create consumer awareness by educating young enthusiasts about the diversity of the industry, and highlighting the variety of automotive career paths available in the specialty-equipment market.

"The YEN Power Tour is about more than hitting the road in your musclecar or hot rod; it's about forging relationships and making connections,” said YEN Chair Dan Kahn. “There are literally thousands of job opportunities in the automotive aftermarket for young people across the nation—we want to tell that story and show that in our high-performance family, young people aren't afraid to get their hands dirty."

Participants in the YEN Power Tour will be awarded a prize package, including hotel accommodations for the trip, airfare, complimentary meals, a gas allowance, an iON Air Pro Wi-Fi Lite, free entry into the tour, gifts from the tour and sponsors, premier parking at each stop and a variety of SEMA swag items. 

Learn more and apply today to join the YEN Power Tour as a participant. Applications will be accepted through April 11, 2014. All members of YEN are eligible to apply. Not yet a member? Join today.

YEN members are invited to register their musclecars for the Street Machine and Muscle Car Nationals in Pomona, California.
Young Executives Invited to Participate in the Street Machine and Muscle Car Nationals

By SEMA Editors

Young executives in the specialty-equipment market are invited to register their musclecars for the Street Machine and Muscle Car Nationals, and the first 25 applicants can receive free admission for themselves, their vehicle and a guest.

The event will take place March 22–23, 2014, at Fairplex in Pomona, California, and will feature a collection of high-performance musclecars, pro-touring cars and street machines for a weekend of festivities focused on vintage vehicles.

At the event, participants will be able to take a spin in their own musclecars on the Autocross timed obstacle course, enjoy cruising lanes, smoke tires in the burnout contests and more. Participants will be required to place their vehicle in the designated outdoor “YEN Corral” both days for the duration of the event; however, vehicles will not be required to remain on the grounds overnight.

Showgoers will enjoy a Miss Street Machine Nationals Contest, pro car builders, seeing their custom creations on display, live music and games, products, demos and displays in the Performance Midway. The weekend will give members of SEMA’s Young Executives Network (YEN) an opportunity to meet and network in a relaxed and fun environment.

Applicants must be YEN members for consideration. The network is free for employees of SEMA-member companies who are under the age of 40. If you have not yet joined the network, sign up today before sending in your application.

For additional information about this event, visit or contact Bryan Harrison, senior manager of networks.

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Visit ARMO's website.

Small Business Boot Camp Offers Coaching for Restoration Professionals

By Amanda Gubbins

Restoration professionals are invited to join the Automotive Restoration Market Organization (ARMO) for a discussion about some of the top challenges facing restoration shop owners over coffee and a continental breakfast. The interactive discussion will take place for the first time in conjunction with the Detroit Autorama, Saturday, March 8, from 8:30 a.m.–10:00 a.m. in Cobo Hall, meeting room 142A.

Sal Perez, ARMO Select Committee member and himself a restoration shop owner, will lead the discussion with other shop owners as they discuss what worked and what didn’t on their own road to a successful car-building business. Topics including time and materials versus job estimates, avoiding the price war by selling your brand, how to fix or finish someone else’s build, and what to do when a customer says, “That wasn’t broken when I dropped the car off!” are on the agenda.

The session, this year’s ARMO Small Business Boot Camp, is geared specifically toward builders and shop owners. Council members are encouraged to make the most of this opportunity to share ideas, compare challenges and solutions with other builders and shop owners in a relaxed, round table setting. Register today to reserve your seat.

For more information about the event or how you can become a part of the council, contact Jim Skelly.

Restoration Parts Registration Open for Hot Products Showcase

Registration is now open for the Automotive Restoration Market Organization’s (ARMO) Hot Products Showcase, which will take place April 23–26, 2014, at Spring Carlisle in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

This event is an opportunity for council members to display one or more products in front of one of the single-largest gatherings of automotive restoration enthusiasts in the world.

In addition to having products on display in the Hot Products tent, a professional photographer will photograph each one. The photos will be available to manufacturers and will also be used in a slideshow at the ARMO booth and reception at the SEMA Show. A gallery on the ARMO webpage also houses each of the photos, along with a product description for those unable to attend the event. This publicity is available to ARMO members for only the cost of shipping the product entries to the Carlisle Fairgrounds.

Product entries must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be the product of an ARMO member-company.
  • Must be available for sale (market-ready) by the opening of the Showcase, April 23.
  • Must demonstrate unique/innovative technology and/or be a benefit to the restoration industry.

Members can register products by filling out the online application. All applications must be received by April 18, 2014. Not an ARMO member? Join today to gain access to this event and other council benefits.

Restoration Professionals Gather for Networking at the Hot Products Showcase

ARMO will host a networking mixer in the Hot Products Tent at the Showcase, Thursday, April 24, from 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. The mixer will be a chance for members to grab a drink and spend some time interacting one-on-one with council leadership and fellow ARMO members. The council leadership believes this event holds enormous potential for new ideas and partnerships to be formed as members network with new and old industry friends. RSVP to save your spot.

Make Your Voice Heard at the ARMO Industry Discussion

This year, the council will also hold an industry discussion, Friday, April 25, from 5:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m. at the Hot Products Tent. The session will allow members and others interested in joining the council to voice their concerns, ask questions and offer input to the group. For members who would like to be a part of shaping future projects and events, this will be a chance to make their voices heard. Send in your RSVP today.

For more information about any of these events, contact Council Director Jim Skelly.

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Visit TORA's website.  
Every year, wholesale buyers from throughout the United States and Canada attend Keystone’s BIG Show Midwest to purchase a wide variety of truck and off-road accessory products, performance parts and special tools.

Regional Show Recap—Keystone’s BIG Show Midwest

Spring is show season for members of the Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA), with an abundance of opportunities to do business and meet others in the industry. Erika Garcia of Bolt Locks by Strattec attended Keystone’s BIG Show Midwest in Dallas at the beginning of February and shared the insight she gained and why this event could be a valuable experience for other TORA members.

Please provide an overview of the event.

Every year, wholesale buyers from throughout the United States and Canada attend to purchase a wide variety of truck and off-road accessory products, performance parts and special tools, and to take advantage of exclusive deals available only on the day of the show.

What is the manufacturers’ experience like?

Manufacturers display their products at the “Innovation & New Products Showcase” and take advantage of special sponsorship opportunities. On the show floor they use door prizes, in-booth happy hours and celebrity appearances to maximize traffic in their booths.

What stood out to you about this event?

Keystone’s sales representatives walk around the show with their customers making this a VIP experience for the buyers. After a long day of learning and shopping, attendees, exhibitors and Keystone’s staff headed to a customer appreciation reception where networking, cash prizes, hors d’oeuvres and cocktails were the highlight of the night.

Why is this event important for your business?

Dealers, retailers, installers and jobbers meet face-to-face with manufacturers to educate themselves about new technologies and product releases that the aftermarket industry has to offer. There are also many business opportunities for attendees as they take advantage of the exclusive show specials.

Have you attended a recent industry event that TORA members should know more about? Contact Clayton Drescher to learn how to share your experience.

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