People Places & Racing News

SEMA Council & Network News: Manufacturer Registration Open for Media Trade Conference

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 market-specific programs and activities designed to provide educational and networking opportunities while promoting their particular industry segment.

PRO Logo
Visit PRO's website.  

Learn How to Market Restyling Services to Dealers

By Amanda Gubbins

Building customers for life is more than just a slogan. It reflects a business philosophy—an attitude aimed at forging long-term relationships that give customers meaningful and value-added extras. According to articles in the automotive press and mainstream media, more and more auto dealers are investing in and relying on non-automotive amenities, such as mini putting greens, restaurants, coffee bars, children’s play areas and even beauty salons to attract customers and pump up sales.

Without a doubt, these are costly endeavors—way beyond the reach of even a well-heeled restyling center or accessory retail facility. But they are an indication of the lengths dealers will go to stimulate enthusiasm and set their dealership apart from competitors. And, they can serve as guideposts for restylers looking to brand their business as unique and take relationship-building to a new level.

Because every restyling and accessory center is different, and budgets vary widely from shop to shop, there is no one-size-fits-all formula. Whether you’re flush with money or working on a shoe-string budget, there are creative ways to help set your dealers apart from the competition and position your company as a market leader.

Learn tips and tricks in the “PRO Sales Training Manual,” a resource designed to aid in training your entire team. While it can be purchased by anyone for $149.95, PRO (and TORA) members receive the special discounted price of $24.95 for the printed copy. The digital edition is free for PRO members. Contact Clayton Drescher at to place your order today.

Back to Top

SEMA Show 2015 Education Session Powered by WTC and TIA

The Tire Industry Association (TIA) and the Wheel and Tire Council (WTC) have joined forces to provide wheel and tire sales and installation professionals with the latest tools and techniques to inspire customer confidence in the entire process. Participate in this TIA/WTC session and take the lead in your market.
Aftermarket Wheels and Tires—Right Sale, Right Fit
Powered by WTC and TIA

When:  November 4, 2015 - 10:00am - 11:00am
Where:  Las Vegas Convention Center, Upper North Hall, N252
Presenters Wayne Williams, Exsell Marketing and Chair-elect SEMA Wheel & Tire Council; Sean MacKinnon, Tire Industry Association, Director of Automotive Training Development

An informed sales and install team inspires confidence in customers. The Tire Industry Association and the SEMA Wheel & Tire Council are offering new and updated resources to support you in making the sale and completing the install. Equip your sales staff with the data-driven knowledge they need to educate your customers on the effects of various plus-sizing decisions on vehicle dynamics and provide your techs with the resources they need to correctly and quickly install aftermarket wheel and tire packages while maintaining TPMS integrity and accuracy.

Register for Aftermarket Wheels and Tires – Right Sale, Right Fit.

Back to Top

Visit MPMC’s website.

MPMC Media Trade Conference Manufacturer Registration Now Open

The Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) Media Trade Conference is a truly unique event that brings together editorial staff from all over the world with racing and high-performance parts manufacturers for three days of face-to-face, 30-minute meetings. Nowhere else does a manufacturer have the opportunity to meet with automotive editors in as many as 42 in-person meetings.

Exhibitor registration for the 2015 MPMC Media Trade Conference is open now through September 5, 2015. Only 100 spots are available, and participants will be chosen using a random-number lottery system. Manufacturers who submitted an application but were not selected for the 2014 event are automatically guaranteed a spot in the 2015 event; if the application is submitted by the deadline of September 5, 2015. Exhibitor selection is available only for MPMC-member companies.

Media Registration will open in October 2014. For media inquiries, contact Della Domingo at or 909-978-6723.

Not an MPMC member? Join today. MPMC members must manufacture parts used in sanctioned motorsports events, and all applications for membership are subject to review.

For general or exhibitor inquiries, contact Lindsay Bianco at, 909-978-6692.

Register now for the Media Trade Conference

Connect With Fellow Motorsports Parts Manufacturers at PWA Conference

The Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) will hold an open General Membership Meeting during the PWA Conference on Sunday, August 30. Open meetings give MPMC members the chance to connect with each other, meet the council leadership, and learn more about industry developments.

An interactive discussion will be included in the agenda, where attendees will share and hear from other members about challenges, opportunities, and strategies for the future. MPMC member and non-member motorsports parts manufacturers are encouraged to attend.

When: Sunday, August 30, 2:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m.
Where: Embassy Suites Anaheim South, Garden Grove, California
Room: Salon A

Register for the MPMC General Membership Meeting.

For more information about this event, contact Jim Skelly at 909-978-6690 or


SBN Logo
Visit SBN's website.

SBN Member of the Month—Victoria Newton, Digital Throttle

 Victoria Newton
Victoria Newton, Digital Throttle

Victoria Newton is the president of marine and motorsports aftermarket at Digital Throttle, located in San Juan Capistrano, California.

What does your company do?
Digital Throttle is a vertical ad network, providing online advertising through independent automotive, powersports and marine aftermarket-focused websites.

What is your position?
President of marine and motorsports aftermarket.

What is the most satisfying aspect of your job?
Working with companies to help expand their digital footprint—reaching new markets and measuring every dollar spent.

How long have you been involved with the automotive aftermarket?
I began working at Powerboat Magazine in 1994 and stayed until Source Interlink took me on in 2009, where I was until 2013 when I started with Digital Throttle.

What brought you to the industry?
I grew up on boats and was a competitive water skier in college. I always loved all competitive motorsports.

What are some of your major professional accomplishments?
I managed to become publisher of the world’s leading performance boat magazine, Powerboat, in an industry dominated by men. I was the first woman to hold this position and while maintaining this title. I was promoted to group publisher, overseeing all marine titles at the company. In this role, I managed all aspects of the magazines, including personally testing more than 500 high-performance boats and 200+ Personal Watercraft worldwide. In addition, I competed in the Catalina Ski race twice and various races overseas in Malta and Dubai.

Are you a member of any other professional organizations?
AWSA (American Waterski Association), PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) NAPW (National Association of Professional Women) WIPP (Women in Periodical Publishing).

Who are your industry mentors?
Warren Kosikov, Jerry Nordskog and Wiley Poole.

What is the best piece of advice you ever received?
Don’t be intimated by enthusiastic staff. Encourage and challenge your staff to grow and learn your job so that you can be free to climb the ladder and expand personal growth.

What would someone meeting you for the first time be surprised to learn?
Probably that the person who has taught me the most in life is my sister Nicci, who was afflicted with Cerebral Palsey at birth. She can’t speak, walk or hear, but she has provided me inspiration to live each day, work hard, play harder and always appreciate the small things.

What is your dream car?
Jeep Wrangler, totally dialed in for off-road adventure.

What is your favorite pastime?
Anything on or in the water.

Visit TORA's website.  

TORA Member Spotlight: AIRAID Filter Company

 Airaid Filter Co

Rodney Bertram is the creative director at AIRAID Filter Co. in Phoenix, Arizona. Here is his perspective on the company and its TORA involvement.

SEMA eNews: What does your company do?

Bertram: AIRAID manufactures and distributes high-flow cold-air intakes, filters and throttle body spacers.

SEMA eNews: How many years have you been in business?

Bertram: 16.

SEMA eNews: What is your company history?

Bertram: AIRAID actually started out as a mail-order-based business specializing in emissions-legal performance parts for cars and trucks. It was during this time that the founder, John Levitz, developed his first cold-air intake. As the popularity of this product grew, he was asked by performance resellers to supply them with his products. Eventually, Evergreen Performance became AIRAID Filter Co.

SEMA eNews: How many employees at your company?

Bertram: More than 45.

SEMA eNews: Why are you an TORA member?

Bertram: The truck-accessory distribution chain has long been one of AIRAID’s strongest channels.

SEMA eNews: Anything exciting you see happening in the truck market or in your company?

Bertram: We are excited to see that light-duty trucks will be receiving diesel engines in the near future. We are gearing up to offer our products for this new opportunity.

Display Your Truck or Jeep at the SEMA Show and Support SEMA Cares

By Clayton Drescher

At this year’s SEMA Show, the Truck and Off-Road Alliance will display several vehicles in premier spots between the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center and the new Performance Pavilion exhibition area. As the SEMA Show continues to grow and expand, the conduits between exhibition areas gain in visibility and impact. Each day, thousands of attendees will be exposed to this selection of impressive vehicles that promote the mission and membership of TORA.

TORA members are invited to submit a 2015 Display Vehicle Application and photo or rendering of their vehicle for display consideration. The applicants must abide by SEMA Show feature vehicle policies and eligibility requirements. Applications will be accepted online through August 28, 2015, and applicants will be notified of their vehicle's status by September 14, 2015.

Contact Clayton Drescher at 909-978-6696, for more information.

SEMA Garage FAQ for TORA Members

By Clayton Drescher

The SEMA Garage is an invaluable product-development tool for manufacturers, especially those serving the truck, SUV and off-road markets. Sixty percent of the Measuring Sessions hosted by the SEMA Garage in the last 12 months have featured trucks or SUVs, and the Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA) has compiled a list of Frequently Asked Questions about Measuring Sessions to orient new and veteran members alike to the services and opportunities available at the Garage.

Maybe you’ve wondered what you should bring to a Measuring Session or if you’ll have private access to the vehicles. Are the right people in your company getting all the Measuring Session notifications and are they aware of the digital data available through Tech Transfer? These questions and more are answered in the SEMA Garage FAQ.

Visit the FAQ webpage and to learn more.

Back to Top

Visit MRN's website.  

Earn Up to $600 in Two Easy Steps

Manufacturers’ reps have a new opportunity to partner with the SEMA Data Co-op (SDC) for a special incentive. Between now and September 2, 2015, reps who refer new suppliers to the SDC can earn a cash reward of anywhere between $150–$600.

The first step for reps is to start a conversation with their manufacturer clients about the benefits of selling more parts with data and the solutions that the SDC offers to help them manage and distribute great product data. Next, visit the SDC incentive page and complete the form by September 2. An SDC employee will follow up with each supplier to begin the on-boarding process.

As long as the supplier is referred during the incentive period and on-boarded by November 27, 2015, the referring rep will receive a check in the amount of that supplier’s first month’s dues. These checks are issued to individual reps, not SEMA-member companies.

For reps who need a little preparation for these discussions, training is available through the MRN Certification Program. The web-based educational series helps manufacturers’ representatives learn more about what the SDC offers through courses designed to build confidence in discussing the data-management system with customers. Contact SDC Director of Membership Jim Graven at to sign up.

Visit to learn more about the MRN SDC Incentive program and start earning rewards today.

Back to Top