|Visit WTC's website|
By Amanda Gubbins
Joe Schaefer, president of Konig American, has been a SEMA member for his entire career and completed two full terms as a Select Committee member of the Wheel and Tire Council (WTC). In July, Schaefer will begin his term as WTC chairman.
Schaefer brings a well-rounded perspective to the council, having a long history in different facets of the automotive industry. His career began with NASCAR as a driver in the ’70s and was sponsored by a wheel company until an injury forced his career to take a different turn. Schaefer spent the ’80s running retail stores and is now involved in the factory side of the industry. For the past 20 years he has worked with Konig American, becoming president in November 2012.
As far as goals for his term as chairman, Schaefer says they are pretty straightforward. He hopes to continue to develop and carry out board initiatives that will improve the function of the board and council overall. He recognizes the importance of collaboration—within the council and with other councils—and wants to promote the SEMA Data Co-op (SDC). The SDC is a way to organize, manage and share product data, but also offers education and training. Schaefer feels the custom wheel industry has room for growth in utilizing this resource to its full potential.
Another goal is to grow a more rounded council. Schaefer has targeted a few groups in particular, one being members of the tire industry. “We need to make a big effort to get tire companies more involved. We need them on the board and at our show,” says Schaefer. Another group he feels is lacking in the council is the younger generation. Schaefer has in mind initiatives to break barriers and welcome new companies to the WTC.
Education is a large part of this effort. “We need to educate the youth market,” says Schaefer. “Education is the single biggest item we have to offer individuals [in the council].” Webinars and open meetings at shows also provide many opportunities for learning and collaboration. The challenge is in getting the word out about these resources and creating an excitement for all that is happening within the industry.
Most importantly, Schaefer cares about the future. “The reason I do what I do is because I believe in our industry,” he says. He hopes that other WTC members are just as excited to partner by donating their time and effort to keep moving forward and leaving a thriving industry for the next generation of manufacturers.
For more information about WTC and how to join, contact Zane Clark or call 909-978-6696.
Freedom Tire Distributors' Tom Hofmann (Left) and SEMA WTC Hall of Fame inductee Joe Findeis attended the luncheon to meet and network with wheel and tire dealers from across California.
1-800EveryRim.com Hosts Networking Lunch for Tire Pros
Hosted by Billy Eordekian of 1-800EveryRim.com,
a tire industry networking luncheon provided an ideal atmosphere for
leaders to discuss business and recognize a few of their own.
Among those recognized were Joe Findeis of Wheel
Consultants, who had been inducted into the SEMA Wheel & Tire Council
Hall of Fame. He was introduced by Wayne Williams of Exsell Marketing. Also honored were the late Bruce Scher of Scher Tire and representatives from Daniels Tire
Service, which had achieved 100 years in business.
Past California Tire
Dealers Association (CTDA) presidents
were acknowledged, including Paul Bobzin, who is also a past president
of the NTDRA—the forerunner of the Tire Industry Association (TIA).
Board members Jay Goldberg and Ed King were
recognized and then board member Scott Highfill of Great Western Tire
talked about the active San Diego region of CTDA.
Board Members Ed King and Eordekian, representing the CDTA, helped facilitate the
afternoon. According to Eordekian, “1-800EveryRim.com will continue to
support these events because it is always interesting and satisfying to
see the attendees intermingle and exchange conversation. This is an
opportunity for businesses to come together, share common experiences
and help promote the industry.”
At the end of the day, Eordekian puts things in perspective by sharing a
motto of 1-800EveryRim.com: “check, recheck, recheck and deliver—it is
important to guarantee customer satisfaction."
Among the more than 50 guests in attendance were: American Tire
Distributors, Bob's Tire Service, Capital Original Wheels, Commercial
Tire, Daniels Tire Service, Dapper Tire, Discount Tire Centers, Exsell
Marketing, Fairmont Tire, Freedom Tire Distributors, Golden West Tire,
Grand Prix Tire, Great Western Tire, ITDG, Jewell Tire, King's Discount
Tire, King's Tire Wholesale, La Canada Firestone, Leiniger & Short,
LKQ Keystone, Mountain View Tire, Parts & People magazine,
Pep Boys, Performance Plus Tire, Pete's Road Service, SEMA, Sunrise Auto
Center, Tire Dealers Warehouse, Turbo Wholesale Tire, Westcoast Tire,
Wheel Consultants – The Ultimate Wheel & Tire Plus Sizing Guide and
Wholesale Tire Distributors/American Tire Depot.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? WTC is!
Be sure to follow WTC on all of your favorite social networking sites. To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/wtc and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
WTC Column in SEMA Member News
Read WTC's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
|Visit ARMO's website.|
ARMO-member restoration products are displayed in front of 100,000+ enthusiasts in the ARMO HOT Products Showcase tent at Spring Carlisle, April 24–27, 2013.
The annual ARMO New Products Showcase at Spring Carlisle is now the ARMO HOT Products Showcase. If you have participated in the past, you know how much valuable product exposure is available through this event. Only now, the opportunity is available for whatever restoration product you would like to showcase (limit four per company); not just “new” products.
The event takes place April 24–27, 2013, in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and online registration is now open. Put your “hottest” restoration product directly in front of 100,000+ restoration enthusiasts at Spring Carlisle. Each product is professionally photographed while on display, and the photos are posted in a gallery on the ARMO website, so the exposure only begins at Carlisle.
This is available only to ARMO members, and is included with the annual ARMO membership fee. Don’t miss out, register your products now!
For more information, contact Jim Skelly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? ARMO Is!
Be sure to follow ARMO on all of your favorite social networking sites. To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/armo and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
ARMO Column in SEMA Member News
Read ARMO's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
|Visit HRIA's website|
Bob Shetrone, Progressive Automotive Inc.
HRIA would like to welcome Bob Shetrone, president of Progressive Automotive Inc. Shetrone started his business 32 years ago because of his love for hot rods and his desire to build parts for them. His passion runs in designing, building and refurbishing these cars. “Hot Rodders were the first recyclers,” he says.
In his spare time, Shetrone is currently working on a ’55 Chevy 210 Handyman wagon for his wife. His love for ’55 Chevy cars started when he saw the movie American Graffiti, which he has seen so many times that he can recite almost every word. For this reason, no one else will watch it with him.
Shetrone has been married to his wife Amy since 1992. They have two children—a daughter Taylor and “car guy” Sam.
Brett Littlefield's ’67 Ford Galaxie 500 fastback.
Brett Littlefield, Auto Meter Products Inc.
Another new HRIA member is Brett Littlefield, OEM, commercial and military sales manager of Auto Meter Products Inc. Current SEMA Board member Jeep Worthan convinced Littlefield to come work with the company 11 years ago.
When Littlefield isn’t making sales calls, he is working on his ’67 Ford Galaxie 500 fastback. He chose this car for its uniqueness—it's nearly 18-ft. long. He enjoys attending local car shows to show off his prized possession.
Professionally, Littlefield received his MPA from Northern Illinois University, capturing all major high-performance OEM platforms in Detroit. On a personal note, Littlefield is married and has a son, Chase, who is a Ford fan.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? HRIA Is!
Be sure to follow HRIA on all of your favorite social networking sites.
To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/hria and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
HRIA Column in SEMA Member News
Read HRIA's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
|Visit TORA's website.|
Affordable and effective online product training is now available through the SEMA Product Training Center on SEI’s website. The online training is designed to enhance and expand existing training programs, making product information available to virtually anyone with an Internet connection.
The Truck and Off-Road Alliance (TORA) and the SEMA Education Institute (SEI) recently launched an innovative, online product training program—the SEMA Product Training Center. A joint effort between TORA and SEI, this new program allows manufacturers to efficiently and effectively provide product training to hundreds or even thousands of resellers throughout the industry for what they might spend to reach only a handful using traditional means. At the same time, it provides resellers with an effective, efficient and consistent method of educating their sales staff. Sign up and participation is open to all resellers, free of charge.
The SEMA Product Training Center is designed to be easy to use and includes simple enrollment. For more information or to sign up for a training module, visit the SEMA Product Training Center.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? TORA Is!
Be sure to follow TORA on all of your favorite social networking sites.
To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/TORA and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
TORA Column in SEMA Member News
Read TORA's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
|Visit MPMC's website.|
MPMC members may now reference and download the MPMC Business Guidelines Manual from the new MPMC Learning Track on the SEMA Education Institute (SEI). Previously available only in hard copy, MPMC members now have this valuable information at their fingertips via an Internet connection.
Written, produced and designed specifically for performance product manufacturers, the manual addresses the many challenges such companies face. Definitions, resources, options and examples also are included in the various sections of the manual. Each section is written in simple details, making it quick and easy to read. Sample documents and verbiage are also included to help members decide which practices will be best for their individual businesses.
Chapters and topics include:
- Bar codes
- Catalogs and price sheets
- Cooperative advertising programs
- Debt collections
- Electronic Data Interchange
- Freight policies
- International business
- Manufacturers reps
- Minimum Advertised Pricing (MAP)
- Terms and Conditions
Go directly to the MPMC Education Track on SEI to begin taking advantage of these MPMC-member benefits.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? MPMC Is!
Be sure to follow MPMC on all of your favorite social networking sites. To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/mpmc and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
Take a Friend to a Race Fan Page
The MPMC Motorsports Awareness campaign, highlighted by the Take a Friend to a Race program, now has its very own Fanpage on Facebook. If you’re not a fan yet, you should be!
MPMC Column in SEMA Member News
Read MPMC's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
For information about MPMC, contact Jim Skelly.
|Visit MRN's website.|
SEMA’s Manufacturers' Rep Network (MRN)
hosts a discussion group on Linkedin for professional reps and sales
agents. Recently, MRN asked the question, “In one word, what does it
mean to be a sales professional?”
The list as submitted by members of the Linkedin group includes:
Join the conversation; join MRN at www.sema.org/li-mrc. For more details on how to get involved or to learn how professional reps and agents can help your business, contact Zane Clark at 909-978-6696.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? MRN is!
Be sure to follow MRN on all of your favorite social networking sites. To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/mrn and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
MRN Column in SEMA Member News
Read MRN's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
|Visit PRO's website.|
PRO leadership discusses ways to improve the industry during a meeting at the 2012 SEMA Show.
What tops the to-do list at your company? Are you looking for creative ways to win new customers and keep them happy? Hire, train and retain qualified employees? Gain a competitive edge in your marketplace? Expand and run a more streamlined and profitable accessory business? Every professional restyler and installer faces these and other challenges.
Inside the PRO Business Development Guidebook, you’ll find innovative, practical solutions and useful step-by-step guidelines and information to help you manage and run a more profitable and professional restyling business, be it start-up or an established restyling center.
Beginning with an overview of the importance of having a business plan—including tips on how to develop a business plan and the many purposes it can serve—the manual offers chapter-by-chapter strategies for creating, operating and maintaining a successful business. They include understanding the basics of business finance, the importance of quality and service and how to make them your business hallmarks, building knowledge and skills among your employees and branding your restyling business as a market leader.
Through the collective experience of accessory professionals, the Professional Restylers Organization (PRO) has developed this member-only resource (and many others) to help your business succeed and prosper. PRO represents the collective interests of all SEMA-member companies serving the restyling and accessory market—including manufacturers, warehouse distributors, manufacturer's reps, restylers and installers. As a member company, you can work with PRO to build solid, mutually beneficial relationships with OEMs and new- and used-vehicle dealers, participate in ongoing efforts to elevate the level of professionalism throughout all sectors of the industry, enhance customer satisfaction and have a voice on issues that impact the industry.
Accelerate Sales and Profits with Vehicle Accessorization
Does your current business model include dealer accessory sales? Would
you like to expand your portfolio by selling to new- and used-car
dealers? The Professional Restylers Organization (PRO)—a
SEMA council—has developed several business-critical tools that can
help you do just that. Below is an excerpt from PRO’s “Fast Track to
Accessorization” flyer that is provided free to PRO members and geared
toward helping dealer principals better understand how accessories can
increase their sales and profitability.
“Things are looking up. Customers are easing back into the market,
sparking slow but steady sales growth. But a measure of uncertainty
lingers. Fuel prices are spiking. Inventories are tight. Light-duty
truck sales are soft. Now more than ever, dealers need to find new ways
to maximize gross profit on every vehicle they sell and gain a
competitive edge with products that drive up sales and keep customers
coming back for more.
It’s all about implementing innovative strategies to attract new buyers
and create high-margin profit centers throughout your dealership. And
now is the time to discover untapped opportunities to dramatically
increase sales and profits—and earn your share of a multi-billion-dollar
market—through vehicle accessorization.
Consider the facts:
- Vehicle accessorization is big business; call it restyling,
customizing or accessorizing. The specialty-equipment industry generates
$28.6 billion-a-year in direct retail sales. And a notable 40% share of
the total market—$11.09 billion—comes from sales of auto and truck
accessories. High-profit personalization products your customers want
and that you could be selling.
- Accessories influence vehicle purchases; it’s a fact. Consumers who
see accessories on display at new-car dealerships are more inclined to
purchase a specific model simply because it’s been customized. Even more
impressive: accessories influence more than one million new-vehicle
sales each year.
- Consumers spend big bucks on accessories. Style-conscious consumers
willing to pay a premium for personalized vehicles typically spend
$1,000 to $3,500 per vehicle annually on accessories after the sale.
That leaves a lot of money on the table. Money they should be spending
at your dealership.
Consumers buy appearance and performance enhancements, mobile
electronics and custom wheels and tires. They’ll buy them from you if
you have them, or from somebody else if you don’t.
If you are a PRO member and would like to order copies of the “Fast
Track to Accessorization” flyer or would like to learn more about
getting involved in PRO, contact Zane Clark at 909-978-6696.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? PRO Is!
Be sure to follow PRO on all of your favorite social networking sites. To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/pro and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
PRO Column in SEMA Member News
Read PRO's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
|Visit SBN's website.|
Fellow SBNer Susan Carpenter has been working hard in updating the SBN members map, including adding new members and member location changes.
This map serves a great purpose. It allows SBN to find fellow members in our area so we can make connections year round. So check out the SBN members map and get to networking!
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? SBN is!
Be sure to follow SBN on all of your favorite social networking sites. To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/sbn and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
SBN Column in SEMA Member News
Read SBN's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
|Visit YEN's website
Did you know that YEN has a Member of the Month Spotlight on the SEMA
website and that anyone can be nominated? To view previous selections
or to make a nomination, visit www.sema.org/yen.
Are you on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter? YEN is!
Be sure to follow YEN on all of your favorite social networking sites. To find these sites, go to www.sema.org/yen and use the links in the top right-hand corner.
YEN Column in SEMA Member News
Read YEN's column featured in the March/April issue of SEMA Member News.
Join the SEMA Council Family
SEMA hosts 10 distinct councils and committees that represent
focused niches within the specialty-equipment industry. These groups
are comprised of elected volunteers (Select Committee) who guide and
direct council activities while representing the membership at large.
Although each council acts independently and represents a different
segment, they are all focused on the betterment of the industry as a
The value councils provide SEMA and the industry is beyond refute.
It is inspiring to witness a diverse collection of company
representatives, many of which are direct competitors, come together
and develop educational, training, youth awareness and networking
events that are, at the core, designed to give back and promote
business. An equally important council function is to ensure that
SEMA sustains a pulse on the industry and maintains a
presence with its members.
The question is often asked, “Why should my company join a council?”
The answer is simple. SEMA councils open the doors and provide you
exposure to industry leaders, decision makers, trendsetters and a
community of like-minded individuals who share your passion and desire
to see business succeed and prosper. Once the doors are open, it is your
responsibility to take advantage of the benefits by becoming actively
Learn more today.