SEMA News

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Cover Story

In every measurable way, the 2011 SEMA Show reached new heights. Industry professionals gathered by the tens of thousands November 1–4 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, eager to do business in a specialty-equipment market that is clearly looking up after several years of downbeat economic news. From the Show’s educational conferences to its special events and the activity on the Show floor itself, the energy and enthusiasm were palpable and inescapable.

Business Technology

  • As the co-founder and current chairman of SEMA’s Business Technology
    Committee (BTC), Bob Moore is also a tireless advocate for the use of
    standardized data and building a shared data system. He has been working
    in the automotive aftermarket since 1976 and is a partner with Jerry
    McCabe in J&B Service, a consulting company that specializes in the
    automotive specialty-equipment market. Moore is a member of the SEMA
    Board of Directors, serves on its executive committee and serves as a
    volunteer for a variety of industry organizations. He spent some time
    with SEMA News recently to discuss progress the association is making
    with respect to business technology.

Chris Kersting

  • We’ve been getting very positive feedback from those of you who were at the 2011 SEMA Show and are gratified to hear that this was a productive Show for exhibitors and buyers alike. Those who attended may have heard our core message behind the “Ideas Alive” theme: Innovation is not just for products—SEMA businesses must also innovate and find additional market opportunities.

Events

  • In every measurable way, the 2011 SEMA Show reached new heights. Industry professionals gathered by the tens of thousands November 1–4 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, eager to do business in a specialty-equipment market that is clearly looking up after several years of downbeat economic news. From the Show’s educational conferences to its special events and the activity on the Show floor itself, the energy and enthusiasm were palpable and inescapable.

  • The Los Angeles Convention Center in downtown Los Angeles was the site of the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show. Press days were very well attended by the media, with the majority of manufacturers announcing increased sales, new models and optimistic outlooks. We went to see what new cars might be on tap that would interest SEMA members and enthusiasts in general…and we found quite a few.

  • Each year at the SEMA Show, a handful of vehicles are dominant amid the thousands on display. There is always one car, one truck, one sport compact and one SUV or off-road vehicle whose greater numbers make them the most visible in the huge exhibit spaces. To celebrate these standouts, SEMA exhibitors honored four vehicles with the SEMA Awards for the Hottest Car, Hottest Truck, Hottest 4x4-SUV and—new this year—Hottest Sport Compact at the 2011 SEMA Show.

Government Affairs

  • Representative Sandy Levin (D-MI) has long been a strong supporter of SEMA-member businesses and the automotive specialty-equipment industry. This past summer, Rep. Levin welcomed the opportunity to visit SEMA-member company Motovicity Distribution in his home district as part of the SEMA Congressional District Site Visit Program. The program connects SEMA-member companies with their federal lawmakers and creates working partnerships that continue well beyond the visit.

  • Law and Order is an update of some of the most recent federal and state legislative and regulatory issues that could potentially impact the automotive specialty-equipment industry. These include issues affecting small-business owners and their employees.

Industry News

  • Gregory Parker joined the team at Perfect Equipment Inc. as North American marketing manager. According to a recent announcement from Perfect Equipment, Parker has worked with many of the industry’s top brands, helping with market research, branding, media placement and online consultation. Parker is also involved with SEMA, having served as the SEMA’s Young Executives Network chairman, SEMA Silent Auction Committee chairman, SEMA Pinewood Derby Committee chairman and as a member of the SEMA Cares and SEMA Scholarship Committee. Perfect Equipment Inc., Murfreesboro, TN; 615-916-3791.

    Radiator Specialty Co.—makers of Liquid Wrench, Gunk, TiteSeal and MotorMedic brands—changed its name to RSC Chemical Solutions. In addition to its separate website for Liquid Wrench (www.liquidwrench.com), the company announced a new website for the Gunk brand (www.gunk.com). RSC Chemical Solutions, Indian Trail, NC; 704-821-7643.

  • Land Rover Scoop, Ford Taurus Interceptor, Mustang GT, Fiat-Based CUV From Dodge

  • Aftermarket industry leaders hit the links at the 2011 Aftermarket Foundation Celebrity Golf Tournament—held on the eve of the 2011 SEMA Show/AAPEX—to raise awareness of the Aftermarket Foundation. The event, which took place at the Las Vegas Country Club and was attended by more than 144 golfers, set a new fundraising record by bringing in more than $350,000.

International

  • This is the second in a two-part series on the Middle East
    Market—specifically the market in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the
    five neighboring countries comprising the Gulf Cooperation Council
    (GCC), which are Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. A number
    of factors make this market of 7.3 million vehicles particularly
    attractive, including the high regard for U.S. products and considerable
    discretionary income. SEMA members making products for light trucks and
    American musclecars will find strong demand for those applications.

Internet

  • As significant numbers of businesses migrate to outside-the-enterprise
    services, such as cloud computing and social media, legal experts say
    they should consult with their attorneys to ensure that far-flung data
    is protected, trackable and accessible. Indeed, data generated by cloud
    computing is especially rife with risk, given that data is stored
    offsite and under the control of a third-party vendor—a vendor who may not be as awestruck over the importance of a company’s crown data jewels as its officers are.

New Products

  • The winners of the New Products Showcase Awards were announced during
    the New Products Breakfast held at the 2011 SEMA Show. The event
    recognizes the most cutting-edge automotive products either on the
    market or about to hit the market. Nearly 2,000 new products were
    submitted this year for consideration.

Required Reading

  • While the vehicles at the SEMA Show may be the most visual aspect of the annual event, it’s the products that remain the stars. Manufacturers exhibit at the SEMA Show to feature their products, and the number-one reason buyers attend the Show is to discover hot new products. Even the media come to the SEMA Show to see what new products are about to hit the market. Below are a few media clips that prove just how important products are to the SEMA Show.

SEMA Heritage

  • Yes, that is Honest Charley Card, Hisself, parked in front of his
    brand-new, 30,000-sq.-ft. speed parts store on Honest Street in
    Chattanooga. Hot Rod’s Ralph Guldahl traveled to Tennessee in late 1970
    to profile the legendary retailer, who had recently become the second
    inductee into SEMA’s Hall of Fame.