SEMA News

Cover Story

Each year, the SEMA Installation Gala gathers the industry together to thank outgoing SEMA Board of Directors members, install newly elected leaders and celebrate the association’s latest Hall of Fame inductees. In addition, daytime events leading up to the banquet include high-level Board and council discussions along with a heavy dose of fundraising for SEMA Cares, the association’s charity initiative. This year, the historic Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles played host to the July 24 events, with the evening’s gala emceed by the legendary “Voice of the NHRA,” Dave McClelland.

Business

  • Private LabelingEfficiency is paramount to manufacturing companies. Exploiting the full capacity of available tooling and resources maximizes bottom-line profits. For some companies, peak efficiency is derived from adding a private-labeling operation to their product offerings.

  • SEMA News annually canvasses the leaders of the association’s councils and networks for the December issue to seek their views about how the industry is shaping up for the coming year. The chairs of each group provide responses based on what their organizations and their companies are seeing within their marketplaces. Their responses provide helpful insights for businesses in every segment of the marketplace.

  • Photo RightsNearly every company’s marketing arm produces or purchases photographs and video to advertise its products or services. While obtaining photos and video has become relatively easy in today’s digitized world, making sure you have the rights to use and publish this media is crucial. This article runs through some important considerations for your company’s use of photographs and video. For simplicity’s sake, the text mentions only “photos” and “photographers,” but the information is also applicable to video and videographers.

  • SEMA Garage Photo Studio“The return on investment in quality images and videos is well worth the time,” said Craig Schmutzler, director of member support for the SEMA Data Co-op (SDC), which encourages all SEMA manufacturers to enhance their product data for improved sales. “But our members are busy, and it is challenging to find the time to get everything done that is necessary to grow and maintain a business.”

Business Technology

  • SEMA Data Co-opSince inception in 2012, more than 400 product brands representing more than four million parts have joined what is now the industry’s largest automotive specialty parts product data repository, the SEMA Data Co-op (SDC). Designed to enable any company, no matter how small or large, to effectively manage and distribute its product data at the lowest possible cost, the SDC’s expert staff is at the ready to turn your company into a lean, mean, data-management machine!

  • SEMA SearchInformation is the key to sales. Automotive parts resellers—distributors, retailers and e-commerce dealers—need accurate information about product attributes such as weights and measures, descriptions, current pricing, UPC codes and more in order to power their lookup tools and point-of-sale systems. The SEMA Data Co-op (SDC) was created as a product-data repository to supply that information and more to the automotive specialty parts marketplace.

Chris Kersting

  • Chris KerstingThe idea of an industry-owned product-information data repository, run like a utility company for the benefit of the industry, was a topic of discussion at SEMA for many years. Then, as web searches increasingly became a driving factor behind sales growth, the need for high-quality product data to power wholesale, retail and web-based business systems became more obvious. And the benefits to specialty parts manufacturers—improving speed to market and providing information capable of driving consumer purchase decisions—became “must-have” capabilities linked to success in the marketplace.

Events

  • Pinewood Race CarThe 2015 Pinewood Builders Challenge, previously held every summer during SEMA’s Installation Gala, featured two major changes. Five of the nation’s premier custom-car builders crafted miniature pinewood hot rods that raced head to head last August at the National Street Rod Association (NSRA) Street Rod Nationals in Louisville, Kentucky. In addition to the Builders Challenge, a Manufacturers Shootout was held for the first time ever for eight participating members of the Hot Rod Industry Alliance (HRIA).

  • Hot Rodders of TomorrowNow in its eighth year of existence, Hot Rodders of Tomorrow (HROT) enables young automotive enthusiasts to develop and show off their mechanical skills while being exposed to the automotive specialty-equipment industry.

From The Hill

  • From the HillSEMA-member companies recently made connections with their elected representatives. As a result of a visit to air-conditioning manufacturer Vintage Air last summer, U.S. Representative Lamar Smith (R-TX) agreed to co-sponsor the Low Volume Vehicle Manufacturers Act of 2015. Vintage Air executives Jack Chisenhall and Rick Love were able to catch up with Rep. Smith in San Antonio to say thank you.

Government Affairs

  • Hawaii EthanolThe laws and regulations that govern how SEMA members do business have a continuous impact on the way automotive specialty-equipment products are made, distributed and marketed. The charge of the SEMA government affairs office is to stay on top of relevant state and federal legislation and regulations and advocate industry positions to ensure the best possible outcome for the membership. The following are just a few examples of critical legislative/regulatory successes the SEMA government affairs team was involved in this year.

Industry News

  • ’17 Camaro ZL1

    Likely to be powered by the LT4 supercharged 6.2L V8, the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 was spied at Germany’s Nürburgring.

    FCA-Badged Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat

    In addition to the FCA badge, this Hellcat flaunts a distinctive new red-white-blue color scheme using navy stripes over the car, matching navy wheels, and red mirror caps and trim around the grille.

     

    ’17 Ford F-350 Super Duty

     

    The ’17 Ford Super Duty F-250 and F-350 are expected to get more modern with aluminum construction in the cab and bed, using lessons learned from the ’15 F-150.

  • Industry news from SEMA-member companies, including AP Exhaust Technologies LLC, Luken Communications, ColorBond, QA1, Holley Performance Products and more.

  • Approximately 215 local high-school and college students, eager to receive career guidance, attended Automotive Career Day on September 17 at Cypress College in Cypress, California. SEMA-member speakers volunteered their time to help students make connections between their interests and automotive career fields.

International

  • SEMA Garage International Measuring SessionTwenty-one SEMA-member companies recently traveled to Shanghai, China, for the 2015 SEMA China Business Development Program, which included meetings with U.S. government officials in the area, tours of customizing shops, including a new shop that focuses on upgrading and distributing parts solely for Mustangs, Corvettes and other U.S. late-model musclecars, exhibiting in the SEMA section at the sold-out China Auto Salon (CAS) and, for the first time, participating in a measuring session featuring the winning vehicles in a SEMA-conducted survey of top customized vehicles in China that are not available in the United States.

Internet

  • Email MarketingMarketers looking for a reliable, state-of-the-art e-mail marketing solution have a ready resource: Capterra’s (www.capterra.com) 2015 list of the top five solutions on the market. Capterra specializes in advising businesses on the best software to buy. Heading the pack for e-mail marketing solutions is MailChimp, one of the pioneers in the industry, followed by Constant Contact, Vertical Response, Campaign Monitor and Get Response.

  • Windows 10 ScreenWindows 10’s official release mid-summer was greeted with mostly well-deserved glowing reviews, but business users need to tread carefully before powering it up for the first time. The reason: Amid many great improvements, Microsoft has auto-programmed the newest version of its operating system to vacuum up as much of your personal data as possible and even listen in on your PC’s microphone.

  • Marketers looking to manage all of their social-media campaigns from a single dashboard have some good news from Forrester (www.forrester.com): The market-research firm did all the legwork for you.

New Products

People And Places

  • SEMA Board of DirectorsBBA Board of Directors, elected by the trade association’s membership at large, governs SEMA. Board members serve three-year terms, with the chairman-elect automatically assuming the role of chairman after completing his or her two-year term. The 2015–2016 Board pictured here was recently empaneled at the annual SEMA Installation Gala, held July 24, 2015, at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles.

  • Each year, the SEMA Installation Gala gathers the industry together to thank outgoing SEMA Board of Directors members, install newly elected leaders and celebrate the association’s latest Hall of Fame inductees. In addition, daytime events leading up to the banquet include high-level Board and council discussions along with a heavy dose of fundraising for SEMA Cares, the association’s charity initiative. This year, the historic Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles played host to the July 24 events, with the evening’s gala emceed by the legendary “Voice of the NHRA,” Dave McClelland.

Required Reading

  • Yakima HeraldThe future of the Bonneville Salt Flats has captured the attention of the racing community. Publications from all across the country, including Scientific American and The Salt Lake Tribune, have noted that major land-speed events are being cancelled due to weather concerns and the deteriorating condition of the salt.

SEMA Heritage

  • SEMA HeritageConcept cars and styling exercises—especially those from the ’50s and ’60s—were often just that: exercises to showcase a designer’s wild ideas about the future of automotive design. Sometimes they previewed a production model to come, but more often they were the result of a fertile imagination coupled with whatever styling trend was current at the time.