What a difference a year makes. While the first High Performance and Custom Trade Show drew about 100 exhibitors to the drafty halls of Dodger Stadium in 1967, the second edition a year later moved to the modern, well-lit Anaheim Convention Center, where 140 exhibitors used 201 10x10-ft. booths to display their products and make their 1968 sales pitches to 3,800 distributors and dealers from all over this country, Mexico and Canada.
Since the inception of the SEMA Data Co-op (SDC) in 2012, more than 400 product brands representing more than 4 million parts have joined what is now the industry’s largest specialty parts product data repository. The SDC is designed to enable any company, no matter how small or large, to effectively manage and distribute its product data at the lowest possible cost, and the SDC’s expert staff will coach you all the way through the process.
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With the job market the best it’s been for job seekers in 15 years, digital-recruiting toolmakers are serving up even better solutions to ensure that companies can capture the best of the talent. The new tools come at an opportune time, given that the economy appears poised for continued healthy growth.
Each year, SEMA’s research department produces a report that explores the automotive specialty-equipment market. The report examines the size of the market while also looking at different product segments, vehicle niches and sales trends. For more than 20 years, the report has been compiled based on data culled from industry manufacturers, providing an outward view of what their businesses are selling. For the first time, the research team has now added an element based on consumer feedback. The goal of the 2015 SEMA Market Report (available free to association members at www.sema.org/automotive-aftermarket-research) is to provide member companies with comprehensive information they can use to help their businesses.
As 2015 rapidly comes to a close, most of us are busy preparing for the SEMA Show and getting next year’s budgets in order. If you are not yet working with the SEMA Data Co-op (SDC) to take total management control and ownership of your product data, now is a perfect time to plan for engagement in 2016, just in time for the spring selling season. And remember, the SDC doesn’t charge any initial onboarding or setup fees. In fact, you don’t pay anything until your data is ready to distribute, so you can start the process today and not affect your calendar 2015 budget.
There are names synonymous with automotive performance: Iskenderian, Edelbrock, Hilborn, Weiand. Those who know Louis Senter and understand his achievements in performance and the automotive aftermarket rank him right up there with those other pioneers. Yet his isn’t the same kind of household name in this industry. That’s because when Louis and his brother Sol took on Jack Andrews as a partner in their new Los Angeles speed shop in the mid ’40s, they named it Ansen Engineering, a combination of the principles’ last names.
The SEMA Memorial Scholarship Fund has awarded $150,000 to 58 individuals this year. This includes 45 SEMA scholarships presented to current students, and 13 loan-forgiveness awards presented to employees of SEMA-member companies. On behalf of the industry, we offer congratulations and continued success to the following award winners.
Located in Covina, California, Bert’s Mega Mall has a celebrated reputation as the nation’s largest powersports super store. Originally a bicycle retailer, it was bought in 1958 by Ed Seidner, who kept the Bert’s name because he couldn’t afford to change the signage and business cards at the time. Soon Seidner was adding motorcycles to his inventory, becoming one of California’s first Yamaha franchises.
Although it’s likely that the industry is feeling the SEMA crunch and busy preparing for the Show, it’s important to stay up-to-date and in-the-know about what to expect at the upcoming event. Be sure to carve time out of your day to read what’s happening. Identifying your “must-read” publications will help you be more efficient with your time. As with all SEMA publications, this magazine will be packed-full with Show-related news.