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Dealer training sessions a big part of AIMExpo

Dave McMahon, Editor in Chief
September 11, 2013
Filed under Columns

In case you haven’t done so yet, be sure to read through the rest of this edition of PSB to spot the announcement of the dealer training sessions at the Powersports Business Institute @ AIMExpo.

We’ve spent months putting together a lineup of 40 seminars that will be regrettable for those who opt to stay home during the AIMExpo run from Oct. 16-20 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando.

And while the trade show and all dealer education sessions are free to dealers who register early, the rate jumps to $35 per person later this month. So save yourself a headache and sign up right after you check out the PSB Institute lineup of speakers. You’ll recognize the names and faces of many who are regular PSB contributors, including Sam Dantzler, Hal Ethington, Peter Jones, Steve Jones and Neil Pascale. Most importantly, the lineup from top to bottom is made of up folks who like nothing better than to see your dealerships thrive. Heck, many of them have been into your dealerships in recent weeks, assisting you with some sort of business proposition.

Managing editor Liz Keener and I caught up with AIMExpo execs Mike Webster and Larry Little on the phone recently, and were thrilled to know that the buzz about AIMExpo is getting louder as the show ticks closer. I promised them that when dealers take a gander through our lineup of training seminars and topics, AIMExpo might need a new server to handle the registration requests. So please, make me look proud and take advantage of the free registration! I’ll owe you a shoutout in Orlando.

Power 50 upcoming

Speaking of Orlando, we’ve made our way through the applications and will be announcing the inaugural Power 50 class of North American dealerships during a dinner in October at AIMExpo in Orlando. AIMExpo is shaping up to be quite a celebration of the industry’s stature in the U.S.

We’re looking forward to honoring the Power 50, and gathering them together so that they can share their success stories in 2013.

Industry exec’s arrival brings another customer

Sameer Gaur of GE Capital contributes his insight into the floorplan financing market for the first half of 2013 in the Focus section in this edition. Gaur is a new face to many dealerships and OEMs, but has more than a decade under his belt, most recently in the railcar leasing division.

Let’s just say he’s taking a liking to his new gig. Gaur, president of the Motorsports Group at GE Capital Commercial Distribution Finance since August 2012, is already comfortable on two wheels. He took his Motorcycle Safety Foundation training course, got his motorcycle license, and now is the proud owner of his first motorcycle — all prior to his one-year anniversary in the business.

“It makes a difference to walk in to see your customers and be a rider,” he said. “But I can’t say I’ve become a rider — I’m still becoming a rider — but on that journey you feel so much more connected when you have those conversations. I think it was an important step. I’m locked and loaded. If I look at guys on the team here, none of them stopped at one bike!”

He holds a master’s degree in economics from The Delhi School of Economics and an MBA from McGill University in Montreal. He also has a post-MBA Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

More important, he’s another enthusiast who will be frequenting a dealership looking for exceptional customer service.

Ski-Doo truck to bring expert advice to riders

One of the great things about working in this industry is the continual innovation. You can read about a variety of different people and businesses in this edition who have used innovative product to grow their businesses, and in turn, your dealership.

Ski-Doo dealers just received a hot August boost of excitement for the season when the OEM revealed that it has launched an industry-first Parts, Accessories and Clothing semitrailer exhibit that will be focused on “educating the consumer and showing a broad selection of new Ski-Doo accessories and technical riding gear available for sale through Ski-Doo dealers.”

Consumers and dealers alike can spot the “BRP Riding Gear & Accessories Knowledge Centre” tour truck at select events this fall. And while the name doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, dealers hope to see their Ski-Doo snowmobile PG&A rolling in the dough.

The exhibit — remember, only gear, no sleds — will include BRP experts who can answer consumer questions about the proper accessories and riding gear, as well as the technology used in the design.

A specific TNT Jacket and Bib promotion is spotlighted, and only available for purchase at authorized BRP dealerships. Also, a small classroom setting will show customers the technology behind products, including layering for warmth and oils and lubrication.

Check out the truck on location at:
• Big East Snowmobile Show, Syracuse, N.Y., Oct. 4-6
• Alberta Snowmobile & Powersports Shows, Edmonton, Alb., Oct. 18-20
• Toronto Snowmobile & ATV Show Toronto, Oct. 25-27
• Snowmobile USA Novi, Novi, Mich., Nov. 1-3

Dealer dedication

KTM VP of sales Brad Hagi told an interesting tale of Malcolm Smith’s arrival for the KTM North America dealer meeting in Austria in July.

Smith was driving his son, Alexander, a key player at Malcolm Smith Motorsports in Riverside, Calif., to the airport, so the youngster could make his departure for Austria. When it sunk it with the elder Smith that he wasn’t going himself, he dropped off his son, returned home, packed, went back to the airport, bought a ticket at the counter and made his way to Austria for the dealer meeting.

That qualifies as dedication in my book. Expensive, but dedicated.

Dave McMahon is Editor in Chief of Powersports Business. Reach him at dmcmahon@powersportsbusiness.com or 763/383-4411.

 

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