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Aftermarket Digest

December 29, 2010
Filed under Features

Modern Tire Co. to expand operations, add to staff

Modern Tire Co., one of the largest powersports tire and wheel distributors in the United States, is expanding its operations.

The company is moving into a new site in a foreign trade zone near the Evansville, Ind., airport.

“We are very excited to move into a more efficient and much larger facility, allowing us to expand our operations, add jobs to the community and most of all, provide better service for our dealers,” said Adam Raben, Modern Tire’s director of sales and operations.

The company expects its transition to the new site to be complete by Jan. 1 and then plans on hiring additional warehouse employees and inside sales reps.

Modern Tire Co., a division of Raben Tire Co., has dealer distribution channels throughout North and South America. It specializes in ATV tires, motorcycle tires and mounted ATV tire and wheel assemblies.

New products, services eligible for annual contest

For the 12th consecutive year, Powersports Business is selecting 50 items new to the marketplace that are products or services it believes to be particularly worthy of highlighting.

The annual Nifty 50 contest, featured prominently in Powersports Business’ January and February editions, has one major change this year. Products and services will not have to be displayed at Indy’s Dealer Expo to be part of the contest, which was a requirement in past years. The only requirements products or services must meet to be Nifty 50 eligible are twofold: 1) they must be new or substantially improved from previous years; and 2) be ready for delivery in calendar year 2011.

“We want to ensure we’re still highlighting market-changing products and services to dealers and the entire industry,” said Powersports Business Editor Neil Pascale, “but at the same time be mindful that the challenging economic environment doesn’t allow all of the industry’s aftermarket and dealer service providers to attend Indy. This is our way of leveling the playing field.”

Nifty 50 winners will be posted online at PowersportsBusiness.com and in the Jan. 17 and Feb. 7 issues. The February issue, which will be available at Dealer Expo, will include all Nifty 50 winners and include their company’s Dealer Expo booth numbers if the companies are attending the Indy show.

Companies wishing to participate can download a Nifty 50 entry form at PowersportsBusiness.com

Aftermarket group acquires media property

Motorsport Aftermarket Group (MAG), a family of aftermarket brands, has acquired Cycle News, MAG announced.

Cycle News printed a weekly motorcycle newspaper for more than 40 years until publication stopped on Aug. 31. Since then, its news has appeared solely on its website cyclenews.com. The website will continue to be operated, now under MAG’s guidance.

“We are committed to the Cycle News brand and to its readership, and we will work diligently to take it to the next level,” MAG President and CEO Brian Etter said in a press release.

With the acquisition of the publication, MAG also hired Paul Carruthers to return as editor of Cycle News. Carruthers worked for

25 years with Cycle News but left in August before print publication stopped.

“I am confident we can put together a quality team to bring Cycle News back to where it belongs – at the forefront of motorcycle media,” Carruthers said. “Having a company like MAG behind us will ensure its success.”

In other company news, MAG promoted Thomas Breed and Robert Brinkman to key positions in its international operations.

Breed, previously the president of MAG Europe, Ltd., has been named the managing director of international sales for the family of aftermarket brands. In the newly created position, Breed will oversee all of MAG’s international sales and marketing efforts. Brinkman, most recently the general manager of MAG Europe, is now the managing director of MAG Europe, and he will focus on MAG’s European sales and marketing initiatives.

“These moves represent our commitment to building a team that will grow our brands on a global basis,” MAG CEO Etter said in a press release. “As we expand our portfolio of brands, their leadership in these new roles will no doubt allow us to better serve our customers while positioning us for growth in Europe and the rest of the international marketplace.”

Industry veteran joins aftermarket company

Industry veteran Dan Proffer has joined the Powerlet team, a press release stated.

Proffer has taken over the newly created role of vice president of sales and marketing and will oversee all of Powerlet’s marketing, training, branding and sales-related efforts. Powerlet designs, produces and sells weather-resistant electrical power outlets, plugs, wiring and more.

Proffer previously served as a sales manager for BRP, Marshall Distributing and Scorpion Sports.

“Dan has extensive sales and marketing experience in powersports industry,” Adam Bonislawski, Coliant Corp. COO, said in a press release. Coliant is the parent company of Powerlet. “His passion for customer service, knowledge and experience in the market, combined with the fact, like all of us, Dan is an avid rider, makes him a perfect fit to help us develop and grow our business.”

AXO America data integrated into ADP Lightspeed’s DMS

AXO America Inc.’s gear is now searchable through ADP Lightspeed’s dealer management system (DMS), according to AXO America.

AXO America integrated its warehouse data into the DMS to allow dealers to search for available merchandise without leaving ADP Lightspeed’s invoicing screen.

“Today we added one more digital cornerstone to our customer service through integrating part of our ERP system with ADP,” Nicola Serragiotto, vice president of operations at AXO America Inc., said in a release. “Our short-term goal is to continue developing a flawless electronic order system to avoid any cost of transaction and mistake.”

The database will be updated daily, and AXO data will be added to all relevant searches.

Bel-Ray adds rep for its Northeast territory

Bel-Ray Co., a leading USA-based lubrication manufacturing company, has added Patrick Huban to its powersports sales team.

Huban will serve as the powersports sales rep for the Northeast Territory, calling on dealers in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Connecticut. Huban was previously the parts manager and service advisor with Ducati Triumph New York in Manhattan and is an accomplished motorcycle road racer that competes in the CCS Mid-Atlantic and New Jersey Championship Series. Bel Ray Co. was founded in 1946 and is a privately held business serving the lubrication needs of powersports, industrial and mining customers worldwide.

Custom Chrome to distribute James Gaskets

National V-twin distributor Custom Chrome has begun distributing James Gaskets, according to Custom Chrome.

James Gaskets, based in Dayton, Nev., has been producing gaskets and seals for V-twin motorcycles since 1979.

“James Gaskets has a long history of being one of the best in the industry at providing repair, replacement and maintenance parts for V-twin engines,” Custom Chrome President and CEO Holger Mohr said in a press release.

The new distribution agreement takes place immediately.

Renthal Re-Signs Muscle Milk Toyota JGRMX

Renthal has re-signed the Muscle Milk Toyota JGRMX race team to a multi-year contract that includes handlebars, chainwheels and grips.

Renthal has supplied the team with product since their inception just more than three years ago. In those three short years, the team has been able to establish itself as one of the premier teams in the 450 class.

“Ever since moving to North Carolina and trying to build a competitive race team from the ground up, I knew we would be relying on Renthal’s products,” Jeremy Albrecht said in a press release. “Every championship that I have ever won as a mechanic was accomplished using Renthal, so I knew I could trust them to perform.”

“We are excited to be able to extend our relationship with the Muscle Milk Toyota JGRMX team,” said Brad Cameron, brand manager for Renthal. “The group of people Coy and Jeremy have assembled around their race team are some of the most professional and hardest working individuals in the industry.” PSB

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