Tag Archive | "brexit"

IAAF CONFERENCE SPEAKERS ANNOUNCED

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IAAF CONFERENCE SPEAKERS ANNOUNCED


The proceedings for the IAAF’s Annual Conference are well underway with a variety of industry speakers set to take centre stage and discuss the ‘real’ issues affecting the aftermarket, post Brexit.

So far, confirmed speakers include Dr. Julia Saini (Frost and Sullivan), Allistair Preston (whocanfixmycar) as well as Steve Nash (IMI), Olaf Heffing (Mahle) and more. The event will be facilitated by racing car legend Johnny Herbert who will help debate other topics on the federation’s agenda including the Connected Car and the government’s recent announcement for the abolishment of petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040.

IAAF Chief Exec Wendy Williamson said, “The expertise, experience and insight provided by our speakers will, I believe, feature in the future strategic planning of all those that attend”, she added. “We’re looking to the future, but we also recognise the pressures faced by our members today and will aim to provide some clarity and insight into these challenges”.

This year’s conference will take place at the Players Suite, Double Tree by Hilton on Thursday 7th December. For those invited, don’t forget your black tie!

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TYRE DEALERS URGED TO CAPITALISE ON ‘BUDGET’ TYRE PRICE INCREASE

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TYRE DEALERS URGED TO CAPITALISE ON ‘BUDGET’ TYRE PRICE INCREASE


 

Micheldever Tyre Services (MTS) is urging tyre retailers to take advantage of unstable pricing at the budget end of the market and upsell mid-range tyres to offer consumers better value and maximise their margins.

The combination of rising raw material costs, Chinese pollution regulations and Brexit- fuelled exchange rate fluctuations have created a perfect storm for the budget sector. In recent months, budget tyre prices have been rising disproportionately compared with the mid-range and premium sectors, significantly reducing the cost price differential between typical budget and superior mid-range tyres in the same size.

Alan Baldwin, MTS Sales Director, comments: “With the difference between a budget and mid-range tyre now less than a fiver, it’s time for tyre retailers with a ‘that’s all my customers can afford’ attitude on price to change tack. With prices now so close, there really is a fantastic opportunity to offer a significantly better alternative for a negligible additional outlay. By doing so, garages are not only providing their customers with better quality tyres, but also improving their own profitability.”

Post-recession, the appeal of a Chinese budget tyre from a consumer point of view was clear; cheap raw materials, few regulations in Chinese factories and a favourable exchange rate meant budget tyres were often up to half the price of a mid- range alternative. With few consumers fully understanding the importance of their tyres,
the cheapest option is often the default choice, especially when that’s what the garage is recommending.

Baldwin continues: “Drivers are interested in their safety, longevity and quality but have become fixated by the cheapest option and too many retailers have become conditioned to appeasing this demand. With the price barrier all but removed, selling the benefit of a better quality tyres should now be a much easier conversation for retailers to have and customer retention is always going to be higher from giving the driver better value and a recognised brand.”

Confusingly, the increasing cost of a budget tyre has led some budget brands to position themselves as mid-range. Alan Baldwin suggests the simplest way to distinguish mid-range from budget is: “If it hasn’t got OE; it’s budget. Any tyre manufacturer that doesn’t produce OE tyres for major car marques is not mid-range.”

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TRADE BODIES UNITE TO FORM CONSENSUS GROUP

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TRADE BODIES UNITE TO FORM CONSENSUS GROUP


An aftermarket organisation has launched, bringing together a number of trade bodies and groups. The Automotive Aftermarket Liaison Group (AALG) has a stated aim of lobbying on issues that ‘affect the aftermarket in a post-Brexit Britain’.

Launched at an event held at Silverstone, the Group comprises of an alphabet soup of existing groups. These are: IAAF, IGA, GEA NTDA, the IMI and the SMTA. Representatives from all of the bodies explained the need to have a strong and united voice for the aftermarket on issues such as block exemption and guaranteed access to data, both of which are under threat in the so-called ‘Great Repeal Bill’set to take place when the UK leaves the EU.

Sandy Burgess, Chief Exec. of SMTA (Scottish Motor Traders Assoc.) commented: “As we progress towards the ‘Brexit date’, the landscape for our industry will change no doubt creating any number of situations which will generate the need for significant and potentially costly change. Acting as a strong united body the AALG will be able to use the pooled resource of the members to ensure a clear interpretation of the impacts of these changes and provide clarity of understanding to assist those within the industry to take sensible action to mitigate these impacts”.

The AALG has a rotating presidency. Currently, the IGA is at the head, so Stuart James is the point of contact for anyone in the aftermerket

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‘DONT SCREW IT UP!’ SMMT PRESIDENT SENDS BREXIT MESSAGE TO GOVERNMENT

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‘DONT SCREW IT UP!’ SMMT PRESIDENT SENDS BREXIT MESSAGE TO GOVERNMENT


gareth-jones_headshot_smmt-presidentGareth Jones, outgoing President of SMMT sent a clear message to government in a speech. “This Government has, commendably, put Industrial Strategy at the heart of business and the Department of Business.  It does so as it faces its toughest challenge – leaving the EU,”  he told delegates at the organisation’s centenary dinner.

“So, as it considers how to shape our future outside Europe and how to continue to grow the economy, our message is this: The United Kingdom is recognised the world over for its automotive strength. Don’t screw it up! “

Jones also discussed apprenticeships, mentioning that Sir William Lyons, Henry Royce and Henry Ford as well as SMMT founder Frederick Simms had all started their careers as one, and this was also the way that he, Jones, had started in the industry. “We need to capture the imaginations, the hearts, the minds of our young people before they leave school. To show them and their teachers that the business on their doorstep could just be the opportunity of a lifetime” he said.

“So I am clear on this: becoming an apprentice is not a second-class option. It never has been. Apprentices are innovators. And quality apprenticeships are crucial to our industry’s future”.

Jones concluded by welcoming Toyota UK MD, Tony Walker to the two-year Presidency post.

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