Automotive News

Fast Facts

Breaking news from SEMA member companies, including Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp. (TTC), Betts Spring Co., Design Engineering, Bilstein of America and more.

Wheels Up

The third annual Hot Rod Magazine Championship Drags, held in June 1966, was a scorcher. On the track, that is. All the big names in drag racing came to Riverside loaded for bear: McEwen, Chrisman, Landy, Leal, Ongias, Swingle—and records tumbled.

Windows 8

Microsoft’s Big Bet

Sporting a radical redesign that’s expected to charm some and disappoint others, Microsoft’s new Windows 8 operating system (OS) faces a tough slog, including a slow adoption rate, analysts said recently.

“The challenges of a new user interface, a complex set of processor choices and a long ramp to a compelling set of app offerings in the Microsoft Store will translate to a slower-than-usual Windows upgrade cycle,” said Frank E. Gillett, an analyst with research and advisory firm Forrester.

Finding the Right Advertising Agency

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For Manufacturers, It’s the Ultimate Match

Building a brand, informing business partners and educating consumers are key factors in marketing a product successfully. And while manufacturers may be experts at innovation and development, few also possess the expertise to publicize and promote their products for optimal sales in media ranging from print to web and from brochure to billboard. That is the business of advertising agencies. Finding the right one should be every manufacturer’s ultimate promotional goal.

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The Product Data (R)evolution

I often like to refer to the development cycle of the Internet in terms of “dog years.” That is, for every year that traditional business processes mature, it feels like the Internet has advanced seven. For the uninitiated, it’s a crazy, unpredictable ride that seems to push forward at a rate fast enough to make us feel like we’ll never catch up, no matter how attentive we are.

Derrick Johnstone, YEN Member Insights, January 2013

Derrick Johnstone, SEMA YEN Member of the Month Spotlight, Member Insight, Automotive News, Aftermarket News, January 2013

Derrick Johnstone

Alliance Sales 

It is customary for the YEN Member Spotlight to showcase the life and career of a young, up and coming YEN member but let’s face it, we work in and industry that thrives on breaking norms and thinking outside the box. With that in mind, this YEN Member Spotlight focusses on Derrick Johnstone of Alliance Sales, who’s odometer has rolled over the 40 year limit for YEN. All joking aside, Derrick continues to stay involved through Manufacturer’s Representative Network (MRN) where he is a current Select Committee Member. I had an opportunity to talk with him at the 2012 SEMA Show and find out what this former YEN member is all about.

Whenever I ask somebody how they got involved in the industry there is usually a pretty interesting backstory and Derrick’s is no different. He was pretty much born into it as his father, Dave Johnstone, was an instrumental in the Vancouver drag racing scene and is an inductee of the Greater Vancouver Motorsports Pioneer Society (2012) as a racer, car builder and car show producer.

PRO Pays Tribute to the Accessory and Appearance Industry

Professional Restylers Organization (PRO) - SEMA CouncilThe evening’s festivities for 2012—hosted by PRO and supporting sponsors—included hors d’oeuvres and liquid libations plus a ceremony honoring the 2012 PRO awards recipients in four categories: Restyler of the Year, Manufacturer of the Year, Nat Danas Person of the Year and Jim Borré Lifetime Achievement. The awards are detailed in the accompanying photos and captions.

Fast Facts

Breaking news from SEMA member companies, including MagnaFlow,  Rampage Products, Design Engineering Inc., Bilstein of America, Advanced Flow Engineering and more.

Changes: The Network for Professional Agents and Representatives

Manufacturers Rep Council (MRC) - SEMA CouncilThe SEMA organization that serves manufacturers’ reps in the automotive aftermarket industry has changed from the Manufacturers’ Representatives Council to the Manufacturers’ Representatives Network (MRN). The new name reflects the group’s desire to better serve the needs of the membership by becoming an individual-based professional network, compared to its previous agency-based membership format.

“MRN is very excited about these changes and feels this will best serve, promote and elevate our industry,” said MRN Chairman Thomas Jourdan of True High Performance Sales.

Media Trade Conference Moves to Orange County

Motorsports Parts Manufacturers Council (MPMC) - SEMA Council“The LAX Embassy Suites in El Segundo, where we have held so many of these events, notified SEMA staff very early on that their facility would be under major renovations during the same time as our conference,” said MPMC Chairman Vic Wood of Hedman Performance. “We are grateful to them for being proactive with the information and allowing us time to search out alternatives. After careful research, staff suggested we move the event to the Santa Ana Embassy Suites. The facility offers different challenges but also different opportunities. We are very excited to try this new venue.”


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