March 2019 INDUSTRY BRIEFS
MUSIC CITY TO HOST THE 2019 CAR WASH SHOW
The Car Wash Show™ 2019 is heading to Nashville’s Music City Center, May 13 -15. With a theme of “Evolve Your Business Strategy,” the show will offer attendees an opportunity to participate in breakout sessions, workshops and presentations aimed at helping business owners and managers evaluate and improve their businesses in changing times.
Interactive sessions include Peer Power Hours, discussion groups and roundtables. Workshop topics run the gamut, from “Creating a Memorable Customer Experience” to Marketing Tactics” to “Embrace Evolution” and “Economic Outlook for Today’s Leaders.” Attendees who sign up for a Premium Pass will have exclusive access to five content paths—technology, talent management, business strategy, marketing and fast lube. For details and to register, visit www.carwash.org/car-wash-show/thecarwashshow.
FENDERBENDER CONFERENCE SLATED FOR HOMETOWN DEBUT
For the first time, FenderBender will host the organization’s annual management conference in its Minnesota hometown of Minneapolis-St. Paul. The 2019 FenderBender Management Conference is slated for September 30 to October 2 at the Hilton Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport Mall of America in Bloomington.
The event is open to all collision repair shop owners and managers, PDR business owners and techs, estimators and others who are looking to grow and improve their businesses. The conference will include a blend of presentation formats as well as educational and networking experiences. As of press time, more than 40 presentations are on tap, including 24 strategy sessions, 12 FenderBender Talks broken into separate tracks, plus workshops and two keynote addresses. To learn more and register for the event, visit www.fenderbenderconference2019.com.
DENVER RESTYLING CENTER NAMED LLUMAR’S DEALER OF THE YEAR
Loveland, Colorado-based Autoplex Restyling Centers, which operates four, full-service restyling and truck-accessory facilities in the Denver area, was recently honored with the National Dealer of the Year award by Eastman Performance Films, maker of LLumar brand window tint and paint protection film. The award was presented during Eastman’s annual Elite Dealer Conference, an educational and networking event that drew top-tier dealers from across the U.S. and Canada.
Led by an experienced team headed by company owner Josh Elliott, Autoplex was selected for the award based on specific criteria, including dealer loyalty, growth and use of Eastman’s sales and marketing programs. Previously, Autoplex was the 2010 recipient of the Restyler of the Year award presented by SEMA’s Professional Restylers Organization (PRO).
Josh Elliott (second from right) accepting the National Dealer of the Year award from Eastman Performance Films on behalf of the Autoplex team.
EASTMAN’S INTERACTIVE RACE TRAILER HIGHLIGHTS LLUMAR FILMS
Eastman Performance Films’ new race trailer features interactive experiences designed to educate NASCAR fans about LLumar automotive film products. The trailer experience—which includes a race car simulator, the Llumar No. 88 Camaro and interactive displays of window tint and paint protection film—is part of Eastman’s sponsorship of Hendrick Motorsports driver Alex Bowman.
The trailer, which made its debut at Eastman’s recent Elite Dealer Conference, will make pit stops during the NASCAR season, including the Texas Motor Speedway and other tracks as well as the Hendrick Motorsports facility during races in Charlotte, N.C. The trailer will also make an appearance at Autoplex, Eastman’s 2019 National Dealer of the Year, plus other dealers’ facilities throughout the U.S.
“Countless potential customers will see this trailer while either on the road or interacting with it up close,” said Eastman Commercial Director Darrell Reed. “Ultimately, we want this exposure to translate into leads for our dealers.”
Eastman’s new traveling trailer—complete with the No 88. Camaro sporting bold graphics and LLumar products—highlights the company’s LLumar brand of window tint and paint protection film in support of its sponsorship of Hendrick Motorsports driver Alex Bowman.
BESTOP BUYS BULLRING
Bestop recently announced its acquisition of BullRing USA, a manufacturer of retractable tie-down anchors. The Texas-based company was founded in 1988 and is known for its one-of-a-kind anchors that require no drilling to install. BullRing tie downs fit Chevrolet, GMC, Ford, Ram and Toyota trucks.
In announcing the acquisition, John Larson, Bestop CEO, said, “Bullring is an incredible niche accessory business that will fit perfectly into Bestop’s premium accessories portfolio. The product and the company carry an impeccable reputation, and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to help build the brand.” www.bestop.com; www.bullringusa.com.
Bull Accessories LLC, doing business as BullRing USA, has been purchased by Bestop. BullRing is known for its uniquely designed tie-down anchors, which require no drilling to install.
WESTIN POISED TO PURCHASE SUPERWINCH
In other acquisition news, it has been reported that Westin® Automotive Products is in the process of purchasing the assets, intellectual property and brand name of Superwinch Group.
Westin, a leading manufacturer of aftermarket accessories designed to fit an active lifestyle, was established in 1977. The company is based in San Dimas, Calif. Superwinch has been manufacturing electric and hydraulic winches and accessories for 40 years. According to the company’s website, Superwinch ceased operations in Portland, Ore., at the end of February and is unable at this time to process orders, requesting that customers be patient during the transition period.
“We are very excited at the opportunity to blend the Superwinch brand and products into our overall Westin program,” said Westin’s President and CEO Bob West. “This opportunity is consistent with our reputation of bringing the broadest range of top-quality, innovative products for consumer and commercial applications to the automotive aftermarket across the U.S. and worldwide since 1977.” www.superwinch.com; www.superwinch.com.
Westin Automotive is in the process of acquiring Superwinch, the well-known manufacturer of hydraulic and electric winches.