The dealer group’s fall meeting was another golden opportunity to interact with and learn from some of our industry’s most successful entrepreneurs.
Of all the dealer groups, BPCA selects some of the most elegant and expensive locations for their meetings. This year it was the Ritz Carlton Reynolds Plantation in Lake Oconee, GA. Calling this a beautiful setting, does not adequately describe it.
The meeting was an active gathering of CEO’s and their spouses. This year’s President, Mitch Huffman of Knight Office in San Antonio along with BPCA Executive Director Dominic Pontrelli invited us to make a presentation about what HP’s acquisition of Samsung means to the dealer, and to also address the ERP world of SAP Forza and ECi.
The HP and Samsung story was right in my wheelhouse, but ERP’s are a whole different world for me and one I am less knowledgeable about. However, with the help of Mike and Jenna Stramaglio of MWAi, I was brought up to speed pretty quickly on this topic. It was also helpful that The Cannata Report has been following what MWAi has been doing with SAP Forza at the annual Executive Connection Summit meetings hosted by MWAI for the last four years. That, along with insights from dealers who have implemented Forza prepared us for our presentation. As it turned out, there were also a couple of dealers at BPCA who have installed Forza as their ERP in their dealership, and their insights during our presentation were valuable as well.
As is the case with dealer group meetings we are unable to discuss the specifics of the meeting itself, but for us it was further validation of the value independent dealer groups such as BPCA, CDA and SDG bring to their members. One can really hammer out an interesting discussion when there are dealers open to sharing and helping their fellow members get a better understanding of how they view whatever topics or issues are on the agenda, or in informal discussions throughout the event. Of the three groups that I mentioned, BPCA is the smallest (approximately 30 dealerships), but has the highest average revenue per dealer.
Our presentations allow us to speak freely at these meetings and it is very refreshing. We carry nobody’s flag and can give our assessments, evaluations, and flat out opinions without getting a great deal of flak. We share all that we can and we listen as much as we can. We get a good handle on what these dealers are thinking and where they believe they are heading. When you are in a room full of dealers it is always a learning experience. Particularly if they trust you and we believe we have earned that.
The rest of the agenda covered presentations from ECI, Clover, ACDI, Continuum, and Ricoh. In addition, there was a closed-door dealer roundtable. All-in-all it was a pretty good agenda addressing some of the concerns that dealers have today.
BPCA was celebrating its 50th Anniversary and breaking bread with these people was a real pleasure and one we always look forward to. We can easily say the same about CDA and SDG. These are entrepreneurs and there is no hype or pretentiousness, just camaraderie.
We want to thank Mitch Huffman for the invitation as well as Dominic. Bob Stuart of JD Young in Tulsa, OK is BPCA’s new president and we look forward to visiting with him and the rest of this dealer group in 2018.
If you have some interest in joining this group, please do not hesitate to reach out to Dominic Pontrelli at firstname.lastname@example.org. As noted earlier this is a small group of dealers, and a group that does not do much in the way of recruiting new members. However, like any other intelligent organization they are always looking for a few good men and women to join their organization.
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