Tania Barlow, MD Sewells South Africa
There is real and encouraging evidence of a global recovery in new vehicle sales in 2012 and beyond, says Tania Barlow, managing director of Sewells Group South Africa, who has just attended a world automotive business convention held in Las Vegas in the United States.
‘The 2012 NADA US Convention attracted more than 20 000 new-car dealers, automaker executives and exhibitors – including 1500 dealers from 36 countries. Held in the first week of February it followed record rising car sales in the US since last October, the highest numbers since before the recession.
‘The Expo trade show which runs in parallel was a sell-out with close to 600 companies showcasing products and services. Most of the presenters to the 100 plus workshops and keynote sessions which we attended were bullish about the motor business being well on its way back to the top.’
Tania said Sewells South Africa had once again assembled a working group of local and overseas automotive retailers to the convention as well as six different evaluation visits to local motor dealerships in Las Vegas.
The study group was co-hosted by Tania with Mike Paxton and Odette Taljaard of Sewells Group South Africa together with Manish Jar, Sewells Group head of international business who is based in Mumbai. Mike Paxton, a Sewells Group South Africa specialist business consultant carried out the planning and coordination of the group’s attendance at the convention and the popular study visits to motor car dealerships in the Las Vegas area.
The 30 member party included 17 dealer principals from across South Africa, two from India and one each from Kenya, Angola and Zambia.