Sewells Businessman of the Year


SEWELLS BUSINESSMAN OF THE YEAR “Good service = good business” – Tania Barlow

Queenstown Volkswagen

Good motor dealers are those who provide measurably excellent services to motorists – and when they do this properly their own businesses prosper, says Tania Barlow, MD of Sewells Group South Africa.

She made these observations at the prestigious WesBank sponsored Businessman of the Year awards banquet in Gauteng last night (Wednesday 15th May).  The Sewells ‘BotY’ programme, endorsed by the National Automobile Dealers’ Association (NADA), has been running for 15 years (since 1998).

The occasion included the announcement of three winning motor dealers out of 15 finalists all of whom, said Tania, were excellent examples of how sustaining globally recognised best practice business strategies was good for customers.

The winners selected from five finalists in each of three categories – for large, medium and small dealerships are:

Large category: Koos van Rensburg Oranje Toyota Bloemfontein
Medium category: Gerhard van Zyl NTT Volkswagen East London
Small category: Johan Kemp Queenstown Volkswagen

An additional award – for the ‘Most Improved Sewells Performance Group Member’ – was won by Stephan Venter of Nelspruit Auto Ford.

Tania said the ‘BotY’ awards had become symbolic of the ultimate in excellence in automotive retailing.

‘All the finalists are excellent businessmen who have proved highly capable of producing good returns on investment in tough market circumstances.  Last year (2012) when the measurement took place can hardly be described as an easy one in which to excel, and yet they have all done so very successfully.’

Volkswagen East London Oranje Toyota Bloemfontein

Background: Sewells Businessman of the Year – A measurement of excellence

The Businessman of the Year is a measurement of excellence in performance using the key industry benchmarks produced by Sewells Group South Africa.

Most franchised dealers in South   Africa participate in the benchmarking process.  Dealership financials and a large range of key statistics are uploaded using the Sewells Online System (eSOS) which then allows dealers to immediately view their own individual results.  Sewells can then view collective industry benchmarks which are determined by sequencing the values generated for the key performance indicators (KPI) and then picking the result at the 70th percentile for revenue items and 30th for expense items.

Introduced in 2011 for the first time, Sewells now utilises a stratified selection procedure to nominate the Sewells Businessman of the Year contenders from each of three different categories (large, medium and small).  This is to give equal and fair opportunity to dealers of all sizes.

The categorisation is determined by taking the total turnover for all qualifying dealers (those who have subscribed and reported consistently for 12 months) and dividing the result by three.  These dealers are then ranked by turnover. The progressive addition of dealers’ turnover in the ranked sequence, commencing with the largest, until the total equalled the first one third strata, represents the large dealers. The progressive summing of dealers after this point, until the second one third strata, represents medium dealers and the remaining dealers make up the small category.

Dealers are ranked by ROI percentage from largest to smallest. The top 10 dealers are then selected with no repeat of brand in the selection. Each of these 30 dealers receives a special certificate giving recognition to their ‘Best Practice Performance’ for the year. The top five of each group then became the finalists attending the banquet – where the leading performer in each becomes the Sewells Businessman of the Year for 2012 in that category.

The actual turnover levels of the three categories for the 2012 evaluation was:

Large dealers – over R320m; medium dealers – R202m to R180m; and small dealers – R180m to R2.5m