NATDA Magazine Nov/Dec Nov2018Mag_FINAL - Page 8

As 2018 comes to an end, we thank you for participating in one of our best years to date. From a record-breaking NATDA Trade Show & Convention to new programs, this year has proven that both our association and the industry has made tremendous strides. Despite several changes in governmental policy, our industry has managed to not only perform better but also come together with a spirit that truly defines our niche community. Over 515 dealerships made the trip to Indianapolis for the first time in the NATDA Trade Show & Convention’s history. The exhibition hall they came to see was filled with 240+ exhibitors, consisting of 160 vendors and 83 manufacturers – 45+ of which were brand new to the association. Dealer receptions at Lucas Oil Stadium and Indianapolis Motor Speedway were just two of the highlights of the incredible return trip to the Circle City, but it was the dealer education seminars and speakers, including Google’s Partner Enablement Manager, Amy Swartz, and Flaman Group of Companies’ Executive Vice President, Steve Whittington, that really stole the show. While the show’s success was rewarding, we were also very proud to introduce several programs throughout the year. The NATDA Dealer Satisfaction Report gave manufacturers a better understanding of the types of things dealers are looking for. We’re confident it will result in better practices that benefit dealers across the country. To help with every day office needs, we coordinated with Office Depot to provide a more comprehensive program that saves dealers both time and money. Lastly, this year marked the first complete year of our NATDA Dealer Success Groups. If you attended the NATDA Dealer Success Panel at the show, you’ll know that these dealerships have nothing but praise for the way this program has helped their daily operational activities. Our association isn’t alone in praising 2018, though. Several manufacturers and vendors have done so well that they’ve needed to expand their operations, including H&H Trailers, CURT Manufacturing and more. We’ve also seen high-profile mergers, like Universal Trailer Corporation and American Hauler or TexTrail Trailer Parts and Nuera Transport, that will undoubtedly provide dealers with new benefits. The industry is not only improving its business state, but its community relationships as well. Interstate Manufacturing opened the year with a snow-mobile trip, Charter Software made several philanthropic contributions, Gen-Y partnered with Mission on Wheels, Midsota Manufacturing teamed up with two childhood cancer organizations and Equali-i-zer Hitch is developing the next generation by teaching teens about American manufacturing. We look forward to an exciting 2019, a year that is sure to filled with the same community spirit that brought dealers, manufacturers and vendors closer in 2018. 8 NATDA Magazine