NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, Texas – Sept. 30, 2020 – The 2020 MSO Symposium will take place Nov. 9-13 as a series of webinars, scheduled to start daily at 12 p.m. PDT, 2 p.m. CDT and 3 p.m. EDT.
In addition to the daily 90-120 minute webinars, the biggest change will be the cost to attend.
All five days will be free to the entire industry.
MSO Symposium organizers are encouraging all industry stakeholders to attend and experience this one of a kind opportunity to learn from some of the brightest minds in the industry.
The outline below provides a sneak peak into the topics and leaders that will be facilitating a week that should be enlightening and educational.
Additional announcements will be made in the coming weeks highlighting the companies and individuals participating in each segment.
Every day the program will start at 12 p.m. PDT, 2 p.m. CDT & 3 p.m. EDT.
Monday, Nov. 9
Session One – Industry Statistics and Trends
- Presented by Susanna Gotsch, CCC Information Services
Session Two – Industry Snapshot
- Presented by Vincent Romans, The Romans Group
Tuesday, November 10
Session One – OEM Panel Discussion
- Moderated by Sean Carey, SCG Consulting
Session Two – Financial Insight Q&A Session with an Economist and Banker
- Moderated by Marcy Tieger, Symphony Advisors LLC
Wednesday, November 11
Session One – Mega Dealer Panel Discussion
- Moderated by Mike Anderson, Collision Advice
Session Two – Regional MSO Panel Discussion
- Moderated by Dan Risley, CCC Information Services
Thursday, November 12
Session One – Insurance Panel Discussion
- Moderated by Insurance Solutions Group, Stephen Applebaum
Session Two – Real Estate Panel Discussion
- Moderated by Veritas Advisors, John Walcher
Friday, November 13
Session One – 2 Private Equity Group presentations
Session Two – Alternative Business Models
- Presented by Mike Anderson, Collision Advice
Registration to the event will be available later this week at www.msosymposium.com/register. More details on the daily content will be shared in the weeks leading up to the event.
Historically, this high profile event generates a lot of interest. If you are interested in being a sponsor, please reach out to Jennie Lenk at firstname.lastname@example.org or Brian Nessen email@example.com. Given the limited number of sponsorships available, we would encourage you to not delay and act now.
For additional insight, you may also visit the event website at www.msosymposium.com.
About Automotive Service Association
The Automotive Service Association (ASA) advances professionalism and excellence in the automotive repair industry through education, representation and member services. Our Washington, D.C., office – located just steps away from the U.S. Capitol, U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives office buildings – is ASA members’ link to the legislative and regulatory issues that are most relevant to automotive repair businesses.
ASA monitors issues at the state and federal level, identifying legislation and regulations most important to members. ASA’s D.C. office serves as an advocate on Capitol Hill and with federal agencies on behalf of independent repairers. ASA provides information and grassroots opportunities through its legislative website, TakingTheHill.com, and various association publications. ASA’s goal is to advance the plight of independent automotive repairers, protecting our members from legislation and regulations that may harm their businesses, and advancing those policies that make our members’ businesses stronger.
Cooper Tire shares answers to the questions they know customers will ask auto service professionals about tires as the weather gets colder
By Jenny Paige, Cooper Tire Product Manager
Winter brings the potential for unpredictable weather and harsh conditions. Thus, it’s critical that drivers know the basics of winter driving safety. Driving with care during cold weather starts with educating your customers about the only part of their vehicle connected to the road: their tires.
Depending on your location, over the next several months your customers are going to ask many questions about winter tires. Here are the top eight questions customers may ask when it comes to understanding and purchasing winter tires:
1) “Should I get winter tires?”
This depends on where you and your customers live and drive. You should recommend winter tires to your customers if they are regularly driving in an area where the temperature consistently drops below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Contrary to what many believe, there doesn’t have to be snow on the roads for a winter tire to be beneficial. The tread rubber on a winter tire is specifically formulated to stay supple and provide grip as the temperature drops. And, a winter tire will outperform an all-season tire once the temperature drops to about 40 degrees Fahrenheit, or when you can start to see your breath.
2) “What’s the difference between winter tires and all-season tires?”
Before investing in winter tires, customers will want to know why they should spend money on winter tires when they may already have all-season tires. The main point to emphasize is that all-season tires are NOT winter tires. All-season tires are designed for year-long driving and can handle some light winter conditions, but winter tires are specifically made to improve braking and handling on snow, ice and in cold temperatures.
Picking the right winter tire for you and your customers’ driving conditions is key. There are winter tires tuned to handle slush and black ice for highway commuters, or there are winter tires that can plow through snow. For those in the most extreme winter conditions, some winter tires can be fitted with metal studs, which provide extreme grip on icy surfaces.
Having the right set of tires for driving conditions (even if that means having a summer and a winter set of tires) optimizes both the performance of the tires and their longevity, which is healthy for your customers’ bank accounts in the long run.
3) “I have four-wheel drive / all-wheel drive, do I even need winter tires?”
This is a popular misconception, and you’ll need to clarify with your customers that four-wheel drive does not offer any braking advantages when it comes to stopping on ice and snow. Winter tires are made to provide better traction on snow and ice and through freezing temperatures. If you’re located in an area that regularly experiences temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit or heavy snow, dedicated winter tires are the right choice.
4) “How do I know which winter tires are right for me?”
Most people probably don’t realize that there are different types of winter tires and that the technology is constantly evolving to address the challenges of driving in different kinds of winter conditions – from slush to snow to ice. At Cooper, we spend a lot of time thinking through the various winter driving conditions and work to create tires to address those unique challenges.
For example, we are introducing a new tire designed especially for trucks and SUVs. The new Cooper® Discoverer® Snow Claw™ tire gives drivers confidence and grip on the road in the bitter cold, snow and ice. It has the rugged dependability and strength that can be expected from a Cooper light truck product but is specifically designed to handle extreme winter conditions. The tire’s been tested on a variety of vehicles and roads, and the test data proves its performance. The Discoverer® Snow Claw™ tire stops on average eight feet shorter on snow and 12 feet shorter on ice than select competitor tires.* The Discoverer Snow Claw can also be studded, if your customers desire.
Another winter tire, the Cooper® Discoverer® True North™, is ideal for daily commuters who drive on plowed and treated roads, and deal with slush and black ice throughout the winter months. It offers exceptional wet traction for slush-covered roads and superior grip on ice and snow. It features a tread compound that remains flexible when the temperature drops, offering supreme control, while maintaining a smooth, quiet and comfortable ride.
5) “How can I tell the difference between a regular tire versus a winter tire?”
When identifying a winter tire, the first place you need to look is on the tire sidewall. If the tire carries the three-peak mountain snowflake symbol then you know it has an acceptable level of winter performance, per the U.S. Department of Transportation’s requirements.
Recently, a number of tire makers have started developing “all-weather” tires. These are tires that carry the three-peak mountain snowflake symbol, but are still marketed as 12-month tires. These products offer more snow traction than a traditional all-season tire, and they are a great alternative for customers who are not willing to own two sets of tires. However, for someone who drives in harsh and unpredictable winter conditions, such as during a winter travel advisory, Cooper would still highly encourage that motorist to consider a dedicated set of winter tires.
6) “Can I just buy two winter tires?”
Always recommend that your customers purchase four winter tires. By switching all the tires to winter tires, drivers are better equipped to maintain vehicle control in unpredictable winter conditions. Proper braking and vehicle handling depend on tire traction. If a vehicle only has two winter tires, this can lead to an imbalance in how the tires are gripping the road and negatively impact handling and braking.
We’re all watching our spending more closely these days, so if a customer insists on only purchasing/installing two winter tires, they must be on the rear axle.
7) “Do I need studs on my winter tires?”
This will depend on the road conditions travelled and local laws, but let customers know that in slushy or wet conditions studs aren’t necessary on winter tires and have no added benefit. Studded winter tires provide more traction in icy conditions as the studs are designed to dig into ice. Studded tires do have a few downsides as well such as damaging roads and creating an uncomfortable ride, thus they aren’t recommended unless drivers are consistently facing icy roadways.
Click here for the full list of state regulations on studded tires.
8) “I noticed my ‘check tire pressure symbol’ on my dashboard lights up when it gets cold outside – is this a sign I need to change to winter tires?”
Your customers may not be aware that the Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) warning light often turns on when the temperature drops. To put it simply, when the air inside a tire gets cold it condenses and the pressure inside the tire goes down, regardless of the season. Tire pressure decreases by about one pound per square inch for every 10-degree drop in outside air temperature, so the colder the weather, the more tire pressure decreases. The warning light activates when the tire pressure is 20-25 percent lower than the required pressure.
Driving on underinflated tires can be dangerous and may lead to blowouts. The TPMS light coming on is less a sign that drivers need to switch to their winter tires and more a reminder to properly maintain the tire pressure to stay safe on the road.
For more information on winter tires as well as other important tire information, visit the Cooper Tire website here.
**Based on the results for Discoverer® Snow Claw™ LT275/65R18 tires in comparative snow braking and ice braking testing against three select competitor tires and the previous generation product.
NORTH RICHLAND HILLS, TEXAS, Sept. 1, 2020 – The Board of Trustees at the Automotive Management Institute, the industry’s leading provider of management education for automotive service and collision repair professionals, is pleased to announce that Chuck Searles has been selected as the organization’s new president, effective immediately.
Searles will succeed Jeff Peevy, who left to return to I-CAR as VP of Technical Products, Programs and Services in late July.
Searles brings to the position a wealth of knowledge in the industry. He has been an active part of the automotive service and training community for almost 28 years. His career began as a Dealer Service Technician in 1992. During nine years as a Service Technician Chuck was employed by three different Dealers in two different states, Alaska and Arizona. This diversity helped expand his skill set and knowledge base, which eventually led to a Technical Service Support position with Nissan North America in 2001. Over the last nineteen years he has served in four different Nissan training roles; Technical Training Instructor, Sales Training Senior Planner, Technical Training Operations Manager, and Technical Training Instructional Design Manager.
“I’m honored and excited to serve the Board of Trustees and the ever-expanding client base as President of AMi,” Searles said about his new role.
Searles can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“We are ever so pleased to announce Chuck Searles as the new president of AMI. Chuck comes with an immense background in business management, personal leadership, analytics, organizational development, curriculum design, problem solving and classroom instruction,” AMi Board of Trustees Chair Darrell Amberson said. “His relationships and understanding of vehicle manufacturers will be an asset. We are confident that Chuck will oversee the continuing growth and prevalence of AMI, leading it to new higher levels of performance and achievement.”
About Automotive Management Institute
AMi was established in 1989 to answer the demand for continuing education and industry-accepted recognition programs tailored specifically for the business needs of the automotive service and collision repair industry. To date, AMi programs have attracted more than 350,000 enrollments throughout North America. AMi is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) educational foundation, to which tax-deductible contributions may be made. For more information about the Institute, its curriculum or methods of donations, please contact AMi at (817) 514-2929, or visit the AMI website at www.AMionline.org.
The Specialty Equipment Market Association has announced that due to Covid-19 and concerns that event facilities and services will be unavailable, the SEMA Show will not take place in 2020.
While both event organizers and industry members have been working tirelessly to deliver an outstanding SEMA Show in November, mounting uncertainty has rendered continuing with the event inadvisable. SEMA expects the decision will bring much-needed clarity to an uncertain picture and will help exhibitors, attendees and partners plan accordingly.
Recent SEMA Show survey results indicated interest in a possible virtual tradecshow with related live elements. SEMA will work with industry members to determine interest levels on specific alternatives.
“The SEMA Show is committed to furthering businesses in the automotive specialty-equipment market, and to providing manufacturers and buyers with the best opportunity to connect, promote new products and discover new trends,” said Chris Kersting, SEMA president and CEO. “We appreciate the spirit, hard work and innovation our industry puts into the SEMA Show each year. While we are disappointed circumstances prevent us from hosting the Show in November, we look forward to getting everyone together in 2021 for another outstanding event.”
Full refunds for SEMA Show exhibitor booth deposits and attendee registration fees will be issued.
Updates will be posted to www.SEMAShow.com.
LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Aug. 5, 2020 – AAPEX 2020, scheduled for Nov. 3-5, 2020 at the Sands Expo and Caesars Forum Conference Center in Las Vegas, will not be held as an in-person tradeshow event this year due to the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic and related governmental prohibitions and restrictions on gatherings, businesses, and travel.
Instead, AAPEX will provide a virtual/digital experience with many of the show’s same elements presented digitally.
Given the State of Nevada’s recently announced long-term mitigation strategy for the COVID-19 pandemic, which has indefinitely prohibited events with more than 50 participants, and the severe limitations on international and domestic travel imposed in connection with the pandemic, unfortunately, the traditional in-person event cannot proceed.
By Andrea Berryman / Director of Product Development/ Cooper Tire & Rubber Company
The tire sidewall provides a lot of important information. You can help your customers understand this information, making them smarter about their tires and tire purchases, and helping you continue to be their trusted ally.
Here’s a breakdown of how to explain some important sidewall information on passenger vehicle tires for customers who may not be familiar with tires or have always wondered what this information means.
BEYOND THE SIDEWALL: PROPER TIRE INFLATION PRESSURE
This is one case where the vehicle owner must look beyond the sidewall for the right information. What is printed on the tire sidewall for inflation pressure is the maximum cold inflation pressure allowed in the tire, not the proper inflation pressure for the tire when fitted to a specific vehicle. The proper inflation pressure is provided by the vehicle manufacturer and can be found on the vehicle tire placard usually located on the driver side door jamb, glovebox or inside the fuel door of most vehicles. This sticker provides the correct inflation pressure for the vehicle’s tires.
Inflation pressure enables tires to support the load of the vehicle. Therefore, proper inflation is critical. The right amount of inflation pressure helps the vehicle and the tires achieve their optimum performance, last longer and even helps reduce fuel costs.
Note: tires heat up from driving, so do not check tire pressure immediately after a trip, no matter how brief. Wait a few hours until the tires have cooled.
The letters “M” and “S” indicate the tire is intended for limited mud and snow service. This mark may be found in several formats that may include: “MS,” “M/S,” “M&S,” or “M+S.”
MOUNTAIN SNOWFLAKE SYMBOL
The snowflake symbol inside a mountain range indicates how a tire will perform in the snow. If your customers drive in snow frequently, checking the tire’s sidewall to see if this symbol is present is very important. The three-peak mountain snowflake, or 3PMS, indicates that the tires were designed specifically for severe snow and can handle those conditions.
The load index is a numerical code (104/101 in the example image below) associated with the maximum load a single tire can carry at the speed indicated by its speed symbol (see below) under specified service conditions. The load index is a code ranging generally ranging from 50-129 that represents the maximum load carrying capacity for a single tire. In the example below, single and dual application load indices are listed.
The maximum weight (load carrying capacity) is also stamped on the lower sidewall of the tire. A driver should never exceed the maximum limits on the tire or the rim/wheel. Driving on an overloaded tire is hazardous. When a car is carrying too much, the weight can create excessive heat in the tire, which can cause sudden tire failure.
The speed symbol is a letter that indicates the speed category at which the tire can carry a load corresponding to its load index under specified service conditions. Speed ratings are based on laboratory tests that relate to performance on the road, but are not applicable if tires are underinflated, overloaded, worn out, damaged, or altered. In the example, the speed symbol “T” in the service description means a speed category of 118 miles per hour (or 190 km/h).
Excessive speed is not only unlawful but may also cause injury. Although a tire may be speed rated, Cooper does not endorse the operation of any vehicle in an unsafe or unlawful manner.
The most common speed ratings on passenger car and pickup truck tires are:
Q ….99 mph / 160km/h R …106 mph / 170km/h
S …112 mph / 180km/h T… 118 mph / 190km/h
H …130 mph / 210km/h V …149 mph / 240km/h
W…168 mph / 270km/h Y …186 mph / 300km/h
Z …149+ mph / 240+km/h
Radial is the most popular type of tire and denotes a particular design in which the ply cords are arranged at 90 degrees to the direction of travel. Radial tires provide reliability, comfort, protection, stability, durability and maneuverability for drivers. A tire with radial construction will have the word “RADIAL” on the sidewall.
A radial tire is also delineated by the character “R” in the size designation.
DOT TIRE IDENTIFICATION NUMBER
The “DOT” symbol certifies the tire manufacturer’s compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) tire safety performance standards. Next to these letters is the tire identification number (TIN), also known as the tire “serial” number.
Think of a tire’s identification number as its “birthday.” The first two digits are the factory code indicating where the tire was made. The last four digits identify the week and year of manufacture (Example: “0309” means third week of the year 2009), so drivers can know exactly when their tires were manufactured. Other characters in between the first four and last four characters are optional manufacturer’s codes for tire type, make, etc. All tires produced after September 2009 must have the full TIN on the intended outboard side of the tire and at least a partial TIN on the intended inboard side. The partial TIN does not include the date code.
It is important to know the DOT tire identification number in the event a driver needs to verify safety certifications or in the event of a manufacturer’s recall.
ADDITIONAL OPTIONAL SUFFIX LETTERS
- LT – Light truck
- ST – Special trailer
- TR – Tires for service on trucks, buses or other heavy vehicles. This suffix is intended to differentiate between truck tires and light vehicle tires with similar size designations.
- ML – Mining and logging tires used in intermittent highway service
- MH – Tires for mobile homes
- HC – Identifies a 17.5 rim diameter code tire for use on low platform trailers
- NHS – Not for highway service
- P – Indicates a P Metric tire
For more information on tire sidewalls as well as other important tire information, visit the Cooper Tire website here, and also see the Care and Service of Passenger and Light Truck Tires document on the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association website.
Andrea Berryman / Director – Product Management
Andrea Berryman is the Director – Product Management for Cooper Tire & Rubber Company. In her role, Andrea leads the North America product development team to drive forward Cooper’s long term product strategy. Andrea’s efforts focus on Cooper brand products as well as Mastercraft, Starfire and private label brands.Andrea joined Cooper in April 2017 as Product Manager – SUV. In January 2020, she was promoted to the role of Director – Product Management. Prior to joining Cooper, Andrea worked for the Dana Corporation where she was a Program Manager for commercial vehicles. Earlier in her career, she spent 24 years at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company working in a variety of engineering and product marketing roles.
She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from the University of Kansas.
From Federated Insurance
It’s the small- to medium-sized businesses that are especially vulnerable: half are victims of cybercrime and nearly two-thirds of those victims go out of business.1
Hackers increasingly target small businesses because there is a low risk they will be caught and a high probability they will be successful.
Maintaining personally identifiable information (PII) on a computer connected to the Internet creates a nearly unavoidable risk. More than likely, names, addresses, and employment information are stored. If PII is acquired by someone without the authority to do so, that may result in a data breach.
Banking, credit, and vendor account information is also vulnerable. Even if that valuable information is not stored on an Internet-connected computer, employees who have access to it can be duped into handing it over to criminals.
Best Practices and Security Tips
Tip 1: Train Employees in Information Technology Security. Training should be offered, especially to those who are responsible for accounts payable, human resources records, and wire transfers. Training for all employees should be reinforced periodically.
Employees should be instructed to refrain from clicking links or attachments in e-mails, and not to pay an invoice until it’s confirmed that the sender actually sent it. Even if the e-mail appears to be from a trusted source, employees should learn to always copy and paste links or type URLs into a browser to see if the address is valid.
Tip 2: Funds Transfers. Put a policy in place to have an in-person or telephone conversation to confirm e-mail requests for funds or personal information. It can greatly reduce the likelihood of fraudulent transfers or information sharing.
Tip 3: E-mail Authentication. Phishing can be substantially reduced by verifying that the e-mail originated from the domain it is associated with. If your domain is hosted, it’s worth taking some time to look at how your e-mail is set up to ensure proper authentication schemes are used.2
Tip 4: Change default passwords on your router and other Internet-connected devices.
Tip 5: Use a trusted VPN service when using Wi-Fi.
Tip 6: Back up your data regularly both to the cloud and to a removable device.
Tip 7: Update firmware and software regularly.
Tip 8: Provide firewall security for your Internet connection. Ensure your operating system’s firewall is enabled, especially if have employees working from home.3
Tip 9: Limit employees’ authority to install software and their access to only necessary information and data.3
Tip 10: Require employees to update unique passwords every three months.3
Security professionals used to strive for perfect security, but today they accept that goal as unachievable. Instead, they strive for optimal security by combining best practices with a risk management program that considers purchasing data compromise and cyber coverage through a knowledgeable insurance provider.
Cyber Shield® from Federated Insurance is a two-part coverage program designed to help provide essential protection against many of the critical cyber and privacy exposures businesses face. Data compromise coverage and cyber coverage can help your company recover from intentional or accidental breaches.*
- “Small Business, Big threat: Protecting Small Businesses from Cyber Attacks,” Statement for the Record: Dr. Jane LeClair, Chief Operating Officer, National Cybersecurity Institute at Excelsior College Before the United States House of Representatives Committee on Small Business, 4/22/15. https://smallbusiness.house.gov/uploadedfiles/4-22-2015__dr.__leclair__testimony.pdf
- The leading e-mail authentication protocols are SPF (Sender Policy Framework), DKIM (Domain Keys Identified Mail) and DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance); best practice is to utilize the three protocols together. https://dmarc.org/2016/03/best-practices-for-email-senders/
- “Cybersecurity for Small Business.” Online at https://www.fcc.gov/general/cybersecurity-small-business
- Coverage will be determined solely by the circumstances of the event and the terms of your policy, if approved for issue. This article is not an offer of insurance.