DIFM study just one opportunity AASA takes out of uncertainties

Nov. 4, 2014
As AAPEX 2014 kicked off Tuesday morning, the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA) brought to attendees’ attention its efforts to continue to monitor uncertainties ahead and trends today’s suppliers are experiencing. 

LAS VEGAS — As AAPEX 2014 kicked off Tuesday morning, the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA) brought to attendees’ attention its efforts to continue to monitor uncertainties ahead and trends today’s suppliers are experiencing.

Bill Long, president and COO of AASA, says there is a momentum based on suppliers’ sales, which are the highest since the first quarter of 2012. Long at the AASA annual meeting at AAPEX addressed three areas of uncertainty for suppliers going forwarded, quickly noting that there are opportunities to go along with them.

“It’s not a stretch to say we’re in the midst of an automotive renaissance,” Long says.

First, there are dynamics impacting the do-it-for-me (DIFM) market, such as an aging marketing and changing vehicle technology. AASA in the first quarter of 2015 will release its Do It For Me Outlook 2025. Long says AASA has seen some signs of what those trends might look like, including the impact of quality parts lasting longer and longer service intervals, as well as e-tailing and pricing.

Beyond that study, AASA also is looking into the practice of extended payment terms. There are risks to the industry when it comes to increased interest rates, and the impact that rises in them will have on suppliers, Long explains. There also is an impact on inventory in the field, where extended terms have made it possible for more inventory to be kept at the store level.

Finally, Long notes that a third uncertainty continues to be the speed and the impact of disruptive technology, everything from 3D printing to telematics. This one might tie most into opportunities for suppliers, though, including a continued expansion in global markets.

About the Author

Tschanen Brandyberry

Tschanen Brandyberry is Special Projects Editor for the UBM Americas – Automotive Group, moving into the position following roles as managing editor of Motor Age and associate editor of Aftermarket Business World. She joined the Automotive Group in 2006 after working in editing and writing positions at The Morning Journal in Lorain, Ohio, and The Daily Chief-Union in Upper Sandusky, Ohio, in addition to public relations agency experience. Tschanen is a graduate of the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio.

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