Mac Tools distributors go ‘Full Throttle’ into 2023

Feb. 28, 2023
Mac Tools distributors gathered in Dallas Feb. 16-18 for a weekend full of tools, training, and camaraderie.

This year’s Mac Tools Fair had record-breaking attendance with over 900 distributors at the event, and that wasn’t including Mac’s international distributors, who were back in attendance after missing the last few years due to COVID. The event also hosted 84 vendors with 12 of them being first-timers.

Having the UK and Japanese distributors back at the tool fair only added to the excitement for this year’s event.

“[We got] really, really extremely positive feedback,” says Rob Ronan, vice president of channel marketing at Stanley Black & Decker. “Of course, every year they say, ‘It’s the best tool fair that I’ve ever seen.’ You get that in the heat of the moment from the distributors, but usually, they say ‘…but I would have done this better.’ We didn’t hear that very much.”

At the event, distributors were able to attend a variety of training sessions, check out the multitude of new Mac Tools products, and catch up with some old friends while also making some new ones.

‘Full Throttle’ training

Though Mac has multiple other training opportunities throughout the year, the tool fair provides the perfect setting to educate the distributors on things like business best practices, new tools, and more specifically, diagnostic tools.

With the theme for this year’s event being ‘Full Throttle,’ the Mac team really kicked it into gear with their diagnostic training.

Ronan says their diagnostic training is one of the bigger training sessions that they do. It covers everything from the basics to the more advanced side of things, and even with the more technical aspects of the diagnostic training, Ronan was pleased to note that they almost doubled the amount people who attended those sessions.

Not all training happens in a classroom though. Ronan emphasizes the importance of the event as a way for the distributors to use each other as resources.

“One distributor asking another distributor at the tool fair, ‘How do you do this?’ ‘You had this situation, what did you do?’ ‘Hey, what about a multi-route?’ That back-to-back, belly-to-belly conversation is really what makes tool fair exciting for everyone,” Ronan says.

New on the show floor

Mac debuted numerous new tools for their distributors to load up their tool trucks with. From the ANTIVIBE Hi-Vis Hammers to the 6-pc 4V Screwdriver Set, the distributors had plenty of new products to browse and bring back to their customers.

In the diagnostic category, Mac launched a new line of code readers. Similar to their ET9200 Series Scan Tools, the code readers span across three levels, giving users the opportunity to pick a code reader based on their technical ability, the functionality of the tool, and how much they want to spend.

Ronan also mentions Mac’s excitement about getting back into the automotive specialty category with tools like Light Bulb Pliers, a Ford Harmonic Balancer Holder, and a Quick Disconnect Tool.

“We’re investing in it as a company, and our distributors love that because they need it. They sell it.” Ronan states.

Additionally, Mac introduced the RBRT (rounded bolt removal technology) SAE & Metric Combination Wrenches — what Ronan believes to have been the star of the show. The sets are designed to provide up to two times more torque when removing 60 percent and 80 percent rounded fasteners compared to existing Mac Tools.

Next year’s Tool Fair will take place in Orlando. Dates to come.

To view more photos of the event, check out the Mac Tools Fair 2023 photo gallery.

About the Author

Emily Markham | Editor | PTEN and Professional Distributor

Emily Markham is the editor of  Professional Tool & Equipment News (PTEN) and Professional Distributor magazines. These publications are part of the Endeavor Business Media Vehicle Repair Group.

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