Performance & Hotrod Business - February '15

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February 2015 n Performance & Hotrod Business n 37 sulting role by the end of 2014 and hope to continue to contribute to our company's success, while expanding my volunteer activities. PHB: What's your advice for speed shops seeking long-term success in the performance aftermarket? DD: Shops will need to understand new and emerging technologies, and how specific aftermarket products can provide enhanced performance, handling, appear- ance, fuel economy and safety. They will need to focus on training to develop the technical skills required to work with those products. year, competitive pricing analyses, and product management tasks. PHB: What's the best thing about your job? DD: Working with all the truly great people in the aftermarket, which includes our suppliers, rep agencies and even our competitors. To me, it's a partnership toward our common goal: getting the right parts, to the right place, at the right time, and at the right price. PHB: What's the biggest challenge? DD: There are several challenges we manage that top the list—parts prolifera- tion, margin pressures, plus product avail- ability in some categories, just to name a few. For the aftermarket, finding quali- fied and skilled technicians is becoming a major hurdle. We all need to do what we can to fill the void. PHB: How do you see the current state of the performance aftermarket? DD: 2014 was a good year for us. In general, I detect more optimism from most of our manufacturers for 2015. Obviously, some categories are doing better than oth- ers, which is somewhat driven by changes in technology and offerings from the OEMs. PHB: Where do you think the industry will be in 10 years? DD: Keeping up with advancing tech- nology will be the name of the game. Aftermarket suppliers will need to quickly understand those technologies and how they can design and deliver quality prod- ucts that enhance vehicle performance and value. PHB: What professional accomplish- ment are you most proud of? DD: In my current position, expanding our marketing, advertising and product management efforts that have helped us continue our growth and success. PHB: What's your next big goal to achieve? DD: I'm moving into a part-time con-

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