Commercial Truck Dealers Gear Up for ATD Convention in Orlando

Published March 17, 2010

ORLANDO, Fla. (March 17, 2010) - The No. 1 issue facing the commercial truck industry heading into the American Truck Dealers (ATD) convention next month is credit availability for dealers and their customers, says Kyle Treadway, ATD chairman.

“Dealers are facing critical floorplan financing and operational credit line issues,” says Treadway, who has been dealer principal of Kenworth Sales Company in Salt Lake City, Utah, since 2000. “Our customers are struggling to qualify for equipment purchases under today's standards.”

Several hundred of the nation's commercial truck dealers will attend the ATD Convention & Expo, which runs April 23-26, at the Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center in Orlando.

“The ATD convention is a time for dealers to come together, meet with their manufacturers, talk to the suppliers, business management providers and financial partners,” says Pamela Hall, ATD convention chairwoman.  

Hall, who has been the dealer at Hall Volvo, GMC, Isuzu and Hino in Tyler, Texas, for the past six years, says another issue facing dealers is the decline in used truck values affecting new trucks sales.

“In too many cases the amounts owed on the trucks exceed their value,” Hall says. “The negative cash trends affect all businesses. It is a problem both in the medium and heavy duty sectors.”

Convention keynote speakers are Treadway; Dennis Slagle, president and CEO, North American Trucks (Volvo and Mack); and Jim Meil, economist for the Eaton Corp.

“Our industry is changing rapidly,” says Treadway, who operates 19 dealership locations in Utah, Idaho, Nevada, Wyoming, Montana, Washington and Oregon. “From advances in technology to market segmentation, what was true yesterday is likely evolving to something completely different today.”

“The best way for dealers to keep abreast of rapid changes to the industry is to listen to the experts, network with our peers and study our supplier's offerings,” Treadway added. “Our annual convention is formatted specifically to meet the needs of today's dealer.”  

Dealers will also have an opportunity to meet face-to-face with their manufacturer representatives at 12 franchise meetings and with suppliers on the expo floor. More than a dozen workshop sessions will be offered for dealers and their managers to learn ways to improve their business operations.

The winner and runner up of the ATD/Heavy Duty Trucking Truck Dealer of the Year will be announced April 24. The winners of the ATD Commercial Truck of the Year for new medium- and heavy-duty trucks sold in the United States will be selected April 25.

“We are excited for our dealers to come together at the ATD convention as we look to the future of our association and our dealers,” Hall says.

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