The leading trade group for vehicle and fleet consignors appears to be riding renewed interest and more participation as it has broadened its appeal and reach in the three comeback years since the pandemic.
With the 2023 Summer Roundtable just three weeks out, the International Automotive Remarketers Alliance is on track to grow its membership by a fifth since last year and expects a heavily attended conference Aug. 22-25 in Chicago that could scrape 300 attendees, President Jeff Bescher said. “I couldn't be more excited about IARA's future."
2023 sponsorships also have broken an IARA record since the group was founded in 2001 and started its annual roundtable conferences a year later.
While the IARA promotes itself as the “voice of consignors,” its ranks now draw a wider array of industry professionals, including auctions, dealers, financers, logistics transporters, reconditioners, and other remarketing roles.
"Every day I'm blown away by the commitment and dedication of IARA's board, committee leaders and members to making our industry better,” said new IARA executive director Mark Coleman, who is attending his first Roundtable in that capacity. “These folks have demanding jobs and have loved ones at home, and yet they still make time to build a stronger, more effective industry alliance."
Top Line Goals for Coming Years
Bescher and Coleman outlined three primary goal areas for the alliance looking ahead:
- Become an even better communicator with its members and with the industry.
- Work on ways to add even more value for members.
- Lay the foundation for an even bigger IARA member tent.
The executive board is exploring prudent, strategic investments it can make in 2024 and beyond to deliver on each of those three goals, Bescher said.
Last year, the IARA hired an outside analysis and survey firm to perform a complete internal assessment of its strengths and weaknesses that is informing its strategic vision and pursuits.
GROWing Professional Development for Remarketers
One example of how the IARA is expanding its membership will be visible at the Summer Roundtable, as it will formally add the Global Remarketing Opportunities for Women (GROW) to the alliance.
GROW was formed in response to a need for mentorship and opportunity for women in the automotive remarketing sector. The group was co-founded by Shelly Frank (DAA Corp.), Kelly Bianchi (AuctionVcommerce), and Sheila Tedesco (Lobel Financial).
This new business resource group within the IARA will focus on networking, workshops, leadership development, and collaboration with organizations who believe in GROW’s vision. First row support already has drawn sponsorships from American Recovery Service and Oklahoma Auto Exchange.
“GROW is an effort to provide the next generation of women remarketers with the benefit of experiences and relationships acquired by those who paved the way, which we believe will make the industry, as a whole, significantly better,” said co-founder Kelly Bianchi, who is president of AuctionVcommerce.
ACT was officially launched at the 2022 Summer Roundtable in Nashville, Tennessee, Aug. 16-18. Since then, its training modules have been taken and cleared by 70 remarketing professionals on the employee track and 62 on the management track.
The CAR certification program, which marks its 15th anniversary this year since the first two students passed the curriculum, has accrued 380 certificants, 20 of which have taken the courses three times to qualify for lifetime certification.
Originally posted on Vehicle Remarketing