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Aftermarket deal seals US-Australia pact

That's a deal: Australian aftermarket industry chief Stuart Charity and his American counterpart Kathleen Schmatz shake on their new agreement.

American aftermarket peak body to open doors for Australian industry

1 Oct 2014

THE Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association (AAAA) will gain access to valuable aftermarket analysis and expertise under a memorandum of understanding signed with the Auto Care Association (ACA) of the United States.

The agreement was inked by AAAA chief executive Stuart Charity and ACA president and chief executive Kathleen Schmatz during this week’s Automechanika exhibition in Frankfurt where the AAAA had a pavilion.

The two organisations have been co-operating on an informal basis for many years.

The agreement will provide quick results for AAAA members who want to exhibit at November’s Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo in Las Vegas, as it will provide for streamlined registration for them.

The same courtesy will be reciprocated to ACA members wanting to exhibit at the Australian Auto Aftermarket Expo, which is set for Melbourne next April.

But Mr Charity said the benefits would be more extensive than that.

“Our members will benefit through improved access to market research, education and technology initiatives by the highly professional team at the (ACA),” he said.

The ACA is almost 10 times larger than the AAAA, with 2000 members representing more than 150,000 stores and outlets drawn from the key sectors of the automotive industry: manufacturing, distribution and sales.

The ACA is seen as the voice of the US aftermarket industry, which employs more than four million people and turns over $US298 billion ($A343 billion).

The AAAA has more than 1700 members employing around 30,000 people. AAAA members turn over $34 billion a year and export products worth $A800 million a year.

Mr Charity said information sharing with the ACA had already been of benefit to the AAAA.

“Our close relationship has been valuable for the AAAA industry advocacy activities covering vehicle data sharing, warranties, telematics and the connected car,” Mr Charity said.

He said the memorandum would provide a broad framework for co-operation between the AAAA and the ACA.

Apart from expediting access to each other’s expos, Mr Charity said the two organisations agreed to promote international trade and investment between their members and to build awareness of each other’s markets through education efforts.

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