From: Automotive Service Assocation Arizona
Collision Forum Discusses Parts Bidding Program
Phoenix, AZ - (June 14,2012) On June 6th, 2012, the Automotive Service Association of Arizona (ASA AZ) hosted a town hall meeting at the Hilton Airport Hotel in Phoenix to discuss the controversial Parts Trader program. Approximately 125 State Farm Select Service shops are currently piloting the program in 4 test markets around the country. In attendance were 109 representatives of collision repair shops, dealership parts departments,recyclers and suppliers of the industry from all over Arizona. The Arizona Attorney General's office and the Department of Insurance were invited to attend but both declined.
Among the speakers was also Attorney, David Wattel, a founding member of the law firm Wattel & York. David briefly spoke on his support of consumer rights.
David Priest, Parts Director for Brown & Brown Chevrolet in Mesa Arizona, talked about his company's experiences with Parts Trader. Brown and Brown is the largest General Motors parts distributor in the southwest and sells a large quantity of parts in the Tucson market, one of the areas State Farm chose to pilot the program.
Mr. Priest commented that "We were not able to find any benefit that Parts Trader provided to either our parts department or the shops that we do business with every day." Brown and Brown dropped the program several weeks ago due to the inefficiencies it created in both their business and in that of its collision repair customers.
After Mr. Priest finished taking questions from those attending the meeting, everybody was invited to offer their opinion as to the effect Parts Trader is likely to have on both the collision and parts industries. Overwhelmingly, those that spoke stated that, in their opinion, insurers should not be involved in any way with the parts purchasing process and to allow this would be bad for both collision repair shops and parts vendors alike. A common sentiment shared was that the relationships and trust between vendors and repairers would not exist under this program.
Furthermore, nobody seemed to be able to find any benefits for the consumers or repairer other than State Farm and, of course, Parts Trader. Some felt that if Parts Trader is implemented, it is only a matter of time that other aspects of the repair such as paint material purchasing would also be affected.
Luz Rubio, Executive Director for ASA AZ, invited everyone to submit questions and comments that will be compiled and sent to Denise Caspersen, Manager of ASA National Collision Division.
"It was great to see so many attend", stated Ms. Rubio. "There were a lot of questions and comments throughout the evening. And the feedback I have received about the meeting itself, from those in attendance, has all been positive."
ASA Arizona will be issuing a statement in the near future stating the position that it will take on behalf of its membership.
The Automotive Service Association of Arizona is a not-for-profit trade association of its kind dedicated to and governed by independent automotive service and repair professionals. ASA of Arizona serves a membership base that includes groups from both the mechanical and collision repair segments of the automotive service industry. ASA of Arizona's mission advances professionalism and excellence in the automotive repair industry through education, representation and member services. For additional information about ASA visit www.asaaz.org.
Read the recent release from ASA National: ASA Calls on State Farm to Prove Benefit of Pilot Program from Repairer Perspective
Contact: Luz Rubio