How well was 2011 for the aftermarket? Here’s a surprise … or is it?

Nov 7, 2011

And I thought the 2010 SEMA Show was upbeat. It had nothing on this 2011 Show.

This isn’t cheerleading. From the 30- or 40-or-so exhibitors (I began to lose count) I had in-depth conversations with between Oct. 31 and Nov. 4 at the aftermarket trade show in Las Vegas, I found not one who didn’t say he or she was upbeat — genuinely so — about the industry, the show, the quality of their aftermarket buyers/installers/jobbers.

Despite the too many gloom-and-doom sayers that have pervaded the industry for 2011, not one of those dozens of folks I chatted with said 2011 was a bad year for their business. (Yes, not every one of them — or even most  of them — said 2011 was a great year, but it was a strong enough for them to see more good black than bad red ink.) And quite a number of these suppliers said they were hiring again. And many indicated they’re looking at 2012 as a growth year, a hiring year. So be it, I say.

What say you Mr. or Ms. Restyler? Are you ready for a 2012 that sees you hiring? A 2012 that sees your bottom line blacker?