In its third year, this annual business conference is the industry’s largest gathering of the independent heavy duty aftermarket.
Although primarily North American in focus, HDAW drew attendees from 17 different countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, India, Mexico and Russia.
“HDAW ’08 was an action-packed conference that lived up to its theme: ‘Face-to-Face, Building Relationships in to the Future’ thousands of face-to-face contacts were made,” said Jerry Weis, president of Ott’s Friction Supply Inc., and HDAW ’08 chairman. “From the All-Industry Opening Reception, described as the largest-ever truck parts industry party in anyone’s memory, we were off to a flying start.”
“The opening session and the Heavy Duty Aftermarket Forum session were attended by more than 1,100 registrants; the HDAW Business and Technical Theater sessions and workshops were heavily attended in some cases standing room only,” said Joe Mejaly, vice president and general manager or ArvinMeritor’s Commercial Vehicle Aftermarket Business, and HDAW ’08 vice chairman. “We had a record 1400+ pre-scheduled one-on-one meetings, and 227 exhibitors in the 100,000 square foot HDAW Product Expo.”
“HDAW’s intent is to provide a comprehensive business conference that sets the stage to meet the coming year’s challenges. These distributor, supplier, and other industry volunteers and staffers from the 12 sponsoring organizations began regular meetings, shortly after HDAW ’07 to develop the program for HDAW ’08,” Mejaly continued.
Planned and shaped by a group of more than 100 industry volunteers and association staffers, the elected leadership of Weis, Mejaly, education co-chairs Gene Damron of Vipar HD Parts and Don Reimondo of Affinia guided the group to its successful execution of the program.
Most of the education session material is available to download from the conference Web site, www.hdaw.org. A separate DVD has also been produced and is available for purchase. The DVD covers the HDAW opening general session, including the MacKay and Co. Heavy Duty Aftermarket Forum and the Heavy Duty Aftermarket Industry Awards program. (Tire Review/Akron)