Auto Service World
Feature   April 1, 2000   by Bob Blans

ACROSS CANADA REPORT: Benchmarking Made Easy

The AIA Ottawa office and divisions across Canada are urging jobbers to complete the Profit Planning Survey prepared by the Market Research Committee. It was mailed in March and the deadline for completion is the end of April.

Jobbers who participate receive a customized report on their operations. The information, which includes comparisons of businesses of similar size and scope, will help them determine how to increase their profitability.

Jobbers who are completing the survey for the first time may need assistance from their accountant or bookkeeper, but it is worth the effort. This is a no-brainer. You benefit. The information you give the AIA remains confidential.

For more information contact Lise Newton at AIA, (613) 728-5821 ext. 224, or e-mail:

AIA president Ray Datt was disappointed that the budget excluded tax relief for automotive technicians as far as the tool tax is concerned. He said AIA and its various partners will continue its campaign for tax relief during the balance of this year and he will be announcing a formal strategy.


Uni-Select Pacific welcomes Alder Auto Parts with three stores, two in Surrey and one in Aldergrove, B.C., to the Uni-Select network. Manager Steve Fedderson says the move will help the company retain and grow market share.

Peter Gilchrist, the AIA B.C. Interior Division representative, notes that the Lordco store in Salmon Arm is now open for business. He also says that two UAP/NAPA stores in Penticton now operate under one roof. Dale Braithwaite of Pro Auto Supply has moved to A&K Holdings, joining Pat Kinch and Larry Avery at that location. B.C. Interior’s new chairman, Trevor Gilbert, UAP/NAPA, Armstrong, B.C. has started the ball rolling in the Interior with plans for a lake cruise, a golf tournament and divisional meetings.

Harold Nichols, the AIA Vancouver Island and British Columbia representative, informs us that Brian Williams, president of Kirk Auto Parts, Courtenay, B.C., an Auto Sense jobber, passed away January 27th. His funeral on Feb. 2nd was well attended by people in the Courtenay and Comox areas, including a number of Auto Sense members along with factory reps and other automotive related people. Brian will be missed.

Dale Hamill, chairman of the Manitoba Division, says the division has prepared a busy schedule for the year 2000. It began early this month with a division meeting in Winnipeg. Linda Brown of the CARS Council and George Ramik, the executive director of MAP (Motorist Assurance Program), made presentations. The Division will be publishing a quarterly newsletter and it is currently finalizing plans for social events and a golf tournament. Dale notes that management and staff at UAP/NAPA are excited about the move into the new distribution center in Winnipeg. The 82,000-sq.-ft. building will house the equipment division, the auto body supply division and the retail parts division all under one roof.

Jamie Campbell of Bumper to Bumper in Manitoba would like to welcome Dan Harrison and Richard Coslette of C&H Auto Parts in Thunder Bay to the Bumper to Bumper family.

Michel Bourgeois, UAP/NAPA, is the new Quebec Division chairman. He has 25 years of aftermarket experience and he has been very involved in the Automotive Sectoral Skills Council. During his term, he plans to increase AIA membership in Quebec. He says that only 35-40% of the businesses in Quebec that qualify are members and he hopes to get membership up to the 60% level. Mandatory emissions testing in Quebec is another priority.

Note: If you have any information to contribute to this column please call Bob Blans at (905) 844-8616, Fax (905) 844-8731, E-Mail to or write to Across Canada Report c/o Jobber News Magazine, 1450 Don Mills Rd., Don Mills, ON M3B 2X7. In addition to AIA Division activities we are interested in hearing from you about the opening of a new business, change of ownership, expansions etc.

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