Auto Service World
Feature   September 1, 2000   by Bob Blans

ACROSS CANADA REPORT: Preparing for Fall

Bye summer, hello fall. Other than the divisional golf tournaments in September, it’s back to serious business.

First of all, let me remind you that October is Car Safety Month, and Car Care Canada has written eight bulletins that have been distributed to community newspapers across the country. Here is an opportunity for jobbers and installers to tie in their local advertising with Car Safety Month promotions. The bulletins have also been posted on AIA’s website: The new bulletins cover brakes, oil changes, batteries, windshield wipers, finish protection and cold weather maintenance.

In my last column I provided details on the upcoming 2000 AIA Forum and Mini Trade Fair to be held November 22 at the International Plaza Hotel in Toronto. It promises to be a great event with some great speakers. If you haven’t registered or wish to find out more about this event, call Mireille Schippers at AIA headquarters at (613) 728-5821 ext. 226.


Peter Gilchrist in the B.C. Interior says S.OA.P. (South Okanagan Auto Parts), owned by Jonathan Fleming, has now opened a store in Osoyoos, B.C. The company is an NFL/Lordco associate and it has recently joined AIA.

Uni-Select has broken ground for a new warehouse in Kelowna. Gilchrist says they have outgrown their present location. The new warehouse is expected to open late this year or early next year.

Cy Russell reports that a new warehouse venture has been announced in Winnipeg. Winnipeg Ford Lincoln Dealers have formed a new company called Fast Parts + to serve commercial accounts, including the aftermarket sector. Randy Robbins has been appointed general manager of the company. He has more than 20 years of experience at the retail, wholesale and warehouse levels.

The AIA Engine Rebuilders Council has created a new application form for the Motive Power Machinist Industry Standards program. It will be mailed to the appropriate member companies. The first two graduates of the program are Rick Kowalski from Custom Engine and Parts Ltd. in Lethbridge, Alta., and James Fitzpatrick from Harold’s Automotive in Brampton, Ont.

Fanshawe College in London, Ont. has announced that it is introducing a new parts person apprenticeship program. Fanshawe’s Rod Cameron says it is designed to meet the ever-more complex and demanding needs of parts departments in dealerships and in the many aftermarket parts businesses that support the motive power industry in Ontario. AIA and Fanshawe are currently in discussions about including some AIA correspondence courses in the apprenticeship program curriculum.

AIA has a new web-hosting firm (3Way Street), and a new web design firm (Intoinfo Inc.) to improve its website and to be on top of future site development. The companies will work with AIA’s Advisory Website Task Force.

AIA has announced that it is now a partner in the Global Aftermarket Symposium Scholarship Program. Eligibility was extended to Canada this year, and applications for Canadians will be available this fall. Applications will be accepted from anyone who has graduated from high school in the last three years, and is enrolled in a college level or technical program. Preference will be given to those seeking a career in the automotive aftermarket. Recipients will receive $1,000 Canadian initially and another $1,000 once they have graduated and can prove that they have worked in the aftermarket for at least six months. For further information contact Mireille Schippers at AIA (613) 728-5821 ext. 226.

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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