John Cochrane, owner of Toronto-area jobber Cochrane Automotive, was named as the recipient of the 2003 Jobber News Jobber of the Year Award at the Automotive Industries Association of Canada’s Annual Convention today.
Cochrane, who has dedicated much of his own time to pursuits that are designed to help the industry, says that he has always taken a wider view of his role beyond just running a successful business. "One of the things that I have always tried to do is enhance the value of the industry," said Cochrane. "Profitability, training, image–we tend to work on many parts of the industry.
"The industry is in massive change and I am trying to be one of the people that are providing some solutions to the problems."
Cochrane, who has been involved in many capacities with the Automotive Industries Association of Canada, is currently the co-chair of the Wholesalers/WD Council. He has made numerous presentations to industry executives over the years, on both the state of the industry as well as the financial imperatives of the installer base.
"He has been committed to bringing his business an his customers into a new era," said Jobber News Magazine publisher and editor Andrew Ross. Cochrane, was unable to attend the event for a very good reason, he added. "He has 30 service providers coming in today for training and 30 more tomorrow. That’s probably the best reason I can think of to miss this presentation."
Cochrane Automotive became a full-time jobbing operation in 1976 and today is a Uni-Select Auto Parts Plus operation as well as an ACDelco wholesale distributor.
Cochrane says his background as an automotive technician provided him with important insight into the issues affecting service providers.
"I think that I’m able to see the issues from the installer side hands-on," said Cochrane. "I constantly work at trying to improve that side of the jobber business. You look at Bob Greenwood’s program and trying to work with installers to enhance their business. The success of the installer is key to the success of the jobber."
Cochrane will be the subject of a full-length profile in the July issue of Jobber News Magazine.
The Jobber of the Year Award, is formally named the E.J. and A.E. Wadham Memorial Award. Named in memory of the founders of Jobber News more than 70 years ago, the award is a lifetime achievement award that recognizes those auto parts wholesalers who epitomize the values held by the aftermarket in terms of success in business, community involvement, and contribution to the Canadian automotive aftermarket.
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