Tucker Powersports to Stage 2021 Dealer Show at AIMExpo
Columbus, Ohio - January 21 – 23
Fort Worth, Texas based Tucker Powersports has announced that it has "set a new direction" for its 2021 dealer show by staging it at the MIC's AIMExpo at Columbus, Ohio.
The agreement integrates the Tucker Show, "an expo and training event for powersports dealers", into AIMExpo, which is the sole remaining independent powersports industry trade expo in the United States now that it has decided on a dealer only format.
By reverting to a spring selling season date - widely touted by AIMExpo as being late when the original show concept first staged at Orlando, Florida, in 2013 - the MIC has moved to fill the industry void left by the failure of Advanstar's long-running Indy Dealer Expo. The Tucker Show has hosted dealer attendees annually since 2008, having itself originally been conceived as a trade and public 'combo' event in July each summer.
"Our dealers love the great connection they have with our suppliers and our brands, and now we'll deliver that experience better than ever," said Marc McAllister, President and CEO of Tucker Powersports.
"Partnering with the Motorcycle Industry Council and AIMExpo allows us to do far more for dealers and suppliers than we could do on our own. Dealers who purchase products from Tucker are significant beneficiaries of the new partnership. Tucker dealers will enjoy a vast array of product training programs, a separate check-in experience, discounted hotel rooms, VIP activities and an exclusive lounge on the show floor."
Tucker says that an expanded list of Tucker suppliers will be invited to the show to exhibit products and host product and brand-specific dealer training during the event.
"The partnership with Tucker Powersports exemplifies one of the core values of AIMExpo – uniting our industry," said Motorcycle Industry Council President and CEO Erik Pritchard. "The tremendous presence of Tucker dealers and Tucker suppliers in the exhibit hall and training rooms, along with the Tucker leadership team and representatives, will help set the tone for the industry in 2021.
"Now more than ever it's important that we share resources and come together to leverage the strengths of our collective businesses. This is a perfect example of the show's theme, Together We Rise." Dealer registration for AIMExpo will begin in June 2020 at both the Tucker Powersports and the AIMExpo websites.
The elephant in the room remains how other industry distributors will react to the move, especially Parts Unlimited and Drag Specialties, given that their annual cycle would, in theory, see them staging their VIP Dealer Expo at Louisville, Kentucky, in February.
"As AIMExpo evolves and hones its focus on dealers and the greater powersports industry, it's imperative that we recognize iconic brands and develop key relationships that will help the industry as a whole," said Cinnamon Kernes, Vice President and General Manager, MIC Events. "Collaborating with Tucker in such a meaningful way further allows dealers and aftermarket brands an opportunity to connect in one place, at one time. The benefit of attending AIMExpo has been increased exponentially."
However, announcing the partnership with Tucker during an online MIC symposium at the end of May, Kernes was asked directly about other distributors, and she stated that she hoped (if not exactly expected) that they would still participate. She also stated that the MIC hoped that motorcycle manufacturers would also now still see AIMExpo as a potential business platform.
Asked specifically about the V-twin sector, Kernes appeared to be living in hope rather than expectation - uncertain as to whether or not the profile of the show was one that the "outspoken" custom parts and accessory market would find convincing.
While recognizing that the traditional battle lines between business rivals inevitably become ever more deeply entrenched in a market under pressure, we here at AMD Magazine certainly do hope that the market's other distributors are able to see the bigger picture of this at all times.
It is also to be hoped, now that AIMExpo is an exclusively B2B expo, that MIC Events can learn to 'speak V-twin' in a way that strengthens the channels. Like a good trade journal, a trade show's job is to act as a business enabler and not try to be a lifestyle shop window.