Ducati North America (DNA) recently held its second dealer meeting of 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada, to convey a message of commitment to the North American market. An earlier meeting in spring was held as a way to assure Ducati’s dealer network that the company was still stable even in the midst of the Great Recession. This time it was more focused on what is planned for operations on this side of the Atlantic and DNA itself. After all, the company leadership has just changed hands; now in charge is Ducati Motor Holding Vice-President of Sales Cristiano Silei, who takes over as CEO of DNA.
The primary purpose of having this meeting, according to Silei, is to demonstrate that Ducati is listening to the North American market and will be responsive to it. He also wants to make sure that DNA members have access to the same resources as the Italian HQ. Another resource which will see augmentation is the DNA headquarters in Cupertino, California; the office will see a 10% increase in staff over the next few months. The apparel department will be expanded too as more dealers have signed on to the Ducati apparel and accessories programs, and stocking will now be handled through Ducati’s regional business managers as opposed to a single central source as has been previously organized.
Other changes include a new program to help Ducati dealers with their accessories stocking and keeping it up to date with current models. A new program will allow all dealers to exchange 5% of their accessory orders two times per annum. Ducati has signed up with ADP Lightspeed to handle a continent-wide parts location service allowing all North American dealers to locate parts anywhere in the network. Silei also informed the audience that three new lines will be added to the spring/summer apparel collection to be unveiled this November.
Further changes will see Ducati return to an annual ordering process, but dealers will be able to make quarterly adjustments. And, in response to the continuing economic crisis, Ducati will be giving dealers more margin on motorcycle sales and allow longer flooring terms. That flexibility should help some of those struggling with stagnating or declining sales. Fortunately, Ducati has launched some very exciting models recently and this has kept customers coming in and spending money.
CEO Silei is brining some much needed help to a segment of a market which has suffered a great deal lately – the motorcycle industry. Ducati is not the small company it seems to be, though, and they have a vast support network on which to rely. As of now, North American Ducati dealers will be able to make use of some of those exceptionally useful resources to improve their stability and assist them in these very trying economic times. The future looks very red…
Written by J.C. Current, Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com