For the second consecutive year, Bidvest Volkswagen Arcadia, scooped up what is considered the most prestigious award in the retail motor industry by winning the 2021 MSX/NADA Business of the Year (BOTY) Awards in the Category for Listed Group Dealerships.
The honour was also bestowed on this dealership in 2017, 2020 and now for 2021, which makes it three titles and six nominations since 2013.
Dealerfloor spoke to Stephan Delport, Dealer Principal, about the award and how they manage to achieve this by outmanoeuvring other large dealerships from different manufacturers mainly in our big cities and metro areas.
“Yes, we are glad and honoured by the award and it shows we are on the right track in how we manage and run our business. Winning it for a third time and being a finalist yet again indicate exceptional business practice. Our systems are in place, and we have incredible staff and leadership at Volkswagen Arcadia.
“All aspects of the business are scrutinised, and corrective measures are implemented should it be required. This includes return on your investment, profitability, management of expenses and customer satisfaction.
“McCarthy Volkswagen Arcadia has a philosophy that all customers must be treated with honesty and integrity to ensure future client relationships. The customer should know exactly what he or she pays for, as buying a car is the second largest investment after buying a property.
“Any extra products, be it tinted windows or scratch and dent cover, must be presented in such a way that the customer can see its worth it in rand and cents. Customers should always feel that they got value for their buck, especially in the trying times we find ourselves in.
“Our profit comes from selling cars, which means that stock must be turned on a regular basis to unlock the capital locked up in a vehicle. Stock management is therefore critical, and daily focus and communication to my management team are pivotal to ensuring our activity remains at optimum levels.
“It is true that less stock means higher margins for all dealers dictated by current market forces from a supply and demand point of view. With an oversupply the opposite is also true with pressure being put on our margins owing to the wider variety and greater supply of stock.
The lack of new stock because of supply chain issues, be it COVID related, the scarcity of semi-conductors or the war in the Ukraine (harnesses for certain Volkswagens models are made in Ukraine and an engine variant used in a specific Polo model is made in Russia) also have its own set of problems.
“It influences the pre-owned side of the market with stock becoming more expensive owing to scarcity. Rental companies historically used to be large suppliers of good quality used vehicles in recent years. COVID forced many rental companies to hang onto their existing fleets and to not acquiring new fleets owing to travel bans, the unavailability of new stock and a lack of tourists. We believe this situation will return to more normal conditions as the production of new vehicles increase and travel bans are lifted,” Stephan says.
Asked about their location in Arcadia in Pretoria, Stephan says they play an active role in keeping their neighbourhood safe and clean through partnerships with other businesses and the Inner-City Development Programme. “Businesses in the inner-city experience difficulties because of a lack of service delivery and maintenance, and safety is a challenge. We are still in a better area and continuously monitor changes to our environment,” he says.
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