JSE-listed vehicle retailer Combined Motor Holdings (CMH) achieved a significant turnaround in its financial performance in the second half of its financial year to end-February 2021.
- Industry News
- 7 May 2021
The busy Hino dealership in Pietermaritzburg saw off stiff competition from Unitrans Volkswagen Commercial in Alberton and Hino Pinetown to remain the MSX NADA Business of the Year in 2020.
Director of the National Automobile Dealers’ Association (NADA), Gary McCraw, complimented the dealership for winning the award for the third year in a row against some 60 other commercial vehicle dealerships.
Asked what his secret sauce is, dealer principal, Pretesh Singh, said he is privileged to have a management team that literally grew up in the business, rising to managers after starting at the bottom. Over the years, this team became good friends and developed a deep understanding of the business, all of which has helped to make their Friday meetings with the sales staff very productive.
The business has a lean staff of 22 people, many of whom have also been with the dealership, a member of the Bidvest McCarthy Group, for a decade or more. Singh said he is grateful for the staff continuity, which is rare in the motor trade and which has enabled the dealership to render consistent, high levels of service to all clients, regardless of whether they own one truck or a fleet of vehicles, and this has, in turn, led to some customers being with the dealership for over 20 years.
Singh himself started at Hino Pietermaritzburg as a costing clerk over a decade ago. He was a service manager for six years before being appointed dealer principal in August 2017.
He credits the training and support given by the Bidvest McCarthy Group, alongside Hino South Africa’s dealer management and development programmes, for enabling him and his staff.
Hino Pietermaritzburg has four double service bays and also offers tyre fitment with wheel alignment and balancing, as well as the regassing of air conditioning systems. Customers, who include G4S’ Cash in Transit division, make full use of after-hours servicing and a mobile service unit.
The dealership is one of a few “green businesses” in KwaZulu-Natal’s capital that has installed large water tanks to capture rain water, which is used to reduce the use of potable water on site.
Interest from investors in pre-owned vehicle franchise dealerships is increasing, according to the WesBank-certified franchise InspectaCar.
The numbers of female car buyers are on the rise around the world and forward looking bosses are all looking at ways to welcome them into showrooms.
Steve Jobs, the late CEO of Apple, once said that great things in business are never done by one person, they are done by a team of people.