Congratulations to the three Hino dealers who made a clean sweep of the top three positions in the commercial vehicle category at the annual MSX (previously Sewell’s) NADA Business of the Year (BOTY) awards. This competition – now in its 23rd year – honours the exceptional performance of managers and their teams at automotive dealerships throughout South Africa.
The results are based on the annual financial performance of more than 1 500 franchised dealers throughout South Africa who are measured monthly by MSX International. It is the only independent validation of dealer profitability and the awards recognise the top performers across five categories. The recently announced awards were based on financial performances in pandemic-hit 2020.
Hino Algoa, of Port Elizabeth, was the winner in the commercial vehicle category, followed by Hino Buffalo, of East London, and Hino Pietermaritzburg in KwaZulu-Natal.
William Whitefield, the Dealer Principal of Hino Algoa, says he was an immensely proud person winning this important award for the first time. In fact, Hino Algoa, which is part of the CFAO Motors SA Group and was established 36 years ago, had previously not even been in the first three in this important category of BOTY.
“We didn’t develop a specific strategy to win this award but stuck to our regime of hard work and focussing on the customer at all times,” says Whitefield. “We also made sure we looked after our staff during the COVID-19 pandemic and tried to have some fun while doing so.
“We hope to repeat this success achieved in 2020 with another category win in the current year’s competition. However, we are not planning to do anything special in terms of the way we do business. But we are also ready to adapt our business model if demanded by changing circumstances.”
Nelius Cloete, the Dealer Principal of runner-up Hino Buffalo and another member of the CFAO Motors SA Group, also says he and his team did not have any special strategy to score well in the competition where they had also never been placed in the top three previously.
“We managed our stock carefully and drove expense control harder than ever,” says Cloete. “We made use of every available and relevant electronic marketing platform while focussing on maintaining regular contact with our customers, including sharing information with them electronically. These interventions, allied with selling a magnificent product and a lot of support from Hino South Africa, enabled us to grow our sales profitability.
“We are not planning any changes to the way we do business to achieve similar success in BOTY this year as we already running a lean business, while guarding against being too lean. However, from the start of the year we have employed another technician and sales executive with the aim of growing labour and vehicle sales. Each member of our team will continue to focus on managing their key performance areas while seeking new opportunities for growth.”
Hino Pietermaritzburg may have finished third in the 2021 BOTY contest but this is a team which was the category winner in 2017, 2018 and 2019 as well as being a finalist last year, so it has a sterling track record in terms of its outstanding financial performance. This was a team that was also the runner-up for the Hino Dealer of the Year award last year.
Hino Pietermaritzburg has a long history having originally been a member of the Dan Perkins Group and subsequently becoming part of the Bidvest McCarthy Group.
Dealer principal Pretesh Singh says there is no specific strategy to win the BOTY award again but the dealership’s on-going high placings results from a motivated team, various internal programmes and a strong focus on going the extra mile for its customers.
“We were also continually active in satisfying the needs of those of our customers who were performing essential services in the hard lockdowns for COVID-19. Basically, we concentrate on ways in which we can make continuous improvements to the way we do business – a strategy known as Kaizen in Japan,” says Singh.
Well done to all.