2018 Dealership Conference Speakers

 

 

KEYNOTE SPEAKER:
Dale Pollak

vAuto Founder

Dale Pollak’s career in the automotive industry spans more than two decades. As a dealer, technology entrepreneur and best-selling author, Pollak has helped over 10,000 automotive dealers in North America make dramatic improvements in their new and used vehicle operations.

Pollak pioneered the Velocity Method of Management™. It maximizes a dealer’s profitability through the use of new and used vehicle market-metrics. Pollak crafted this approach during his years as a Cadillac dealer in Chicago in light of his unique circumstances of not being able to physically observe his used vehicle inventory due to blindness.

His investment and market based approach served as the foundation for vAuto, Inc., the company that he founded in 2005.  Since then, the company’s technology and tools have been adopted by thousands of dealerships in North America. In late 2010, AutoTrader.com acquired vAuto, with both companies now operating as a part of the Cox Automotive family. Pollak continues to guide strategic product development/integration for vAuto and other Cox Automotive companies. Prior to vAuto, Pollak helped build and lead Digital Motorworks, Inc. to its successful acquisition in 2002.

Pollak has written four books that detail the application of the Velocity Method of Management™ in dealerships. The latest, Velocity Overdrive: The Road to Reinvention, was released in 2012. His latest book, Like I See It, Obstacles and Opportunities Shaping the Future of Retail Automotive was released October 2017.

Pollak holds a B.S. in Business Administration from Indiana University, a law degree from DePaul University’s College of Law, and is a four-time winner of the American Jurisprudence Award.  In addition, Pollak received the 2010 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, and in 2011, Pollak was inducted into the Chicago Area Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame. In 2014, Pollak was named as Poling Chair at the Indiana University Kelley School of Business.

FEATURED SPEAKER:
Glenn Mercer

GM Automotive LLC

Glenn Mercer is an automotive industry researcher, with three decades of experience, including over 20 years at McKinsey & Company, where he was a leader of the Automotive Practice, participating in hundreds of client studies over that timeframe.   When he left McKinsey as a Partner in 2006, he established his own independent advisory service. In addition to project-based work for investment firms (e.g. KKR, Greenbriar, Kleiner Perkins), he has been an advisor to various industry entities (e.g. Ricardo PLC, the Automotive X Prize, Alliance Bernstein), a Board member for several automotive firms (e.g. Stackpole, Grakon, Tinnerman, Rimstock), an expert witness in automotive legal actions, and a lecturer on automotive economics (at e.g. Case Western, Wharton, Cambridge University).  He is a previous President of the SAA, and a former Director of the International Motor Vehicle Program.  Most recently he completed an extensive project on the Dealership of Tomorrow for NADA in the USA.  Mr. Mercer holds degrees (of varying relevance…) from Dartmouth, Yale, and the Tuck School.  He lives with his wife Ida, a cellist, in Northeast Ohio, although his work has taken him around the world, including stays in the UK, Denmark, Italy, Japan, and elsewhere.  H​is current midlife crisis car is a 1996 Acura NSX (red, of course!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FEATURED SPEAKER:
Brett Coker

Coker Automotive Consultants, LLC

Brett Coker has over 40 years of successful retail dealership and consulting experience in all areas of dealership operation.  He has served as service manager, sales manager, F&I manager, general sales manager, and general manager with both domestic and import franchises (Porsche, Volkswagen, Audi, Mazda, GMC, Cadillac, and Buick).

As vice-president of ASC (Automotive Service Consultants) in Birmingham, Alabama, Mr. Coker developed and implemented numerous consulting and training programs for Jaguar, Buick, Cadillac, Hyundai, and Saturn, as well as consulting services for hundreds of dealerships in the U.S. and Canada.  He has performed innumerable workshops, seminars, 20-group meetings and wrote and co-starred in a series of broadcasts for ASTN.  He also hired, trained, and managed over 30 fixed-operation consultants before starting his own consulting company in 2007.

As president of Coker Automotive Consultants, he is active in working with franchise dealerships, independent repair facilities, RV dealerships, and marine dealerships.  He also moderates his own fixed operations 20-Groups.

Mr. Coker attended Wake Forest University, has CMC accreditation with the Institute of Management Consultants, attended the NADA Dealer Candidate Academy, and is a certified “Train the Trainer” with General Motors.

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