CHARLOTTE, N.C. (March 10, 2004) — American Tire Distributors (ATD ) Inc. has added Ralph Bachemin to its team of equipment specialists.
Mr. Bachemin, who joined ATD in January, handles automotive equipment sales and service for the company's Mobile, Ala., distribution center covering the southern regions of Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi.
“Ralph's job is specifically designed to help both large and small shop owners review the productivity of their shop equipment and provide counsel regarding the correct repairs, replacements or updates,” said Gary Reed, vice president of equipment and supply for Charlotte-based ATD. “In the past, dealers bought equipment and retired with it, but with advancements in the automotive industry there is a need for more constant evaluation and equipment updates to keep dealers' capabilities aligned with the changing needs of vehicle owners.”
Mr. Bachemin said the company is increasingly finding that many dealers are interested in purchasing tire mounting machines capable of handling large diameter wheels and tires. “In the past, larger size fitments were primarily niche aftermarket components,” he said, “but now we're seeing more and more OEMs outfitting vehicles with these larger sizes, which means dealers must be equipped to handle them if they want to stay competitive.”
He joins ATD's network of about 45 equipment specialists across the U.S. In addition to sales and service, the company said its team coordinates on-site equipment demonstrations for dealers as well as offers training seminars in the latest techniques for diagnosing and servicing vehicles.
A veteran of the tire industry, Mr. Bachemin previously worked for Tire Distribution Systems in his hometown of New Orleans. Prior to that, he was a partner in a tire retail center from 1994 until 2002. He began his career in 1974 as an auto technician, eventually working his way to a management position at a Bridgestone/Firestone store in Slidell, La., near New Orleans.
ATD operates 62 distribution centers servicing 35 states.