BETHESDA, Md. (Aug. 8, 2006) — The Automotive Undercar Trade Organization (AUTO) has joined the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) as its newest segment.
“AUTO members will benefit greatly by operating under the AAIA umbrella,” said Malcolm Sissmore, AUTO president and vice president of sales and marketing for Ultrafit Exhaust Systems. “AUTO will still be AUTO, only better, by leveraging the extensive resources and benefits offered by AAIA to achieve its objectives.”
Mr. Sissmore said the non-profit trade association will continue to maintain its own board of directors as well as membership benefits and programs. AUTO provides member benefits, information resources and value-added services to manufacturers, warehouses and service providers in the automotive aftermarket.
The partnership of AUTO and AAIA, which represents more than 100,000 repair shops, part stores and distribution outlets, is an example of industry unity and consolidation in order to meet members needs, said AAIA president and CEO Kathleen Schmatz.
“A number of AUTO members are also part of AAIA's membership, so the industry will again benefit by eliminating duplicate association dues,” she said. “Of significant importance is that AUTO's repair shop members will bring insight into the creation and launch of the new Car Care Professionals Network (CCPN), formerly Independent Service Providers within AAIA.”