RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. — Sumitomo Rubber North America Inc. (SRNA) is organizing a bi-monthly digital conference call with its direct and associate dealers to discuss activities related to the COVID-19 impact on the tire industry.
The initiative — SRNA COVID-19 Dealer Resource Forum — will kick off April 14 and take place every two weeks thereafter, SRNA said. The interactive calls are expected to last 45 to 60 minutes.
Sumitomo Rubber's Falken-brand will be central to the discussion, the company said, as SRNA executives intend to cover trending issues and provide market data to help dealers gain a better understanding of evolving market conditions.
The discussions will cover consumer tires (aftermarket and OE) and truck/bus tires, as well as Dunlop motorcycle tires, SRNA said.
"Based on the fact that large quantities of the U.S. population are under shelter-in-place orders, we felt now was the best time to have a dedicated conversation with our dealers about modifications to their operations, as well as discuss adapting marketing and sales efforts to accommodate a severely modified marketplace," Darren Thomas, Falken brand senior vice president of sales and marketing, said.
"Our goal is to provide a resource to collect and distribute information we've developed internally, as well as gathered from our external sources, to help our tire dealers cope in this challenging and dynamic business environment." Thomas added.
SRNA will invite its direct and associate dealers to join the forum.