Genmar asks industry to adopt later model year

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – Genmar has picked a date for its 2005 model year launch, and is urging the industry to follow its lead in a later model year, Irwin Jacobs stated in a memo to his dealers yesterday.

Genmar will adhere to the August 1, U.S. Coast Guard official model year change and will commit not to ship 2005 product prior to that date, according to the memo from Jacobs.

Jacobs called on dealers to support him in what he called a "sorely needed industry change."

"Specifically, I ask that if you are selling any boat brands other than Genmar’s and their dealer meeting and product introductions are not in the fall, you do everything you can to try and convince those companies to change their model year introductions and dealer meetings in order to support the needs and best interests of all their dealers," said Jacobs.

A survey Jacobs sent out regarding a later model year start was highly supported by Genmar’s 17 dealers, with more than 99 percent in favor of moving model year introductions and dealer meetings later into the year, according to his memo.

For everyone not so willing to hop on board, Jacobs commented, "Frankly, they can and will do whatever they want, but we’re not going to wait for an industry consensus when our Genmar dealers need and believe so strongly in a situation such as this one."

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Planning for a later dealer meeting has already begun, and is scheduled to take place from September 12 - 15 in Las Vegas, according to memo. For the first time in Genmar history, Jacobs stated, all of the company’s dealers "will be able to see Genmar’s complete line of boats in one place at one time." The boats will be displayed at the Las Vegas Convention Center and on the water at Lake Mead.

In addition, Jacobs made a promise to his dealers that this meeting will be "the best, most exciting, most productive and most fun company dealer meeting ever."

"I’ve said this before and mean it with a passion: the boat dealers in America aren’t making the profits they should and need to have in order to survive and build a healthy business for the risks and hard work they put into their dealerships everyday. I believe its getting worse rather than better," said Jacobs. "I know over the years Genmar hasn’t done everything exactly right, but I also know we’ve tried harder with more creative, unique programs and ideas than anyone else in the boating industry has."

Jacobs concluded his message urging dealers to fight the status quo, and to "stand up and be counted and partner with Genmar."

"I believe if we work together in implementing later dealers meetings and this new model year introduction, our Genmar dealers will consistently sell more boats with greater profits then in past years."

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