5/27/2009 2:24:00 PM
Stronger dealers can pull away
The ‘expand or retrench’ dilemma is one faced by virtually every company in all business sectors in the current climate. There is logic in both options, but the safe one is generally to strip down the operation, focus on core business and become extremely efficient. Then there is the other. Searching for scale, skills or new markets is brave, and only possible for businesses with strong foundations. So, the sight of Paul Hooper of Uplands Mobile expanding his business is one that many dealers can be inspired by.
He appears to have assessed the market conditions and realised the need for scale and capability to achieve the necessary growth, and is on the right side of the wild, wide-eyed ambition that has seen many other dealers fall by the wayside. Taking on Mobile Radio will solidify his clout in the local area, remove the smaller players and give him expertise to push beyond his home turf.
He is not alone in investing now, with the foresight to emerge stronger from the recession.
While many dealers chased the monthly commissions, there were some laying the building blocks for long-term, stable, and yes, boring businesses. It is a myth that all business dealers fall into the ‘sensible’ category. Many took risks, cut corners and are now paying the price. The revenue share models, end of big commissions, operators’ direct strategies and broader shrinking in the economy has exposed a clearer division between the high-risk dealers, and the more stable businesses.
And while the current climate is undoubtedly painful for everyone, there is a clear opportunity for strong dealers to pull away from the weaker and more opportunistic players.