Automotive retail consultant Laurie Foster on digital retailing, recruiting, and more
On today’s show, we’re pleased to welcome Laurie Foster, Founder and CEO of Foster Strategies Group, an automotive retail consulting service for dealers, vendors and OEMs. Foster begins the conversation by discussing her take on the recent Digital Dealer conference. Although turnout for the conference was lower than usual, Foster says it was still a proactive and dynamic audience at Digital Dealer. Watch the complete segment here.
Mazda is the latest automaker to announce its commitment to producing electric vehicles. The brand currently plans to create 13 electric cars, including three hybrids, five plug-in hybrids, and three fully electric cars by next year. The company also plans to have a completely electric line of vehicles by 2030.
In other EV news, with the help of President Biden’s push for electric vehicles, Volkswagen is shaking things up with a ‘massive’ realignment. Volkswagen plans to launch almost 70 battery-powered vehicles by the year 2030. The automaker will make a final decision on its U.S. electric car strategy by the end of the year.
Ford Motor Company saw a significant increase in its second-quarter earnings, which exceeded expectations. Despite inventory shortages and supply chain woes, Ford is seeing improvement in the auto industry overall. The automaker predicts their yearly pretax earnings to be between 5.5 billion to 6.5 billion dollars.
Speaking of supply chain challenges, General Motors is considering longer-term supply contracts and partnerships with semiconductor manufacturers. This comes after the impact the company saw from global shortages, which forced GM and other automakers to reconsider their supply chain strategies. Despite this shortage, consumer demand for vehicles is still strong.
Recently, Lordstown Motors was questioned about its ability to stay in business. The company’s President stated they had no pre-orders over the first two years of production for its electric pickup truck. It remains to be seen if the company has enough working capital to stay in business over the year.
Stellantis and the National Business League have created a national program to create business opportunities for black suppliers in the marketplace. This partnership will support the development of over 2.9 million black businesses. This partnership aims to bridge the gap between public and private sectors within the Federal government. Over the next three years, Stellantis also plans to facilitate the launch of a virtual training and development portal.
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