GM setting aftermarket trend

Sean Carey, president of SCG Management Consultants, introduced an insightful third session at IBIS 2017, which lifted the lid on the relationship between OEMs and in the wider industry.

He began by highlighting that a one per cent loss in OEM marketshare over 10 years is the equivalent of $45bn.

In a bid to reverse that trend, General Motors has launched a new, seamless system called MyPriceLink that it hopes will guarantee safe repairs and become an industry standard in the coming years. Kris Mayer, general director, wholesale channel, customer care and aftersales, General Motors, explained that MyPriceLink is a transparent price list of real parts that is available to the industry in real-time.

It was introduced after a year of talking to partners in the industry and GM says is underlines a growing involvement in the aftermarket.

Kris said, ‘We didn’t have relationships in the industry. They weren’t good or bad, they were non-existent.’ However, he said that when GM began to engage with the industry about MyPriceLink, its strategy was largely well-received.

‘There are a lot of ways to reduce waste in the industry and you still have to be competitive in the market; you still have to offer a product that’s purchasable. But we wanted relationships that go beyond price. I’d say choose your partners wisely.’

One major benefit of MyPriceLink is safety as, explained Kris, as it guarantees that only approved GM parts, priced by GM but measured against the industry, are used in the repair.

He said, ‘It’s important to repair your vehicle in a safe manner. We as automakers have a moral obligation to make sure the vehicle is safe; getting the vehicle repaired correctly is top of our minds at GM. We have designed and tested all our parts. I don’t know what the alternative is, but I’d not be happy if my daughter was driving a car repaired using non-approved parts. Everything fits together and is tested together. Which parts are non-structural?’

The technology itself, which has the capability to render about 2,000 price lists per second, has been developed by OEConncection. Although GM is the first automaker to adopt the technology Guillermo Bill Lopez, general manager and vice president of OEConnection, is confident that more will come on board in the coming months and years. He added that private equity is already in place to take this global.

‘A lot of the automakers that we do business with are interested in the strategy,’ he said. ‘We’re in discussions with another automaker and it’s not inconceivable that three or four will come on board next year.’

Bill said that he imagined MyPriceLink could be standard practice within three to five years, although it will require buy-in from top-level management.

He said, ‘It’s just as much a strategy as it is a technology platform. It’s a paradigm shift and does require buy-in from top level management. They need to ensure the infrastructure is in place to enable them to take this to industry.’

Ibis 2017 wouldn’t be possible without the continued support of headline partners 3M, AkzoNobel, Audatex, Enterprise Rent-A-Car and Fix Auto World.