An historic moment took place on Tuesday March 17 with the official formation of the country’s first Australian Motor Dealer Council (AMDC).

In a meeting conducted at the Sir Jack Brabham Automotive Centre of Excellence in Brisbane, key Dealer council chairs representing the top vehicle brands in Australia agreed on the creation of the new council and to support funding for the national secretariat of the Australian Automotive Dealer Association Ltd (AADA).

The AMDC, which will consist of the elected chairpersons for each Dealer council, will be led by former Managing Director of Mazda Australia, Doug Dickson.

‘Australia’s motor Dealers deserve and must have proper advocacy – and the formation of the new Australian Motor Dealer Council will be another critical step towards achieving this’, says AADA CEO Patrick Tessier.

‘AADA has accomplished so much in a short space of time, but in order for Dealers to be appropriately represented in years to come; the AMDC is an essential part of the mix.
After Australian manufacturing ceases, Dealer investment in the automotive industry will be even greater – in fact, the auto industry will be almost entirely made up of Dealers and OEMs. As a consequence, an effective and multi-faceted structure needs to be in place to facilitate the future direction and challenges Australia’s automotive industry will face,’ explains Tessier.

The March 17 meeting addressed how the AMDC will work and how it will contribute to even better advocacy for Dealers and Australia’s automotive industry.

The process of forming the AMDC has been long in the making, explains AADA Chairman, Ian Field:

‘AMDC represents countless hours of planning, negotiations and a determination to improve communication in our industry’, he said.

Whilst most vehicle manufacturers in Australia have in place an elected Dealer Council to manage the relationship between the manufacturer and dealership network; Dealer Council members have historically had little influence over the outcomes of issues put forward.
Though the inner-workings of Dealer Councils vary between brands, there are a number of common issues faced by all Dealer Councils that have, for now, been dealt with independently.

With the creation of the AMDC however, Dealer Councils will be united across the nation, opening a new forum to share ideas and troubleshoot common challenges.

The formation of the AMDC will also add value to the AADA, explains Mr Tessier:
‘The AMDC will advance the relationship between Dealers and manufacturers, but also Dealers and the AADA as well. Facilitated by the AMDC, the link between Australia’s Dealers and the AADA will be stronger than ever, and we’re looking forward to consulting with the Council and discussing objectives.’

A number of scheduled meetings will take place this year, including at the AADA National Dealer Convention in August, as both the new AMDC and AADA work to create a better operating environment for Dealers.

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