Blog 2: Early Activity on the GTE Trade Show Floor

Bob Ulrich
Posted on November 5, 2019
Sentury Tire USA is highlighting this 2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon, with size 37x13.50R22 Landsail CLX-12 RT tires, in it's booth.
Sentury Tire USA is highlighting this 2020 Jeep Gladiator Rubicon, with size 37x13.50R22 Landsail CLX-12 RT tires, in it's booth.

Five blogs in five days in Las Vegas continues! Yesterday's blog was a preview of Monday's Tire Industry Awards Banquet. It also included a teaser about the new Kenda Klever AT2 KR628, which

Kenda Tire USA was launching in conjunction with Automotive Aftermarket Industry Week in Las Vegas Nov. 4-8.

To read about the Klever AT2 KR628, click here.

On Nov. 4, I wandered about the Global Tire Expo (GTE) trade show floor in the South Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. Suppliers were still putting up their booths; the show officially starts today. But I still managed to get a quick interview with Sentury Tire USA Inc.'s Max Wee, executive vice president, and Nick Gutierrez, territory sales director.

"Sentury Tire has gone through an overhaul on the re-brand development of Delinte and Landsail, and we're introducing a new marketing campaign," said Gutierrez, who says the new look and feel about the brands starts with the new website. He describes it as "user-friendly tech."

"It connects the dots with the dealer and the consumer."

Wee said the website used to be geared toward distributors. "Now it is consumer-related, without leaving the dealers behind."

A social media campaign is part of the strategy. "At the end of the day, it's to help the dealer sell more tires," said Gutierrez.

I also noticed a few things about the GTE floor plan. First, Hunter Engineering Co., which annually has one of the largest booths, will be front and center when the attendees check out the show this week. Among tire companies, Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. has the primo spot next to Hunter.

Not counting the booths outside the convention center, the GTE trade show is divided into three parts: the front of the ground floor, the back of the ground floor, and upstairs. Over the last 10 years, a number of the Chinese tire companies that originally displayed their wares upstairs have moved downstairs. And the ones that were in the back on the ground floor have moved into the front section. Chinese tire makers are definitely making an impact at the show.

I am going to end this blog with my favorite quote from last night's awards banquet. Gene Beck, "retired" president of Beck Tire International and a member of the Tire Industry Hall of Fame, was guest speaker. At 86 years young, he talked about the association, life and faith. And work -- he continues to go to work almost every day. That includes calling me up on occasion to let me know what he thinks of my editorials! 

On the eve of the Tire Industry Association's 100th anniversary -- he attended the association's 50th anniversary convention and hopes to make it to Las Vegas next year -- he passed along his version of an old adage that helped him in business:

"Early to bed, early to rise, work like the dickens, and advertise!"

Related Topics: 2019 Global Tire Expo, B.O.B, Beck Tire International, Gene Beck, Kenda Klever AT2, Max Wee, Nick Gutierrez, TIA Hall of Fame

Bob Ulrich Editor
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