OARA Convention 2019: Understanding a Changing Industry

OARA Convention 2019: Understanding a Changing Industry
OARA Executive Director Steve Fletcher (left), with guest speakers Scott Robertson, Andrew MacDonald and Chad Counselman. (Photos: Huw Evans & Sukanya Ray Ghosh)

Technology, repair processes and customer expectations are changing the face of auto recycling.

March 28-30 witnessed the 2019 edition of the popular OARA Convention and Trade Show.

This year’s event took place at the Hilton Mississauga/Meadowvale complex, just west of Toronto and delivered a whole host of informative information sessions, workshops, networking opportunities, a substantial on-site trade show as well as a special fundraising event on the Friday evening, with all proceeds going to the OARA Employee Scholarship Program.

Key takeaways from the event this year, included an update on the scrap metal market and insights for recyclers (including the impact of current tariffs on steel) from Mario Venditti of Triple M Metals.

There was also a much-anticipated address on tire recycling and disposal in Ontario, delivered by Sarah Webb of Yes Environmental Services and Solutions (YESS) following the wind down of OTS.

Two industry panels took place this year, and the first one, on March 29, focused on The Changing Industry, including the complexity of late-model vehicle repairs which are having a huge impact on the entire automotive industry, including recyclers. The discussion also focused on the increasing number of electric vehicles entering the marketplace and how that will impact battery disposal and recycling, plus if autonomous vehicles do take hold, how greater fleet utilization will impact vehicle lifespan and the need for salvage parts.

Other highlights included a second panel discussion about how to effectively manage customer needs; plus a look at how SGI Salvage in Saskatchewan and recyclers in the province have partnered to develop a better process for total loss vehicles and the opportunity to sell more parts. There was also an update on the Tundra TakeBack initiative, dealing with Takata airbags and useful workshops from industry vendors including Car-Part, Hollander and Progi.

OARA Executive Director Steve Fletcher welcomes attendees to the 2019 Convention and Trade Show.
Attendees came from far and wide, including from across Canada and the U.S.
Dan Marks of Marks Auto Parts in Buffalo, N.Y. delivered a key note address on the importance of collaboration.
(L-R) Scott Sterling, Jerry Stenko and Jatin Patel from MOECP provided an update on environment regulations as they impact end-of-life vehicle disposal.
The onsite trade show proved popular with attendees on Friday.
Paul D’Adamo, RAS Cores, discussed how to minimize risk and maximize rewards when it comes to Takata airbags.
Representing Monidex at the trade show were Patrick De Carvalho (L) and Sal Polletta.
Michele Morrison, Director, SGI Salvage, delivered a fascinating session on the work between SGI and recyclers in Saskatchewan.
Saturday’s panel discussion focused on knowing your customers and understanding their needs.
Todd Omell, Ron Van Raamsdonk and Leslie Ettienne, manned the Car-Part booth at the trade show.
Impact Auto Auctions had a very special prize this year—a Honda Grom motorcycle!
Colin Anderson (L) and Kyle Garel represented LKQ.
(L-R) OARA Executive Director Steve Fletcher, poses with event speakers Scott Robertson, Andrew MacDonald and Chad Counselman.

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