Once again, the SEMA Show was a busy week for Steele Rubber Products.
There were several highlights, but the biggest may have been the annual ARMO Reception. ARMO is the council of SEMA that represents the automotive restoration portion of our industry. This year ARMO awarded “Business of the Year” to Steele Rubber Products.
Our staff was completely taken by surprise by this award, and very honored to be recognized for our commitment to the restoration industry. This award helps confirm to us that we are doing something right by still manufacturing our parts by hand and giving every customer the best service we can provide.
It was hard to not see Steele Rubber Products at the SEMA show. We counted sixteen vehicles at the show that featured the Steele logo on the vehicle or show boards. A 1960 Cadillac Coupe Deville, built by Justin Carrillo, sat at the front of the show sporting Steele license plates. Justin is a great young builder that we have known for several years, and we were happy to bring him to the show to feature his incredible ride. In fact, General Motors agreed with us and awarded the car “Best GM in the Show”. Other great cars at the show that were supported by Steele included a 1960 Cadillac convertible built for Olympic speed skater Apolo Anton Ohno and a fantastic 1958 Chevy Nomad built by our friend Mike Cooper from Spanky’s Hot Rods.
This year’s SEMA Show was the busiest in years for all of the vendors on display. We hope this is a sign that the economy is starting to rebound. More importantly, the show gave us a chance to see old friends in the industry and meet new customers. Many of the icons of the classic car and hot rodding hobby stopped by our booth to chat and talk about upcoming vehicles that they will be using Steele parts for. Dennis Gage of the television show “My Classic Car” stopped by to sign autographs, Rich Evans of the “Car Warriors” show spent some time discussing his next big projects, and even legendary hot rod builder Gene Winfield came by to talk with the staff.
Overall, SEMA gives us a chance to talk with the most important people in our industry — our customers. We may not have the biggest or flashiest booth at SEMA, and we definitely do not have the sexiest parts at the show, but from the conversations we had at SEMA we do know we manufacture a very important automotive part.
We’ve brought back a lot of great ideas from SEMA, including new products, better ways to communicate with our customers and improvements to our parts. And, of course, we brought home the “Business of the Year” trophy!