Two dealer associations may form merger

The joint boards of the SouthWestern Association (SWA) and Canada West Equipment Dealers Association (CWEDA) recently voted to move forward with a merger of these two associations to form the new Western Equipment Dealers Association (WEDA). This action was the first step toward a merger, which requires a vote by dealer members of each association to be completed this summer.


Upon member approval, the merged association will be positioned to provide more access to programs and services for members, enhanced training and recruitment, and one unified voice for the combined members. “The goals, objectives and vision of our two associations are closely aligned,” stated John Schmeiser, CWEDA executive vice president and CEO. “A major reason for proceeding with this merger is our members will benefit from a larger, financially strong association that will provide more services to address the needs of today’s equipment dealers.”


Once the merger is completed, Schmeiser said dealer members, endorsed providers, industry suppliers and association management clients of both the SouthWestern and Canada West Equipment Dealers associations will experience little to no change in their daily interactions with their association. He said the goal is to make the merger effective Sept. 1, 2014.


The merged association will continue to support its affiliation with the North American Equipment Dealers Association (NAEDA). “Our joint boards of directors have acknowledged that there has been consolidation at the equipment dealership level, but not within our associations,” added Jeff Flora, SWA CEO. “We believe the timing is right for us to lead association consolidation and that a successful merger of our associations will promote further consolidation with equipment dealer associations affiliated with the North American Equipment Dealers Association.”


The respective boards of directors of CWEDA and SWA determined that the name of the merged association should be the Western Equipment Dealers Association (WEDA). The name incorporates some aspects of the two associations while acknowledging the history and legacy of each.


The Western Equipment Dealers Association will represent dealers in the Canadian provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, as well as the states of Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and New Mexico. To be eligible for admission as a member of the Western Equipment Dealers Association, a dealer must be primarily engaged in the retail hardware business or in the retail sale and service of agricultural, construction, industrial, forestry, outdoor power, lawn and garden and/or turf equipment.


About Canada West Equipment Dealers Association


CWEDA represents approximately 400 farm, industrial and outdoor power equipment dealers in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and British Columbia. One of the largest equipment dealer associations in North America, CWEDA provides products and services that include industry and manufacturer relations, industry information and intelligence, business support and educational initiatives. The association’s many programs are either available only to members or provided at a reduced cost for members. CWEDA is one of 15 affiliates that make up the North American Equipment Dealers Association (NAEDA). Visit cweda.ca for more information.


About SouthWestern Association

Founded in 1889, the SouthWestern Association represents nearly 1,800 farm, construction, industrial and outdoor power equipment dealers, as well as 2,400 hardware retailers. Led by CEO Jeff Flora, the association spans eight states — Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. The largest regional trade association of its kind in North America, the SouthWestern Association offers members a comprehensive array of dealer-oriented legislative, educational and communications services, ranging from lobbying to legal, accounting and marketing support. Visit swassn.com for more information.

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