IARA Summer Roundtable kicks off in Toronto this week

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Remarketers from the U.S. and Canada are converging on Toronto this week as the International Automotive Remarketers’ Alliance, coinciding with its 15th anniversary, hosts its annual summer roundtable meeting outside the U.S. for the first time.

Scheduled to start Tuesday at the Sheraton Centre, the three-day international event is expected to see over 300 attendees from the U.S. and Canada gather to discuss all aspects of vehicle remarketing.

“The IARA Canadian Committee has grown and developed quickly over the last four years, all with the goal of assisting, educating and sharing knowledge with each other about the remarketing world,” says Steve Macaluso, managing director of Copart Canada and co-chair of the IARA Canadian Committee. “We are very happy to see this event come to Canada.”

The IARA Canadian Committee roots can be traced back to one of these summer roundtables in the U.S. The last four years have seen the organization grow north of the border, which has sparked the desire for a Canadian operation-focused group.

“Members, both remarketers and consignors, really open up and share with one another during these roundtables. It’s an industry-focused event with great interaction and a real emphasis on current topics of interest,” Macaluso says.

John Paonessa, VP of remarketing solutions at GM Financial Canada and fellow IARA Canadian Committee co-chair, says attendance is traditionally made up of consignors like OEMs, captives and larger leasing and finance companies.

“Dealers are definitely welcome, but the show is more centered around the consignor space,” he says.

The agenda is available online and clearly focuses on the kind of market-specific issues that appeal to executives on both sides of the border.

Tuesday is made up of committee meetings including membership, standards, certification and social media.

Wednesday will start with a consignor only meeting before Maria Soklis, president of Cox Automotive Canada, opens the second day as the morning speaker. The rest of the day includes presentations and roundtable sessions.

Keynote speakers include Scotia Economics senior economist Carlos Gomes and Kristi Webb, president and CEO of Element Fleet Services.

Michael Pinball Clemons will address the crowd ahead of the presidential reception on Wednesday evening.

Thursday will have a half-day certification testing session.