Manufacturers are offering dealers more acceptable agreements in the wake of the collapse two years ago of efforts to fashion a model agreement template for the industry, reports Mike Molino, president of the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA)
“Manufacturers and dealers want the same outcomes,” Molino said. “It’s just the matter of getting to them. We see a lot of progress on dealer agreements. They are much better than they have been in the past, and maybe we’re not giving manufacturers enough recognition for that.”
Molino’s comments were made following RVDA Board meeting earlier this month at the Disney Contemporary Resort in Orlando, Fla.
Also attending the meeting, which Molino billed as a “strategy session,” were Recreation Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA) President Dave Humphreys, Coachmen Industries Inc. Chairman and RVIA First Vice Chairman Claire Skinner, National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds (ARVC) President Linda Profaizer and George Cargo, president of the Recreation Vehicle Aftermarket Association (RVAA).
In official business, the RVDA board approved the recommendation of the industrywide Go RVing Coalition to continue the Go RVing market expansion program for another three years. The board also approved minor changes in the goals included in RVDA’s strategic plan.
Efforts by the RVDA and RVIA to come to agreement two years ago on a model agreement broke down over whether mandatory arbitration should be included.
“Most manufacturers have binding mediation and arbitration as an option,” Molino said. “That’s all we asked for — that it not be mandatory.”
Molino said he couldn’t point to an instance where mediation or arbitration had been used to settle a dispute between a dealer and a manufacturer.
“In most cases, the differences are being resolved without any kind of formal process,” Molino said.