The event drew shareholders and vendors from across North America for a truly special occasion.
May 4-6 saw Bestbuy Distributors host its 2023 Annual General Meeting and Trade Show. Each year, Bestbuy shareholders from across Canada and vendors from across North America attend and it is a major highlight on the automotive aftermarket industry calendar. The 2023 event was special, with a 70th Anniversary celebration of the founding of Bestbuy in 1953.
New board announced
President & Chief Operating Officer Bill Hay took the opportunity to introduce the 2023 Bestbuy Board of Directors at the Special 70th Anniversary Awards gala on the evening on May 5. Serving as Chairman of the Board & Chief Executive Officer is Doug Wilson of Fat Guys Auto Parts; in the Vice-Chair role is Gary Thibault, from The Partsman. Treasurer for 2023, is Scott Anderson, Peterborough Automotive; while Tony Racioppo, Fincham Automotive Supplies; John Brunelle, Parts Stop Auto & Industrial; Michael MacPherson, Down East Auto Parts; Rob Dow, Jack Dow Auto Supplies; and Arthur Edwards, Northwest Auto Parts serve as Directors.
The Bestbuy Board of Directors also took the opportunity to present its annual contribution to support the SickKids Family Heart Centre, in conjunction with Dr. Mike Seed, the Division Head of Cardiology at SickKids in Toronto. The board presented Seed with a cheque of $15,775.00—donated from the money raised in support of the Heart Centre.
Awards of excellence
Hay and Wilson also took the opportunity to present several vendor Awards of Excellence during the gala evening. Hay stated, “These awards officially celebrate the vendor community who are instrumental in Bestbuy’s success and growth.”
Dorman Products received the prestigious Horace J. Pratt 2022 Vendor of the Year award in recognition of service excellence, sales performance, and support. Andrew Connor, Jason Robinson, and David Robinson of Dorman accepted the award.
Additional vendor awards were presented at the gala evening. These included: BBB Industries for the Marketing Partner Award recipient. Meanwhile, Mevotech and ProMax jointly received the Bestbuy Partner Award, while the Cornerstone Partner Award went to Bosch Canada. Liqui Moly received the Rising Star Award.
Shareholder anniversary awards
The large group of 250 guests applauded the seven recipients for Shareholder Anniversary Recognition, acknowledging the years of Bestbuy membership support and service. Hay and Wilson presented the celebratory distinctions to George Solomon & Sons, 10 years; Fincham Automotive Supplies, 10 years; Les Pièces G.R., 25 years; Pièces D’Auto Charron, 25 years; Distribution Pièces D’Auto Mobus, 30 years; Raco Auto Supply, 35 years; and Heimpel Automotive, 55 years.
The assembled audience also gave a standing ovation to Wayne & Patricia Heimpel, as they took centre stage. The Heimpels have now sold the business and are enjoying the next leg of their journey-namely retirement. Wayne Heimpel took the opportunity to talk about his time with Bestbuy and the friendships and success that have resulted.
Following the awards, the evening featured special entertainment, courtesy of the multi-talented Painchaud family. Able to play multiple instruments with perfect pitch and combine them with dazzling visuals, the Painchaud delivered a truly unique and interactive experience that wowed the audience.
On Saturday, May 6, the trade show officially opened at Bestbuy’s Toronto warehouse location on American Drive. As a special occasion, attendees assembled for a special 70th Anniversary group photo, in a similar fashion to the company’s 60th anniversary celebration in 2013. Multiple products were on display and there was ample opportunity to network and conduct business.
Hats off to the Bestbuy team for another superb event and we look forward to the next one!