The Mercedes-Benz group of companies in South Africa (MBSA) crowned Garden City Commercials in Pietermaritzburg its Dealer of the Year for 2011 at a gala event held in George. The accolade, based on performance excellence, is hotly contested as the top honour bestowed by the automotive manufacturer in its dealer network.
An euphoric Marius Barnard, dealer principal at Garden City Commercials accepted the award from Dr Martin Zimmermann, CEO of MBSA.
The award comes on the back of superb financial results for MBSA in 2011, who has recorded a 4% revenue growth over the previous year, and celebrates the significant contribution made by the dealer partners to the success of the business.
Judging takes place in three categories - the best brand centre; independent; and market centre operations. The winner of each category competes for the overall Chairman's Award title. Brand centres are major metropolitan dealerships which represent exclusively any one brand from the MBSA stable. The market centres and the independent dealerships represent more than one brand in a particular region.
Bottling plant now a showroom
Both quantitative and qualitative measures are considered, including performance against defined performance areas, as well as attitude, willingness and co-operation, community involvement and staff development.
Dr Zimmermann commended Garden City Commercials for their support and co-operation through the year, especially in delivering on the brand promise. "They have upgraded what was once a bottling plant into a sustainable business - a modern, customer focused facility, with motivated staff."
The dealership, a market centre which sells all three of the MBSA commercial vehicle brands (Mercedes-Benz, Freightliner and Fuso), was the best in its category on Service Customer Satisfaction. It also dominated in the fields of finance penetration and meeting BBBEE targets.
"Garden City Commercials truly lives our brand values, fosters good business ethics and embraces the role which MBSA has chosen to play with respect to the environment, the community and among our business partners," Dr Zimmermann said.
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