George Gatto’s family has been in the motorcycle dealership business for more than 50 years. So it’s really saying something when words like “historical best” are used.
Still, 2017 may turn out to be one of the best yet for the Pittsburgh-area Gatto family despite the fact that they – and the powersports industry as a whole – confronted a major challenge. Both the industry’s unit sales and Gatto’s were down in 2017 versus the prior year.
Despite this obstacle, the Gatto Cycle Shop registered a more than $100,000 improvement in net profit in 2017.
How did they achieve that?
There are a number of reasons George Gatto could point to but chief them along are two commitments he made in 2017: in-store and in-depth management training with industry leader Garage Composites and membership in one of their 20 clubs, a peer group of noncompeting dealers that seeks ways to become more profitable.
“I could not effectively run my dealerships without being a member of a solid 20 group,” Gatto says. “It made a huge impact, especially holding us accountable to our business commitments.”
Gatto complimented that year-around peer group education with training for his staff. He budgeted for both Garage Composites’ in-store training and their more in-depth Management Training Academy for his senior managers.
As a result, Gatto saw his multi-brand metric store’s net profit increase by more than $103,000 over 2016.
“The aforementioned training and 20 club participation is how I can move the needle,” Gatto says. “Yes the industry is slowing down, but we aren’t!”