Shop owners and their staffs packed their bags, booked flights, loaded up their vehicles and headed to Orlando, Fla., last month to take in 267 training classes, a trade show and Florida sun
Orlando, Fla.—It had been four years. Four years since Worldpac’s Supplier & Training Expo (STX) held it’s last in-person event. So perhaps it wasn’t surprising that a record number 2,500 shop owners and their staffs packed their bags, booked flights, loaded up their vehicles and headed to Orlando, Fla., last month for the bi-annual event that was last presented virtually in 2020 during the pandemic.
During a keynote address that kicked off STX, Bob Cushing, EVP of Professional Business, Advance, and president of Worldpac, said the aftermarket’s future is as sunny as Florida sunshine.
“It’s a great time to be in our industry, which is stronger than ever. We’re in a really great place — better than we’ve been in for the last eight to 10 years. It’s a really interesting time for us to be in with continued industry growth.”
The bright outlook resonated with attendees as they reconnected with old friends and made new ones after a long pandemic lay off. In addition to the event’s 267 unique training classes, there was also the Expo trade floor, which set the stage for supplier vendors to showcase what’s new and what’s coming. In a post-event survey, STX organizers shared feedback from attendees and exhibitors alike. Here’s what a few had to say:
- Tonya Johnson, Advance retail general manager and STX scholarship recipient: “It was an amazing experience! The staff, the team, the classes and the instructors were all so amazing. I had an experience that will be with me for a very long time. I made new connections I never would have made had it not been for me coming there.”
- John Chakarian, Bimmer PhD Motorsports in Pasadena, Calif.: “If you are a progressive, forward-moving shop you MUST attend a STX expo. No matter where your level of learning is. WorldPac has a way to make it more successful. Try it and see for yourself.”
- Jordan Woodell, Advance commercial parts professional and STX scholarship recipient: “I was amazed at the organization, professionalism, and kindness of all the people involved in STX. The amount of information contained in the 24 hours’ worth of classes will prove to be invaluable in my career of providing excellent service to my customers.”
- Johanna Reichert, Bimmer PhD Motorsports in Pasadena, Calif. “STX is an amazing thing to experience. This is my third time attending an STX, and every time I go, I feel they outdid themselves from the last one. The training is top notch, the accommodations are great, and you are missing out if you do not attend.”
- Jose Ventura, Advance retail general manager and STX scholarship recipient: “The classes were very informative, and the expo was outstanding. The Worldpac team made you feel comfortable, and the teachers were outstanding. I feel that all employees should attend at least one class or the expo.”
- Andrew Dremak, Mechanic Advisor and STX exhibitor: “Mechanic Advisor was a first time attendee and exhibitor at STX and we were honored to be a part of the Technet/Worldpac Solutions booth along with our joint partner Tekmetric. Overall, the two evenings of the Expo proved to be a great experience engaging with top shops from around the country. It was fun to interact with attendees in person and share how we can help grow their business along with providing more insight in our joint partnership. We can’t wait to attend STX again in 2024.”
- Michael Sigler, Advance commercial parts pro and STX scholarship recipient: “It was a fantastic event, well-oiled machine! The staff and crew put on unbelievable show. Instructors were top notch and the information they delivered was very impressive and informative.”
EXPO PHOTO GALLERY