In late July, MFI hosted the first ever Dealer Summit at our facility in Howard Lake, MN….and it was fantastic! Nearly 30 people representing 10 different Dealers traveled from all over the country to be with us for two days of product training, information sharing, and a little bit of fun too.
Our Dealers are incredibly important to our overall success, and so far in 2022, our Dealer network represents about 30% of our equipment sales. These Dealers are committed to their customers success and representing MFI equipment allows them a great option when they need to problem solve something related to product finishing.
We started the first day of the Dealer Summit at a hotel and conference center on the west side of the Minneapolis metro area. MFI General Manager, Marci Theisen, kicked off the meeting with some opening comments and then we transitioned into our sales and marketing support tactics for our authorized Dealers. We also had a live case study via video from MFI customer and partner, Roush Yates Manufacturing Solutions, where the group learned how they use their MFI equipment to vastly improve finishing times and improve racing performance because of it.
For dinner, we decided there is nothing more Minnesotan than getting out on one of our 10,000 lakes. The group did a dinner cruise on Lake Minnetonka. We cruised around, enjoyed a fabulous dinner, a few drinks, and some excellent conversation.
On day two, the group spent most of the day at the MFI manufacturing facilities in Howard Lake, which is about 40 miles west of the Twin Cities. There we broke into small groups to allow for lots of interaction and focus on three key areas of the business.
1. The Lab. Tommy Mathisen, Director of Technology, demonstrated how parts get run through the lab machines at MFI. A big part of the sales process is often running sample parts at the MFI lab to determine the exact right formula to exact the specific finish the client is looking for. Tommy ran some parts and talked about the process MFI uses to ensure the best solution for each project is developed.
2. Product Roadmap. Cole Mathisen, National Sales Manager (and nephew to Tommy), walked through the future roadmap of the HZ Series High Energy Centrifugal Barrel finishing equipment product line. We are currently very close to introducing the HZ-175, which is the first MFI machine with 48” long barrels, along with 2 other sizes currently in development.
3. Equipment Maintenance and Support. Cory Carr, Engineering & Production Manager, explained the optimal maintenance schedule for the various HZ Series pieces of equipment. Actual field service repairs are quite rare, but the on-going maintenance is very important to understand and to extend the life of the equipment.
In a post event survey, our Dealers who attended gave the event very high marks and provided some ideas for making the next Summit even better, which by the way is being planned for 2024. Thank you to every person who attended, and to all our authorized dealers here in the United States and around the world for helping us build a growing business and more importantly, provide great finishing solutions to our customers.