Report: Last Decade Witnessed $18B in Distribution Channel Shift

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Jan. 4, 2018—More than $18 billion in car and light truck products shifted among the five major distribution channels between 2007-17, according to research from the latest Lang Aftermarket iReport.

That represents the largest car and light truck product shift in aftermarket distribution since World War II.

Three of the five major light vehicle aftermarket channels—integrated ($11.5 billion increase), traditional ($5.1 billion increase), and import ($3.3 billion increase)—have grown their U.S. product share over the past decade. Those three channels combined to add $20 billion in product sales between 2007-17.

The “integrated” channel is characterized by product ownership, or franchise affiliation, not changing hands from the time products are purchased from manufacturers to the point of sale to an installer.

The “traditional” channel, multi-tier distribution involves traditional warehouses and traditional jobbers.

The “import” channel involves import warehouses and import jobbers; two-step import warehouses have experienced increased success due in part to the fast-growing foreign nameplate market, Jim Lang notes.

The OE channel (5 percent downturn) and specialized channel (3.4 percent downturn) each declined in product volume and share over the last decade.

Lang projects that significant shifts in light vehicle product share and volume will continue among the five major channels.

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