Don Owens, Dothan Powersports: Mind your inventories

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Store shot, Dothan Powersports.

Don Owens, owner of Dothan Powersports in Dothan, Ala., reflects back on 2010.

“We made most of our changes necessary to weather the downturn last year. We will not be doing many things differently in 2011. We believe that 2011 will be very similar to 2010 and don’t look for any significant growth. We will continue to be cautiously optimistic.

“Naturally with the decrease in total sales our bottom line’s net profit margin is smaller than normal. I can thankfully say that even though our margin is down, we are still in the black. This year we have looked at each expense line and reviewed how we can improve it. We have been able to improve our expenses in a number of areas. We have cut back on travel expense for out-of-town training. We have been extremely mindful of all of our inventories, and we have ordered only what we think we can sell. We have not let the OEMs dictate our order levels. We have cut back on hours for certain employees and have even reduced salaries in most key management positions.

“Our traffic count has been down most of the year, and we are finding that credit scores of many potential customers are low, which makes it difficult to get them bought. We still depend on the help of secondary lenders for this segment. We still feel that consumers’ confidence is not strong enough to convince them to make many large purchases at this time.

“We will do what we have to do to weather the storm, and we will be ready when it passes!”

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