More to Explore at the 2024 Southeast Collision Conference

by Chasidy Rae Sisk

WMABA members deserve more…and that’s exactly what the association has in store during the 2024 Southeast Collision Conference (SCC), taking place May 16-18, 2024 at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex in Greensboro, NC.

Co-hosted by WMABA and the Carolinas Collision Association (CCA), the third iteration of this regional event promises to deliver more than ever before – more training, more exhibitors, more hands-on experiences and more excitement!

In addition to a full slate of educational offerings through WMABA’s Collision P.R.E.P. (Professional Repairer Education Program) that will engage repairers at every level in the shop (see page 16 or visit for more details), attendees can also anticipate plenty of learning opportunities on the trade show floor with dozens of local and national vendors participating to showcase the latest tools, products, equipment and services on the market to the shop owners, technicians, painters, estimators, suppliers and other industry professionals in attendance. 

This year’s venue boasts more exhibition space than the 2023 trade show, allowing for more vendors but also giving vendors the opportunity to secure larger spaces and host even more demonstrations on the floor.

“Besides bringing the best possible education to our region yet again, our main focus is on providing attendees with more interactive and hands-on experiences,” WMABA Executive Director Jordan Hendler promises. “It’s going to be even bigger and more exciting.”

Exhibitors are anticipating a great show.

“We’re excited about the networking opportunities within the collision industry at this conference,” shares Thaddeous Green of Platinum Sponsor BASF. “We aim to promote our latest automotive coatings technology and show why BASF has the best products and services for collision repair businesses.”

BASF will also be highlighting and celebrating 65 years of “petty blue” in collaboration with Richard Petty’s race team, so attendees will definitely want to check out what they’ve got featured at the booth.

“The Southeast Collision Conference provides us with an opportunity to connect with industry professionals who share our passion for auto collision repair,” offers Benjamin Staton of Gold Sponsor KECO Body Repair Products. “We are eager to showcase our latest products and demonstrate how GPR (glue pull repair) is revolutionizing the industry for the better.”

Attendees stopping by KECO’s booth can anticipate seeing “live GPR demos to showcase the capabilities of our collision systems and tools,” Staton predicts. “We are introducing several new products, including the K-Power Lateral Tension Tool, KECO Knockdown Strikers and Hemi Tabs. These products allow you to delve deeper into GPR and enhance repairability. At the heart of our offerings will always be the L2E System, which includes all the tools and tabs necessary for efficient and complete repairs. We are thrilled to be a part of the Southeast Collision Conference and look forward to seeing everyone there!”

Mike DeWitt of Gold Sponsor Colors Edge is also certain it’s going to be a great show, especially since it’s going to be held in such a great location. “We’re a PPG Platinum distributor with 13 locations that originally started in Greensboro, so it’s really exciting to see this growing event being held in our own backyard, right by our homebase. SCC has been growing every year since its inception, and we’re looking forward to seeing how it continues to grow now that WMABA and CCA have partnered to attract even more collision business owners to the conference.”

Colors Edge has secured a 400-square-foot booth with some special features in store for the company’s 20th anniversary. “We’ve got some new product introductions, specials and some announcements about how we’re going to celebrate our 20th year in business. We’ve got some really exciting stuff planned, but if you want to know more, you’re going to have to visit our booth!” DeWitt teases. Although he prefers not to share the details ahead of time, he promises “a WOW factor that I’m confident attendees will enjoy.”

Dale Huckabee of Silver Sponsor Alloy Wheel Repair Specialists also has a surprise in store for attendees via a special edition rubber ducky, available only at SCC 2024. “We like to have a little fun as we engage and participate,” he explains. “Attendees will have to stop by our booth to grab one of the exclusive ducks we’re having made for the show before they run out!”

A first-time exhibitor at the SCC, Alloy Wheel Repair Specialists is looking to engage more with the industry. “When we began attending various industry events around the country last year, it was apparent that we had been missing a lot of networking opportunities, including the untapped potential to work with associations, like WMABA and CCA,” Huckabee notes. “SCC offers an opportunity to expand both of those initiatives and is also a great place for us to bring in our regional teams to meet with local customers. Relationships are key, so we’re excited to mix and mingle with the regional presence at the show!”

“We’re really excited to connect with shop owners and talk about how early detection of bent components can speed up their process, reduce cycle time and get the car repaired quickly,” contributes Steve Dawson of Silver Sponsor Hunter Engineering. “We anticipate performing live demos of Ultimate ADAS, our new OEM-approved equipment, and of course, we’re looking forward to connecting with old and new friends within the industry.”

While vendors are excited by the opportunity to educate attendees on their products, many expressed eagerness to learn something new themselves and gain further awareness of the issues their customers are facing in today’s marketplace.

“We hope to learn something new while visiting other booths and educational classes,” Green notes.

“We’re also hoping to benefit from the educational aspect of SCC,” Huckabee agrees. “Although we’re a vendor, we undergo a lot of the same struggles that body shops encounter, and we want to learn more about their challenges so we can determine where we fit in their timeline and do what we can to expedite things.”

“I love attending educational seminars to see what new and different information can be taken away and sometimes just reinforce what we already know,” insists Keith Manich of Silver Sponsor Automotive Training Institute, who will be presenting “Increased Profitability Through Proper Documentation: How Communication, Documentation and Collision Shop Positioning Must Change in 2024 and Beyond” on Saturday afternoon. He adds, “SCC is one of my favorite events, annually!”

So much has been planned for the show with plenty of exhibitor booths to visit, raffle prizes to be won and floor demos to witness, but you never know what else might happen when you get some of the industry’s best and brightest minds together (like last year’s impromptu dent-pulling demo at KECO’s booth), so you won’t want to miss a single minute!

The fun actually begins Thursday, May 16 with a kickoff reception and awards ceremony to honor those who go above and beyond when it comes to honesty, integrity and dedication to safe and proper repairs. 

“Our industry doesn’t have a true hall of fame, so this is the only way people of excellence will get recognized,” Hendler says. 

CCA Executive Director Josh Kent agrees, “For us, it is very important that we recognize the men and women who put their heart and soul into this industry.” 

There’s plenty more to be excited about on the show floor and in the classrooms, but you have to be there to reap the benefits that are available! 

“CCA and WMABA have put together a great and memorable experience for all the collision repairers who take the time to come and invest in themselves, their teams and the future of their businesses,” Hendler promises.

Register for SCC at

Want more? Check out the May 2024 issue of Hammer & Dolly!