AAPEX Education Online

Monthly Webinars for All Automotive Aftermarket Pros

AAPEX Takes a Deep Dive into Business Strategy

Back by popular demand, AAPEX presents its FREE webinar series, covering critical topics impacting the entire global automotive aftermarket. Get strategic insights to give your business a competitive edge in 2023 and beyond. Join us for the following sessions.

Interested in submitting a proposal for a topic? Click here.


Tuesday, September 26, 10-11 a.m. CST

Reducing Risk & Cost in the Global Supply Chain: Top 5 Strategies


This discussion explores and explains methods that companies can use to manage the costs of global trade. The focus includes alternative sourcing, drawback, Foreign Trade Zones, tariff engineering, tariff classification reviews, freight options, freight consolidation, choosing the best Incoterm, and robust demand planning. We teach a “landed costs” approach to managing cost and risk: assessing and analyzing all costs related to the supply chain, from acquisition, freight, customs clearance, duties and taxes, to inland freight, warehousing, and distribution. Using a customer-driven case study, we’ll conduct a deep dive on the cost, benefit, and how-to’s of implementing a Foreign Trade Zone to defer, reduce, or eliminate duty paid.

Actionable takeaways to help you reduce risk and cost in your supply chain:

  • how to understand and work your landed costs
  • how to identify and mitigate risk
  • whether nearsourcing is the right import strategy
  • controlling your export freight
  • how to better negotiate


Name: Thomas Cook

Title: Managing Director

Company: Blue Tiger International

Thomas Cook is Managing Director of Blue Tiger International (bluetigerintl.com), an international business consulting company on supply chain management, trade compliance, purchasing, trade and disruption management, global business and logistics. Tom was former CEO of American River International in NY and Apex Global Logistics Supply Chain Operation in LA.

Tom has over 35 years’ experience in assisting companies all over the world manage their import and export operations. He serves on the Board of Directors of the National Association of District Export Councils (NADEC), is a member of the NY District Export Council, sits on the board of numerous corporations and is considered a leader in the business verticals he supports.

Tom is also the Director of the National Institute of World Trade (niwt.org) a 30-year-old educational and training organization, based in NY. Both Blue Tiger International and the National Institute of World Trade are strategic partners of the Department of Commerce.

Tom has authored over 20 books on global trade and is finalizing a nine-book series titled “The Global Warrior: Advancing on the Necessary Skill Sets to Compete Effectively in Global Trade.”


Tuesday, October 17, 10-11 A.M. CST

Sustainability in the Aftermarket


In this webinar, attendees will review some of the latest developments regarding sustainability in the aftermarket and specifically how they may impact the repair shop business. Prepare to see what the industry as a whole is doing and where things are headed in terms of regulations, best practices, industry initiatives, and income-saving and generating opportunities.

Attendees will:

  • Become familiar with top Sustainability issues
  • Gain an understanding of current regulations and how they may impact your business
  • Learn about the latest best practices and opportunities around Sustainability


Name: Ben Spitz

Title: VP of Strategy and Sustainability

Company: Parts Authority

Ben is the third generation of his family in the automotive aftermarket. He started his career pulling parts in Parts Authority’s Store 1 and then went on to work in a variety of functions within Parts Authority including sales, collections, operations, training, marketing and IT. He took a 20-year leave of absence to work as a Nuclear Engineer for Raytheon’s Advanced Technology Group, working on nuclear reactors, including core and shielding design, often by dialing into Cray supercomputers to perform Monte Carlo simulations and algorithm development, among other energy and defense projects. From there he went on to a number of technology and management roles in Israel’s hi-tech startup scene serving a variety of Fortune 500 companies, including as the CEO of an Intel-backed nanotechnology company.

Ben has been the project manager for some major international technology projects, including leading an online trading consortium of the world’s biggest oil producers, including Saudi Aramco, Exxon, and others, as well as scoping the construction of a 200MW, $300M wind farm in South America. Now, back in Parts Authority since 2017, Ben explores future directions and strategies for the company, with a special focus on new technologies. Ben is currently a member of the Auto Care Association’s Emerging Technologies Committee, as well as a board member of Entricit, a telematics (connected vehicles) gateway company.

In parallel to his Aftermarket and Strategy activities, Ben has a long history in Sustainability. He studied Environmental Engineering at Columbia University, worked on a number of alternative energy projects and investments, including solar, wind, geothermal and wave energy, was involved in early discussions of the United Nations’ Carbon Offset Platform, advised on investments in sustainable fishing and waste recycling technologies, worked on facility energy efficiencies as a Certified Energy Manager of the Association of Energy Engineers, promoted labor, human rights, transparent governance, and environmental policies during his brief stint as an Israeli politician, and currently heads Parts Authority’s ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) program and is the founding Chair of the Auto Care Association’s Sustainability Committee.

Ben has a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University and a BA in Engineering from Yeshiva University.


Tuesday, June 27, 10-11 a.m. CST

How Generative AI is Powering Innovation in Automotive Repair.

Overview: The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is accelerating across the automotive aftermarket ecosystem. Generative AI is on the rise. Meanwhile our industry is constantly striving to optimize our customers’ service experience – all while navigating a highly complex, highly competitive ecosystem. In addition, as connected car data becomes more accessible, the need to make it actionable is critical.

Learn how AI has evolved in recent years and months and how it can leverage the automotive aftermarket’s biggest asset – a vast amount of data – to predict parts & service demand, optimize supply chains, and power product innovation.

Attendees will learn:

  • What exactly is “Artificial Intelligence,” and how does it differ from basic analytics and business intelligence (BI)?
  • How do specialized AI solutions add value to the automotive repair experience today? How can you leverage these solutions to stay competitive?
  • What is “Generative AI” and what are “Large Language Models”? How can they be applied to your business?
  • How will AI help the aftermarket with some of its key challenges into the future?


mark seng

Name: Mark Seng 

Title: Vice President, Sales & Business Development

Company: Predii

Email: mark@predii.com

Bio: Mark Seng is Vice President, Sales & Business Development, at Predii – a Palo Alto, CA-based automotive-focused Artificial Intelligence provider to both OEM’s and Aftermarket companies.

Seng began his career in 1984 and has over 35 years’ experience in the global aftermarket business. Before Predii, Seng was the Global Aftermarket Practice Leader for IHS Markit – leading the company’s global aftermarket product development strategy, and Vice President of Aftermarket & Commercial Vehicle Sales for R.L Polk & Co. Prior to that, he held various positions in distribution, sales, international marketing, and product management for Federal-Mogul. He has earned the Master Automotive Aftermarket Professional designation from Northwood University, served on the Auto Care Association’s Technology Committee, was president of the Automotive Content Professionals Network, and served as a member of the Global Automotive Aftermarket Symposium Program Committee.

tilak katsuri

Name: Tilak Kasturi

Title: Founder and CEO

Company: Predii

Email: tilak@predii.com

Bio: Tilak Kasturi is an innovator, entrepreneur and an engineer with over 20 years of enterprise software, enterprise big data and applied artificial intelligence experience. He stands at the forefront of predictive big data, driving one of the most impactful developments in the automotive and industrial sectors. Prior to Predii, he has held several technology leadership roles at Radion (a cancer treatment management software), iLoop Mobile (Mobile platform), eVolution Global Partners (a Corporate VCfund) and Time Warner.


Tuesday, July 25, 10-11 a.m. CST

Companies and the Culture Wars: How, or Whether, to Engage in Political and Social Discourse.

Overview: The Black Lives Matter movement, a global pandemic, a fragile economy, and increasingly divisive social issues have led companies to consider how, or whether, to engage in political and social discourse. Frequently, companies incite employee discontent or lose customer & industry loyalty because there are no playbooks or algorithms to determine what to do. In this webinar, participants will learn and discuss:

  • A company’s cost of circumventing or not engaging in key social and political issues (weaponized ignorance)
  • The development of internal resources for information on key topics
  • Navigating employees’ and customers’ views in the short term
  • A long-term strategy for social/political crisis management, education, and collaboration


Jessica Hinman

Name: Jessica Hinman 

Title: CSR and DEI Leader

Bio: Jessica has over ten years’ experience in corporate social responsibility, equity, and social justice, as well as strategic government and nonprofit engagement. Her core value is to ‘lead with purpose’, and she aspires to improve society, humanity, and the environment, something that no one entity can accomplish on its own. In order to achieve lasting change, government institutions, nonprofits, public organizations, and for-profit businesses must focus on equity, education, and collaboration.

Most recently, Jessica was the AVP of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) at FCP Euro, where she directed the vision, mission, planning, and execution of FCP Euro’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives through their people, community, and environment. Formerly, Jessica led Global Corporate Social Responsibility for Pratt & Whitney, where her position involved working with key partners and executive leadership across Pratt & Whitney and Raytheon Technologies (RTX) business units and functions to ensure alignment and coordination of all internal and external communication programs with a focus on creating a strong CSR identity and sustainable shared value.

Prior to her role with Pratt & Whitney, Jessica has a successful record of community engagement and marketing strategy for a Hartford, CT-based nonprofit– where she cultivated business relationships with corporate, foundation, and government supporters through sponsorships, employee engagement, and donations.

Jessica holds a BA in International Communication, a Master’s Degree in Public Administration, graduate certificates in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Nonprofit Management, and a Mental Health First Aid certification. She is a member of the Nu Lambda Mu International Honor Society and Pi Pi Alpha Honor Society and an awardee of the Hartford Business Journal “40 under Forty” award.

Outside of her professional role, Jessica is an Advisory Board Member for USO New England, a Hire Heroes volunteer, and a martial arts instructor and competitor.