Nelson’s Bowater Toyota retained the Toyota Supreme Award at the hotly contested Toyota and Lexus Business Excellence Awards, held virtually on March 17th.
The Toyota Supreme Award is awarded for overall excellence in all aspects of Store operations, market leadership and branch facilities. There is strong competition each year for the Toyota Supreme Award among the 64 Toyota and Lexus Stores spread across the nation, from Whangarei to Invercargill.
After sharing the Toyota Supreme Award with South Canterbury Toyota in 2020, Bowater Toyota was singularly awarded the top award for its achievements in 2021 and they also won the President’s Trophy for outstanding customer service. Bowater is no stranger to winning at the Toyota and Lexus Business Excellence Awards, having won the then Toyota Dealer of the Year in 2014, 2015 and 2016.
Steve Prangnell, Toyota New Zealand’s General Manager of Franchise Development, says the awards celebrate the vital contribution of the Toyota Store network to the ongoing trust ofthe Toyota brand in New Zealand – something that was needed more than ever during the past year.
“To say that the business environment over the past 24 months has been challenging would be an understatement. With lockdowns, economic downturn and supply chain issues, 2021 presented our Stores with operating conditions they’ve never experienced before,” Mr Prangnell says.
“Despite this, the efforts and success of the Toyota Store network throughout the past year have been nothing short of amazing, with exceptional results across the board. Our New Vehicle Store network came together to deliver 30,200 vehicle sales, obtain a market share of 18.4% and ensure 34 years of continuous market leadership,” he says.
Tony Bowater, Chief Executive Officer of Bowater Toyota, is the third-generation owner of the Nelson business, which also has branches in Richmond and Motueka.
“The whole team at Bowater Toyota is delighted to take home not just the Toyota Supreme Award but the President’s Trophy too,” Tony says. “It really does recognise the hard work we all put in during the year and the commitment we have to provide the best service we can to our fantastic Toyota customers in the Nelson region.”
It was also a successful night for Ebbett Toyota in Hamilton and Rutherford & Bond Toyota in Wellington, who bothwon two awards each. Ebbett Toyota’s CEO,Tony Coutinho won the third
premier Excellence in Leadership award for outstanding leadership of a team as well as the Parts and Accessories Excellence Cup. Rutherford and Bond Toyota won the New Vehicle Excellence Cup and Branch of the Year for its Kapiti branch.
The fourth premier award of the night, the Lexus Supreme Award, was awarded to Lexus of Auckland City.
“Having clear awards criteria gives branches targets to aim for, and every year the competition seems to be more intense as our Stores aim for continuous improvement,” Mr Prangnell says. Other awards went to Manukau Toyota for the Toyota Financial Services Excellence Cup, Manawatu Toyota for the Used Vehicle Excellence Cup, and South Canterbury Toyota for the Service Excellence Cup.