Friday, September 18, 2020

BY SUSAN ROSE

When the Chauffeur Driven Show blew into Atlantic City this past November, even CD staff were astounded by the positive vibe and kinetic energy happening at the Trump Taj Mahal. As the youngest contender amongst the East Coast shows, it was Chauffeur Driven’s goal to pull out all the stops to bring attendees the finest quality education, networking, entertainment, vehicles, and services. By all accounts, this was the fresh air that the industry craved. Many thanks to our Title Sponsor, The Lincoln Motor Company (see a full list of our sponsors at www.chauffeurdrivenshow.com).

cd-1213-show-review-ribbon-chris-eric-ford As our first show, this was the opportunity to mix it up, test the waters, and really challenge ourselves to think differently about the needs of the industry—now and moving forward. We knew there were some essentials that we had to have: all under one roof for less time spent traveling between venues and more time learning and networking. We knew it had to have all the best speakers and the most relevant topics. It had to include some downtime, but also lots of opportunities to let loose and have some fun. Four days, nearly 100 exhibitors, 50+ sponsors, and over 1,500 attendees later, the show was a smashing success and the clear choice of the chauffeured ground transportation industry. Thank you to our incredible attendees!

“Congratulations on a great show. I think you surprised a lot of the naysayers who thought you couldn’t pull off a successful show that size on your own. Not only did you do it, you excelled at it. I wish you nothing but continued success in the years to come and bigger and more awesome shows,” says David Brown of Premiere Transportation Group in Albany, N.Y.

BY PHIL COLE

Rental Limo L to R: Brian Gaputis, Ryan Hilberth, and Keith Gaputis

You know there’s an industry-wide revolution going on when you see young, tech-savvy entrepreneurs like Ryan Hilberth ­running to the scene. Founder and CEO of the new online reservation service, Rental Limo ­(rentalimo.com), Hilberth sees the growing technological momentum in the chauffeured transportation industry and thinks it’s only just begun.

In his younger years, Hilberth was enchanted with the limousine experience he got when his father’s friend would send him on occasional chauffeured transportation rides to places like McDonald’s or Blockbuster. Years later, Hilberth held onto those memories as he did client work with search engine optimization and marketing products and services—slowly putting together an idea that he’d eventually share with his longtime friend and Rental Limo co-founder, Keith Gaputis, who had a strong background in web development and programming.

The two teamed up in 2010 and began building Rental Limo from the ground up, with Gaputis working on developing the website and Hilberth on advertising and attracting clients. By 2013, the product was ready. Right before its launch, Gaputis’ brother Brian joined the team as executive account director and eventually as a partner, helping transportation companies get set up on the website.

Premiere Transportation Group capitalizes on its eclectic market through solid leadership and diversification.

Can you think back to 1986 and recall the job you had at the time?If you can, chances are that it didn’t really turn into a career. It was something to get your parents off your back while you tried to figure out what you wanted to be when you grew up. But for David Brown, president and owner of Premiere Transportation Group, a part-time job at a mom-and-pop limousine company turned into a lucrative, lifelong career.

Premiere Profile The Davids: David Ericsen (left) and David Brown At his mother’s urging, a then-20-year-old Brown applied to be a chauffeur at nearly every limousine company in the Albany, N.Y., area. He was turned down by all of them, except one. “Nobody would hire me,” says Brown. “But I got a call back from a company that said they’d hire me, but not as a chauffeur. They needed someone to wash cars and take reservations.”

It became more than a summer job. For 4 years—during college breaks—Brown worked in just about every area of the company, from reservations and dispatch to detailer and chauffeur. After graduating from college, Brown had an obligation to the Army, and after fulfilling his duty, he returned to the limousine company—Carey of Albany—in a management capacity. Just a few months later in 1990, Brown bought the company; brought on his business partner, Denise Crisafulli; and got to work. They changed the name to Premiere Limousine a few years later.

2015 Escalade resized2015 Cadillac EscaladeNew York--Cadillac introduced the all-new 2015 Escalade, the fourth generation of Cadillac's flagship SUV, this October in New York City.

“Cadillac’s growth provides the ideal stage for the all-new Escalade to take a major leap forward,” said Bob Ferguson, senior vice president, Global Cadillac. “The 2015 Escalade is completely new and elevated in design and technology, inside and out. The clear objective is to once again assume the leadership position among luxury SUVs.”

Production of the 2015 Escalade begins next spring in Arlington, Texas. The product line will consist of the standard Escalade model, as well as the extended-length ESV edition, with offers a 14-inch-longer wheelbase and approximately 20 inches more in overall length, maximizing space for third-row passengers and 60 percent more cargo space behind the third-row seat than the Escalade. Offered with 2WD and 4WD drivetrains, Escalade features a new 6.2L V-8 engine that is more powerful and more efficient than previous models. Cadillac’s Magnetic Ride Control, the world’s fastest-reacting suspension system, is now standard and delivers precisely controlled driving performance.