O'Neill has remade Reynolds to be more in tune with dealers' needs, say company officials. But talk is easy — executing is another story. So far, the quiet, yet feisty O'Neill seems to be doing fine and he has a strong track record with turning around. This has to be easier, right?
He is smiling after much-needed wins with the Saturn contract and “preferred” status for GM's IDMS strategy. At least, he hopes they are wins. Reynolds has been down this path before — anyone remember 2000? And the company will have to maintain a balancing act worthy of an Olympic gold medal to serve the needs of both GM and its dealers. But O'Neill knows how to play the OEM game, sobetter not hold its breath waiting for a stumble.
And for those who say Reynolds bought those deals, we beg to differ — we've seen the initial pricing and it looks good.
Meanwhile, Reynolds' new data extraction strategy and changes to its certification requirements has third-party vendors fomenting a rebellion. It will be interesting to see if dealers go along.
Despite the questions, any doubts that Reynolds will continue to rule DMS market with, just look at the more than $70 million write off incurred without a blip for killing RGS. The giants have the money and time to protect their flanks.