The resounding successes of the iPhone and iPad have Apple shareholders dancing in the streets, but one area in which Apple hasn't been as successful, however, has been business applications. In fact, until recently, Apple retail stores used Windows-based devices to ring up orders. Now, Mercedes-Benz aims to be among the first companies to change that paradigm by bringing the popular iPad tablet into its showrooms.
General Motors Canada has announced that it has begun notifying its dealer body that it will be culling its sales networks by some 42 percent. The massive cut means that GM's 709 dealers will be trimmed by around 245 stores. The cuts will come as the restructuring automaker will elect to not renew its sales and service contracts come October 2010.
Like those affected by the overinflated housing market, many auto dealers are experiencing a similar situation with their real estate. During the recent boom times, the thinking was that you needed a big, flashy facility with all sorts of extras and perks to attract customers. Manufacturers helped push the trend by offering extra incentives to dealers for interior and exterior upgrades, or flat-out demanding that some brand outlets conform to a particular standard.