Time has about run out for signups for RV dealers or anyone else interested in attending the 14th MBA RV Rental School, a three-day session set this year for Feb. 25-27 at the Tuscany Suites & Casino in Las Vegas hosted by Scottsdale, Ariz.-based MBA Insurance.
MBA President Bert Alanko, a former board member of the Recreation Vehicle Dealers Association (RVDA) and the widely recognized dean of RV rentals throughout North America, says MBA’s rental school remains the only academic setting in North America entirely focused on the art and science of RV rentals.
“Yes, this is our 14th year, and, I mean, nobody else in the industry has ever done one,” Alanko told RVBUSINESS.com. “This is the only RV rental school in the industry. It’s the only one there ever has been. I mean at the RV Dealers International Convention/Expo we might put on a class, a little seminar, but this is a full three days, and, quite frankly, even though it’s three days, we have a hard time getting it all in.”
Perhaps because of the resurgent market, Alanko says its rental school — dealing with “everything it takes to run a rental business” from fleet acquisition to pricing issues to check-in and check-out procedures — was just about full by mid-week.
“We like to keep the school at a size that encourages class participation,” said Alanko. “We have had right at 100 previously and that is just too big a group. So, we shut it down at about 70. In fact, I was going to cut it off at about 60 this year, but then I got some people calling me wanting to join up. So, now we’re going to take it up to 70. And since we’ve had a great response to the school earlier than normal, we are closing in on that now. It’ll be sold out here probably this week.
“If we get about five more people, that will probably do it,” he added. “So we just sent out an e-mail telling people that if they’re coming, they better step up soon because we’re cutting it off.”
Among the instructors:
• Scott Krenek, of Krenek RV Supercenter Coloma, Mich., a noted RVDA Con/Expo guest speaker who in 1995 started the first international rental group.
• Martin Onken, of Expedition Motorhomes in Calabasas, Calif., another frequent RVDA Con/Expo speaker who has operated an RV rental business for 13 years and will focus on rental marketing and managed rental vehicles, formerly called “leasebacks.”
• Barry Raye, owner of 84 RV Rentals & Service and Rayewood RV Center, Sussex, N.J., who has an accounting degree and brings an insider’s acumen to the table after working for over 40 years in his family’s RV business.
• Leslie J. Pujo, a partner of the law firm LaPlaca Pujo P.C., Washington, D.C., who specializes in franchise law, with particular expertise in registration and disclosure matters as well as franchise relationship issues.