FTC to Host Public Workshop Examining the U.S. Auto Distribution System Workshop Will Explore Competition, State Regulations, and Emerging Trends in the Industry, Project No. P131202
I am for the ability of car manufacturers to sell cars and service directly to their customers and I encourage the FTC to assure that such ability is not impeded. In a free market economy protecting the interests of the customer is paramount, but so is of the innovator, manufacturer, and entrepreneur. Restricting their ability to conduct business is counter to the foundation of our system. An important regulatory role for our government is to monitor and reduce such restrictions. The automobile is symbol of individual freedom and a cornerstone of our economy. If the consumers want to buy their car or truck directly from manufacturers who in turn are willing to sell directly then they should be able to do so. As seen in many other examples direct sales of products and services and sales through an intermediary do coexist. In the automotive space they exist in other countries as well. Those intermediaries can provide value to the customers that manufacturers are not able to and vice versa, they can reduce the value and increase the transaction cost. Examples of direct and via intermediary sales of goods and services are ubiquitous and include food and textile, computers and electronics, information and telecommunication services, travel services, media and entertainment, medical equipment and supplies, housing, kitchen appliances, lawn care machines, etc, etc. As long as the sale of goods and services is legal and follows regulations, every participant in our economy should be able to transact directly. Another aspect is innovation and the importance of it reaching people and gain acceptance and support in order to sustain and hopefully grow. As its pace accelerates so should the pace of it reaching the intended users. Intermediaries may help further this goal by facilitating the distribution and user interaction, but they can also hinder innovation if it competes with established interests that sustain the intermediaries. Thanks for your attention and for your support!