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From Disruption to Dollars

First Annual Auto Dealer Growth Strategy Retreat

Leisure & Learning Converge in a Peaceful, Productive Setting

Taking place at the luxurious ICONA Diamond Beach resort in New Jersey, this event features all-inclusive amenities, presentations from industry innovators, and immersive instructional workshops.

To advance in the industry, dealers, investors, owners, and managers require the latest insights to guide business decisions. Event attendees will receive these crucial insights in a relaxed resort setting, uninfluenced by commercial sponsors to ensure information is unbiased and neutral. We will help you create practical opportunities for increased profit from current disruptive issues such as:

  • The future of automotive retail
  • Defending dealer franchise rights
  • Used car opportunities in 2023
  • Selling on social media and the metaverse
  • Customer retention
  • Increasing the value of dealership real estate

Join Us and Unlock the Secrets to Auto Dealer Success

This exclusive conference is the first of its kind and features industry experts delivering actual solutions to the six major disruptions facing automobile auto dealers backed up with first-hand detailed analysis of market trends. In addition to a balanced and respectful point-of-view, the retreat offers:

Advice from industry pioneers

All-inclusive resort experience


Detailed 12-month strategy preparation

Hands-on workshops alongside experts

Deluxe meals and cocktail hours


Room upgrades and premium add-ons

Featuring Influential Automotive Industry Leaders

Explore Various Packages & Add-Ons


From just $2495* per person for Classic or Signature Suites


  • Wednesday – Friday Admission to the Retreat 
  • 2-Night Accommodations in a Suite at ICONA Diamond Beach 
  • Wednesday: Welcome Cocktail Reception, Dinner, After Dinner Mixer with Drinks & Music 
  • Thursday: Breakfast, Speakers & Strategy Workshop, Lunch, Cocktail Reception, Dinner, After Dinner Mixer with Drinks & Music 
  • Friday: Breakfast, Speakers & Strategy Workshop, Farewell Lunch 


Upgraded Rooms for +$25-$100/night*

To further elevate their experience, guests are welcome to upgrade from the Classic/Signature room package to a Premium suite.

Guests may also extend their stay through the weekend from just $209++ per night. Once you have booked your conference package, simply call ICONA Diamond Beach at (609) 729-6600 to extend your stay.

Optional Add-On 1

Digital Recording for $299*

Receive a full-length digital recording of the 7 keynote speakers shortly after the event’s closing to share with employees, business partners, and investors.

Optional Add-On 2

Plus-One Guest for $149*

Partners or spouses are welcome to join guests at the retreat for two cocktail hours, two dinners, and two post-dinner events for an additional cost.

*Taxes and fees not included

Browse the Event Itinerary

Frequently Asked Questions

Can anyone attend the Auto Dealer Strategy Conference or just GMs?

This automotive retreat will be beneficial to many roles within the dealership, especially dealer investors, dealer principal, managing directors, general managers, and sales, service, used car, and F&I managers.

I’m local, can I attend and not stay overnight?

Yes, without the hotel suite accommodations, you may attend for the early bird price of $1495 when booked by 2/20 or $1995. To reserve, please call: (609) 729-6600.

I am vegan, vegetarian, or have a food allergy, can you accommodate me?

Yes, please be certain to include information about your allergy or requirement in the “Special Request” box prior to check-out online or ask the reservations agent to include the information in the notes section of your reservation.

Can I bring my significant other?

Yes, for just $149 + fees & taxes ($180 including gratuity + tax) you may bring a +1 to enjoy the property & surrounding area. They can join the Retreat attendee for two cocktail hours, two dinners, and two after-dinner mixers.


Diamond Beach is a beautiful beachfront hotel located in southern NJ there are many things to do and see in the area including nature preserves, breweries, wineries, and beautiful Victorian Cape May. The ICONA shuttle will be available daily to offer rides to Cape May and back. Learn more about things to do in the area here:


Of course! ICONA Diamond Beach is offering Auto Retreat guests a special discounted rate through the weekend, starting from just $209++ per night. Simply call (609) 729-6600 and the reservations team will be happy to assist with extending your stay.

Location Information

Driving directions from Philly: Take I-676/US 30 E toward New Jersey to I-76. Continue on I-76 onto NJ-42 S. Follow NJ-42 S, keep left at the fork toward Atlantic City Expressway. Stay on Atlantic City Expressway to exit 7-S – Pleasantville/Northfield/Linwood/Somers Point. Keep left, following signs for Cape May and merging onto Garden State Parkway. Turn left on Ocean Dr. Continue on Ocean Dr. to Pacific Ave. Turn right on E Rochester Ave. Turn right onto Atlantic Ave. Turn left on Memphis Ave, destination will be on the left.

Driving directions from NYC: Take I-78 W/Holland Tunnel to I-95 S/NJ Turnpike S toward Trenton. Take exit 11 for Garden State Parkway and continue on Garden State Parkway. Keep left at the fork to stay on Garden State Pkwy, follow signs for 117, 105/Asbury Park/S Jersey. Continue onto US-9 S/Garden State Pkwy. Keep left to continue on NJ-109 S. Turn left onto Ocean Dr. Continue on Ocean Dr. to Pacific Ave. Turn right on E Rochester Ave. Turn right onto Atlantic Ave. Turn left on Memphis Ave, destination will be on the left.

Driving directions from Atlantic City: Take Atlantic City Expressway W to exit 7-S toward Garden State Parkway S in Lower Township. Take Garden State Parkway to NJ-109 S. Turn left onto Ocean Dr. Continue on Ocean Dr. to Pacific Ave. Turn right on E Rochester Ave. Turn right onto Atlantic Ave. Turn left on Memphis Ave, destination will be on the left.

ICONA Diamond Beach

9701 Atlantic Ave. Diamond Beach, NJ 08260


The debut of From Disruption to Dollars allows modern auto dealers unhindered access to the latest solutions in order to address major disruptions facing their businesses. The luxurious ICONA Diamond Beach resort hosts the first growth strategy retreat intended exclusively for professionals in the automotive dealership industry. Book a reservation today!

Hosted By

ICONA Diamond Beach

9701 Atlantic Ave.

Wildwood Crest, NJ 08260

Contact Us

Steve Greenfield

Steve Greenfield is CEO and Founder of Automotive Ventures, an early-stage automotive technology and mobility VC fund that helps entrepreneurs raise growth capital, accelerate their businesses, and deliver outsized returns to investors in the fund.

Steve served as TrueCar’s Senior Vice President of Strategy and Business Development and’s Vice President of Product Management and Business Development, overseeing the acquisitions of vAuto, Kelley Blue Book, HomeNet Automotive, VinSolutions, and DealerScience.

Earlier in his career, Steve served as Manheim’s Director of International Development, overseeing Manheim’s overseas investments, including establishing new joint ventures in Dubai, Istanbul, and Beijing. 

“The future of mobility is evolving at an accelerating pace. This is most evident in the automotive retail channel, as both car dealers and automakers are experiencing an enhanced level of change. The Future of Automotive Retail will provide dealers with a framework for how these changes are impacting their business, and a list of practical steps they can take to prepare for this dynamic future.” 

Brian Kramer

Kramer’s prior experience includes multi-dealership General Manager specializing in digital transformation with 26+ years of retail dealership experience. He became a dealership General Manager at the age of 24. Kramer possesses operating experience for Autonation and the Germain Automotive Group, and for franchises including Mercedes-Benz, Lexus, Infiniti, Chevrolet, Cadillac, Toyota, and Lincoln in Ohio and Florida. Other commendations include:

  • Recipient of the inaugural Automotive News “Top 40 under 40” award.  
  • Member of the Google Dealer Advisory Board.
  • Led initiative that resulted in the first 100% paperless transaction in 2020.  
  • Pioneered and delivered the first automotive transaction in the Metaverse.  
  • Recently featured in Automotive News, F&I Magazine, Digital Dealer Magazine, Jalopnik, The Wall Street Journal, as well on the PBS documentary Viewpoint with Dennis Quaid.

Todd Caputo

Todd Caputo began his full-time career in automotive retail/wholesale as the General Manager of Sun Chevrolet in 1994, which he later acquired from his Father in 2012.

During his career, Todd built a strong leadership team and grew the family’s business exponentially. As he grew the Chevrolet business and market share, he acquired three former new car dealerships, converting them into high-volume standalone, independent used car dealerships with showrooms and fixed operations departments. Branding himself as “The Used Car King,” he continued to increase market share and achieved annual revenues of $200 million dollars between his four locations.

At the end of 2020, Todd’s three Used Car King dealerships were acquired by EchoPark, a Sonic Automotive Company. Sonic Automotive also acquired his new car dealership, Sun Chevrolet. Todd joined the leadership team as the Director of Delivery Center Operations for EchoPark Automotive until May 2022. 

Todd is an expert in automotive retail, wholesale variable operations, and in-dealership fixed operations. He specializes in used vehicle inventory acquisition, used vehicle reconditioning, new and used vehicle e-commerce, digital and traditional marketing, brand building, organizational development, and team building. Todd graduated from Le Moyne College with a B.S. in Human Resource Management and is a graduate of the General Motors Dealer Academy. 

Todd is also an investor in several automotive-related venture capital funds. He has participated in numerous beta testing and development projects for automotive industry software with Cox Automotive, ACV Auctions, Dealer Inspire, Roadster, and Ally Smart Auction. 

Peyton "Teddy" Stephens

“Renewing Your Best Customer: Your Existing Customer Base Whether Lease, Cash, Conventional, or Service.”

Teddy grew up with a love and passion for cars, and rose quickly through the ranks of the dealerships until he owned a Ford Dealership in California. 

Before owning his Ford Dealership, Teddy became a Full Time Consultant at Half a Car (HAC), the inventor and innovator of Personal Leasing. With HAC, Teddy traveled the world and became the Director of Consultants worldwide.   

Now, Teddy teaches dealers across the USA how to unlock profit opportunities from existing leases and conventional finance. Teddy demonstrates that recent market disruptions will be followed by fresh opportunities to create new processes within a culture of customer-focused renewals. He helps you plan for a 5-year 40% increase in new car volume, and set up your dealership so that, whatever the economic forecasts may be, the point of sale becomes the point of resale.

Teddy has worked in all dealer departments before becoming a General Manager and then a Dealer Principal. 

Linda T. Nguyen

Linda T. Nguyen is Principal of Elletienne Property Partners [pronounced L-T-N], a boutique firm that works with publicly traded & private dealer groups on real estate strategies, to maximize their portfolios and combat industry headwinds.   
Linda works as a strategic partner to CEO/CFO/Dealer Principals in executing Corporate Initiatives, Alternative Investments, Acquisitions, and International Expansion. In particular, she thrives in navigating the complexities of Automotive Mixed-Use Development and is passionate about building a more resilient future for our industry.
By reimagining how dealership land is traditionally used, Linda helps dealers navigate the development world – in ways that increase their real estate values, create additional revenue streams, drive foot traffic, create housing options to attract and retain the best talent, bring financial innovations such as tax credits into the equation, and protect against the agency model.
Previously, Linda served as Automotive Financial & Litigation Consultant for PricewaterhouseCoopers. Thereafter, she was Vice President & Portfolio Manager at Capital Automotive REIT, where she secured a massive rezoning/entitlement of 20 acres of dealership property, for a 4.5 million SF mixed-use development play with 12 high rises, for Brookfield Property Partners. 

Leonard A. Bellavia, Esq.

“Defending Dealer Rights and Blue-Sky vis a vis Evolving Dealer Franchise Laws”

Founding partner of the law firm of Bellavia Blatt, PC, Leonard A. Bellavia, Esq., is a nationally recognized authority in the field of automotive franchise law. Mr. Bellavia spent his life in the automobile business, as his family once owned one of the largest dealer groups in the New York area. 

Mr. Bellavia represents thousands of automobile dealerships across the country in all aspects of commercial litigation and buy-sell transactions, and has been instrumental in negotiating the sales of hundreds of dealerships. He has achieved national recognition for advocating the mass action litigation model on behalf of franchised automobile dealers.

A regularly-quoted source of comment for Automotive News and Auto Dealer Monthly, Mr. Bellavia is a regular speaker for national automotive and marine-related trade organizations. He serves as Chair of the Automotive Franchise Law Section of the Franchise Law Committee of the New York State Bar Association and is the former Chairperson of the Litigation Section of the National Association of Dealer Counsel (NADC) and was a member of its Board of Directors. 

Mr. Bellavia has been endorsed by the Marine Retailers Association of America (MRAA) and the National PowerSports Association as its recommended franchise counsel to over 5,000 dealers nationwide.  

Mark Strand

Mark Strand is Senior Director of Economic Industry Insights for Cox Automotive, a subsidiary of Atlanta-based Cox Enterprises. Cox Automotive includes Manheim North America and consumer-facing media properties Autotrader and Kelley Blue Book, as well as a suite of companies that provide software tools to help dealers and manufacturers manage their inventory and advertising online.

In his role with Economic & Industry Insights/Research & Market Intelligence, Mark is responsible for tracking market trends that drive the shifts in the automotive industry and analyzing such trends to produce industry forecasts. Mark keeps an eye on the pulse of the automotive industry in all aspects, from economics and finance impacting vehicle demand to consumer trends impacting the way we shop for, buy, and own vehicles. 

Mark has seen the industry from a variety of angles, including both dealer and manufacturer perspectives. Prior to joining Cox Automotive, Mark was a Market Analyst with the National Automobile Dealers Association and was formerly with IHS Automotive, providing analytical products and industry insights to OEMs.

Eustace W. Mita

Eustace Mita is Chairman and CEO of ICONA Resorts, which owns and manages hotels in Avalon, Diamond Beach, Spring Lake, and Cape May, New Jersey and is the largest privately owned hotel chain in the state of New Jersey. In addition, Eustace is Chairman of Mita Management, a closely held company with interests in the automotive and real estate industries. 

Eustace is also CEO of Achristavest, LLC, a developer of waterfront properties in New Jersey, Nantucket, Maryland, Utah, and Pennsylvania, and the largest developer of oceanfront property in the state of New Jersey. Prior to forming Mita Management and Achristavest, Eustace was President and Chief Executive Officer of HAC Group, one of the world’s largest automotive dealer training and consulting groups with operations in nineteen countries worldwide, including throughout Europe and Asia. Eustace merged the HAC Group with one of the nation’s largest automotive TI companies, Reynolds & Reynolds (REY:NYSE) in 2000. (Reynolds has 5,000 employees serving 10,000 dealer customers worldwide.) 

Eustace has served on the Board of Directors of Penske Auto Group (PAG:NYSE) where he was Chairman of the Corporate Governance Committee as well as a member of the Compensation Committee. Mita also served on the Boards of Revnolds and Revnolds (REY:NYSE), CRW (CRW:NASDAQ) and First Republic Bank (FRBK:NASDAQ) and was a founding Chairman and Director of Carmoza, acquired by Manheim in 2012. In addition, Eustace has been a partner and consultant to both the Carlyle Group, and Penske Capital Partners, in private equity. 

Eustace and his wife Susanne have five children and 16 grandchildren.

Sheldon Sandler

Sheldon Sandler gained his initial experience in retail vehicle distribution in 1996 when he guided the IPO for Rush Enterprises, the first franchised vehicle dealer to go public.

Before founding Bel Air, Mr. Sandler spent eight years with the NYSE member firm Ladenburg Thalmann where he successfully completed over a dozen IPO’s and numerous M&A transactions. Previously Mr. Sandler served eleven years with the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Philadelphia branch, the last four as Chief Examiner. Sandler is a non-practicing CPA with a BS from Penn State and an MBA from the Fox School of Business at Temple University. 


Since founding Bel Air Partners in 1998, Sandler has been responsible for numerous auto dealership assignments nationwide. He is a widely sought-after speaker at industry events, column writer, and commentator on dealership valuation and the state of the “buy/sell” market.

Jay M. Ferriero

Jay M. Ferriero is the President and Chief Executive Officer at Capital Automotive Real Estate Services (previously Nasdaq: CARS), the leading specialty finance company focused on automotive retail real estate. Mr. Ferriero joined Capital Automotive in February 1999 as the Company’s Director of Acquisitions. 

Mr. Ferriero has spent his 43-year career bridging the Finance, Automotive, and Real Estate industries and brings a unique understanding of the overlap of the three. CARS sits in this nexus with over $6 billion invested in automotive properties. CARS’ strategy is to acquire and lease back the real estate property used by operators of multi-site, multi-franchised automotive dealerships throughout the U.S. 

From 1991 to 1994, Mr. Ferriero was Senior Vice President and Senior Lending Officer at Comerica Bank & Trust, overseeing all lending activities. Since 1980 and prior to 1991, Mr. Ferriero’s experiences included managing commercial loan processing operations, restructuring problem loans, and originating commercial and auto dealership loans.

Prior to joining Capital Automotive, from 1994 to 1999, Mr. Ferriero served as a First Vice President Loan Group and National Accounts Manager at Comerica Incorporated, a leading financial institution serving the automotive retail industry.  At Comerica, Mr. Ferriero was responsible for managing the auto dealer lending offices in Florida and Illinois, and had nationwide responsibilities for managing multi-bank credit facilities for some of the largest auto consolidators.

Mr. Ferriero serves as a member of the Business Advisory Council for the Mendoza College of Business and Fitzgerald Institute of Real Estate at the University of Notre Dame, where he is a graduate with degrees in Finance and Sociology. 

First Annual Auto Dealer Growth Strategy Retreat COMING SOON

For more information and to be alerted when conference dates are chosen, please complete this form: