Quick Hits …
(A few short items to get us started this week)
• ExxonMobil Retail Lubricants has recognized Repforce as its Agency of the Year for 2020 and Steve Gordon of Repforce as its Manufacturer Representative of the Year. Gordon is a three-time winner of the award. The agency has received this recognition three out of the last four years. Repforce represents the company in 14 states and multiple channels.
• The AAM Group announced the best new product winners from its recent online trade show, The Event 2020. Click here to see the winners.
• Booth space reservations are now being accepted for the 2021 SEMA Show, which is scheduled for Nov. 2-5 in Las Vegas. For more information, visit semashow.com/exhibitor.
• SEMA is accepting nominations for its hall of fame. The application deadline is Friday, March 19.
Transtar Sold To Private Equity Firm, Prepares
For New Period Of Growth
Blue Point Capital Partners, a private equity firm headquartered in Cleveland, has acquired majority ownership of the Transtar Holding Company, located in nearby Walton Hills, OH. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
This comes about four years after Monte Ahuja returned to Transtar, the company he founded, taking an unspecified “significant” stake in the business. Ahuja founded Transtar in 1975. This has been his third go-around with Transtar, having exited the business in 2005 and again in 2010.
After returning to the business in 2017, Ahuja and CEO Neil Sethi worked to stabilize operations and implement process improvements. As you may recall, earlier in 2017, Transtar emerged from Ch.-11 bankruptcy protection.
“I am very proud of the progress we have made to strengthen Transtar during the last four years,” Sethi said in the Blue Point transaction announcement dated Jan. 22, 2021. “Our customer and supplier relationships are stronger than ever, and we are well-positioned to build on our market leadership. We are excited about collaborating with Blue Point to enter into a new growth phase, which will include organic growth initiatives and planned acquisitions.”
Transtar’s current management team will continue to lead the organization and execute its growth strategies. Sethi and Joe Levanduski, CFO and COO, will continue in their current roles and will continue to own equity stakes in the business.
Blue Point Partner Chip Chaikin will serve as chairman of Transtar’s board of directors. Chaikin has been with Blue Point since 1998 and opened the group’s Shanghai office, which he continues to lead. Prior to Blue Point, Chip worked in business development for the Sara Lee Corp. in Hong Kong, as well as for Strategic Planning Associates (now part of Oliver Wyman), providing strategic consulting services to a number of Fortune 500 companies.
Ahuja will remain on the board as a director, maintaining an ownership stake in Transtar.
“We are excited to have found an investment partner in Blue Point, a well-respected local firm that matches our values and believes in the long-term growth potential of our business,” Ahuja said in the aforementioned press release. “We have complete confidence in their ability to support our near- and long-term goals, building on our core tenets of excellent quality and unmatched service.”
Transtar’s portfolio of brands includes Transtar Industries, RECON Certified, King-O-Matic, TransMart, Nickels Performance, ProKing, Transtar Autobody Technologies and ATCO.
Uni-Select Honors Top Canadian Suppliers
Uni-Select Inc. honored its top Canadian supply partners at its AUTOXPO virtual event held earlier this month. The initiative honors remarkable achievements, innovation and outstanding service. Brake Parts Inc. received the group’s Diamond Award, its highest recognition.
Other award winners were …
• Golden Ally – Sales Tools For Independent Jobbers & Installers: Mevotech.
• Golden Ally – Marketing Campaign Of The Year: Grote Industries.
• Golden Ally – Training & Technical Support: Gates Canada.
• Tech-Savvy Award: Dorman Products.
• Achiever – Automotive Parts: CDN Energy & Power Corp.
• Achiever – Paint & Body Equipment: ITW Evercoat.
• Achiever – Tools & Equipment: Milwaukee Electric Tool Corp.
FCP Euro Adds Chief Corporate Social Responsibility Officer
FCP Euro has added Jessica Hinman as its chief corporate social responsibility (CSR) officer. Her background includes time as manager of corporate social responsibility for Pratt & Whitney Aerospace.
“We are thrilled to have Jessica join the FCP Euro leadership team,” CEO Scott Drozd told The Greensheet. “Her knowledge and insight in the areas of creating a strong company CSR identity, cultivating nonprofit partnerships, and creating shared value will help drive the vision and mission of FCP Euro into the future.
“Jessica’s primary responsibilities will be the development of the vision, mission, planning and execution of FCP Euro’s corporate social responsibility initiatives through governance, people, market, community, environment and society.”
Treavor Hill Now Leads Piper Sandler’s Automotive Investment Banking Efforts
Treavor Hill has joined Piper Sandler, an investment bank and institutional securities firm headquartered in Minneapolis, to lead its automotive investment banking efforts.
“I’m very excited to have joined the Piper Sandler platform,” Hill told The Greensheet. “Piper is a Top-3 adviser to middle-market businesses in the U.S. and does have prior experience in the aftermarket, advising businesses like Fox Factory, Stag Parkway, Airxcel, BigTex Trailers, American Tire Distributors, among others. In my new role, I will be building out a dedicated vehicle aftermarket practice.”
Hill has spent the last five and a half years with Jefferies LLC, the majority of that time as its senior vice president for the automotive aftermarket. In that capacity, he focused on transaction sourcing and execution for both strategic advisory and capital markets transactions. This included the sale of ORS Medco to One Equity Partners, the sale of Interamerican Motor Corp. to Parts Authority, and the combination of AP Exhaust and Centric Parts to create APC Automotive Technologies.
Prior to joining Jefferies, Hill spent roughly five years with BB&T Capital Markets, including time as its vice president – automotive aftermarket, where he worked on mergers and acquisitions and capital-raising transactions for clients in the aftermarket. He helped to execute a number of transactions, including the sale of Curt Manufacturing to the Audax Group in addition to the sale of Cobb Tuning Products to Promus Equity Partners and Auto Meter Products.
Meyer Distributing Adds Virginia Cross-Dock
Meyer Distributing has added a cross-dock in Wytheville, VA. The facility has a direct, next-day feed from Meyer’s Jasper, IN distribution hub, which houses an inventory of automotive accessories, exhaust products and RV parts. “We’ve been looking for ways to better service customers in the western half of Virginia,” said CEO Jeff Braun. “The new cross-dock will increase the frequency and speed of delivery, particularly to customers in the Beckley, Princeton, Blacksburg, Roanoke and Lynchburg regions.”
K&N Appoints Senior VP Of Sales For North America
K&N Filtration has appointed Scott Galey as its senior vice president of sales for North America. He was vice president of business development.
Prior to joining K&N in March 2020, Galey was the senior vice president of sales for Goody Products, which sells hair accessories. He is a 14-year veteran of Newell Brands, serving in such capacities as customer vice president for department stores, as well as director of sales – Home Depot and grocery channel.
“I am excited to promote Scott to senior vice president of North American Sales for K&N Filtration, reporting directly to me,” CEO Richard Bisson told The Greensheet. “He has been with K&N for about nine months working closely and effectively with our key North American customers as we transform the company by rolling out ‘K&N Next 50.’
“Scott and his team are driving the growth plans for K&N. He will be responsible for all channels of distribution (automotive retail, online, warehouse distributors, and DIFM) in North America. Scott and I have worked together previously at Water Pik Inc., and he has proven to possess outstanding sales leadership and customer communication skills within the branded consumer space.”
Jay Litsey Joins Finished Lubricants, Chemicals Business Unit Of Calumet
After a six-month consulting engagement, Jay Litsey has joined Calumet’s Finished Lubricants & Chemicals business as director of channel marketing. The Finished Lubricants & Chemicals unit is composed of such brands as Royal Purple, Bel-Ray and TruFuel. Litsey’s focus was and will continue to be to develop and execute plans that generate short-term business results as well as long-term brand growth.
“I could not be more proud of the plans and results we have already generated with the great team and brands at Calumet, and am looking forward to generating the step change necessary to take us to the next level,” Litsey said. “I have been watching the Royal Purple and TruFuel brands’ success stories from afar and now have the opportunity to contribute to that success.”
Litsey’s background includes time as the vice president of sales and marketing for Factory Motor Parts, senior vice president of sales and marketing and global marketing director for the Technical Chemical Company, global sales director for ITW Global Brands, and various positions in district management for the Shell Oil Company and the Ford Motor Company.
H.I.G. Buys Continental Battery
An affiliate of the global alternative investment firm H.I.G. Capital has acquired Continental Battery from Incline Equity Partners, a private equity firm headquartered in Pittsburgh. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Dallas-based Continental is a distributor of aftermarket batteries to the automotive, commercial, electric utility vehicle, marine and industrial markets. The company services more than 30,000 dealers across a network of over 100 distribution locations in North America.
“We are excited to enter into this new chapter with H.I.G. as we continue to further enhance the Continental breadth and reach of our offering to better serve our customers,” said CEO Eric Royse. “H.I.G.’s distribution experience, combined with its proven ability to help companies grow through acquisition and market consolidation, will enable Continental to accelerate our successful growth trajectory.”
Continental’s existing management team will continue to run the business.
Tenno Tsai, managing director at H.I.G., said Royse and the Continental management team have a proven track record of building a best-in-class business and providing high levels of quality and service. “The company is a market leader with a diversified customer base, broad geographic footprint and differentiated distribution capabilities,” Tsai added. “We look forward to working with the team to build upon their success and support continued growth initiatives”
H.I.G. is no stranger to the auto care industry. Among its current holdings is Stant Corp. as well as Recochem, a manufacturer, marketer and distributor of aftermarket transportation and household fluids. Recochem’s portfolio of branded, private-label and bulk offerings includes coolant, windshield washer fluid and diesel exhaust fluid.
Ares Management is providing financing for the transaction. Harris Williams acted as financial adviser to Incline, while Dentons LLP was legal counsel to the company and Incline. Ropes & Gray LLP provided legal advice to H.I.G.
Continental Battery Adds Its First E-Commerce Account
The Continental Battery Company has announced the addition of Bridgeview Partners to its family. Primarily an e-commerce company known as batterysharks.com, Bridgeview does have commercial accounts as a notable percentage of its business as well, according to Continental.
With the addition of this new online selling platform, Continental expects to benefit from Bridgeview’s expertise and infrastructure to scale and leverage business-to-business and business-to-consumer online business. Continental also will gain brick-and-mortar facilities in such key markets as Massachusetts, Nevada, Maryland (Frederick) and Chicago.
“Bridgeview and associated platform entities have built a great business leveraging technology and superior fulfillment capabilities. Adding this platform expands our growth into e-commerce and gives us new geography, which fits into our overall plan of expansion,” said CEO Eric Royse.
Monro Facilities Director To Retire
Tom Giannone, director of facilities, will retire from Monro Inc. on April 30 after nearly 25 years with the company. “We extend our sincere thanks to Tom for his nearly 25 years of service at Monro and for all of his tremendous contributions to the company,” stated Rob Rajkowski, COO. “We congratulate Tom on his retirement and wish him all the best in his future endeavors.”
Advance Auto Parts And Worldpac Open Registration For STX 2022
Advance Auto Parts and Worldpac have opened registration for STX 2022. The biennial supplier and training expo is scheduled for March 23-27, 2022 in Orlando. It will mark the sixth time the two have hosted STX. Last year’s edition was cancelled.
Approximately 2,000 technicians, shop and business owners, service writers, manufacturers, suppliers, and students are expected to attend. More than 250 technical and management-focused courses will be held, led by instructors and trainers from the Worldpac Training Institute and Carquest Technical Institute.
“With a third full day of training added to our schedule, attendees will have more opportunities to select a wider range of technical and business classes, network with other shops, and learn more about our supplier’s best-in-class product assortment,” said Bob Cushing, executive vice president – professional at Advance and president of Worldpac.
PFC Brakes Partners With Solenium Group
PFC Brakes has announced a partnership with The Solenium Group to make PFC’s product details and attributes more widely available to its distributors and end users. This includes improving its ACES and PIES data, as well as upgrading its product imagery. The goal is to help PFC’s distributors accurately represent its products online and improve end users’ buying experience.
Lippert Components Unveils Rebrand: New Name, Logo And Brand Identity
Lippert Components Inc. (Elkhart, IN) — a manufacturer and supplier of engineered and customized products for the automotive, commercial vehicle, RV, marine and building products industries — is rebranding its core businesses to Lippert, although the parent company will remain LCI Industries.
Lippert will now represent all of the company’s core line of RV and commercial products formerly branded as Lippert Components, while Taylor Made, Curt, Lewmar and all of Lippert’s other sub brands will be “endorsed by Lippert” to reinforce Lippert’s role as a global manufacturer.
Along with the change, Lippert is introducing a revamped brand identity, including an updated logo, color scheme, design and messaging that uses the tagline “whenever, wherever, we make your experience better.”
Starting this month, Lippert will begin implementing the new brand through packaging, website updates, marketing collateral, social media channels, signage and more.
Lippert’s rebrand was done in partnership with Element Three, a marketing consultancy based in Indianapolis.
Bridgestone Names New Retail Operations President
Bridgestone Retail Operations (BSRO) has named Marko Ibrahim as its new president. Ibrahim succeeds Joe Venezia, who has led BSRO since 2017 and left to become the executive vice president and COO – stores at The Michaels Companies.
Ibrahim joined BSRO in 2018 as vice president of stores and was promoted to senior vice president of stores in 2020. He was responsible for store and field operations. In his new role, Ibrahim will oversee the total Bridgestone retail business, which includes more than 2,200 tire and automotive service centers nationwide operating under the Firestone Complete Auto Care, Tires Plus, Hibdon Tires Plus and Wheel Works brands.
Prior to joining Bridgestone, Ibrahim held a variety of leadership roles with various national retailers, including senior vice president of North America retail for Office Depot.
Christian Brothers Announces 2021 Expansion Plans
Christian Brothers Automotive on Jan. 15 announced its expansion plans for 2021, calling for the addition of at least 23 locations as well as 35 new and multi-unit franchise licenses. Development efforts will be focused on …
• West Philadelphia.
• Santa Fe, NM.
• Richmond, VA.
• Lake Jackson, TX.
• Winston-Salem, NC.
• Melbourne, FL.
• Bradenton, FL.
• Sarasota, FL.
In 2020, Christian Brothers completed 19 new store openings and closed no locations. Its network now exceeds 230 shops and more than 30 states.
Diesel Forward Announces Deal To Acquire Assets
Diesel Forward (Windsor, WI) — a provider of aftermarket diesel engine fuel systems and technical components for light-, medium-, heavy-duty and off-highway vehicles and equipment — has announced an agreement to purchase the assets of DIPACO of Reno, NV, which has been involved in the diesel parts aftermarket since 1948. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
The move is seen as expanding Diesel Forward’s fuel system product line with more than 1,000 additional SKUs of traditional fuel repair components and kits. The company plans to continue providing these products under the DIPACO brand. According to management DIPACO will be an additional product line that Diesel Forward adds to its portfolio.
Diesel Forward and its Alliant Power brand distribute aftermarket new and remanufactured parts through more than 20 central distributors and over 550 service dealers around the world.
Drivetec Expands To Western Canada
Drivetec Manufacturing has opened a location in Edmonton, Alberta in partnership with Capital Gear, operating out of its facility on 154th Street. Drivetec will carry an inventory of Chelsea PTO, Parker hydraulic pumps, Parker valving, hydraulic reservoirs and hydraulic components to service the vocational truck market.
The Edmonton location will support Drivetec’s existing TED and OEM partners that have national distribution. It also gives the company a presence in Western Canada.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, this is a soft opening, offering PTO builds and products for sale and shipping. Drivetec plans to ramp up to full Wetline installations, PTO and pump repairs, and custom hose manufacturing as the virus subsides.
Edmonton is Drivetec’s fourth location, joining sites in Oshawa, Ontario; Scarborough, Ontario; and Sudbury, Ontario.
FleetPride Expands In Georgia
FleetPride Inc. has acquired the assets of L&N Truck Service of Ellenwood, GA, which has a second location in Albany, GA. The move gives FleetPride 48 company-owned service centers. The Ellenwood and Albany locations are seen as avenues to expand FleetPride’s support of national accounts, as well as regional and local fleets.
CAWA Elects Board Members
The following CAWA board members have been elected to three-year terms …
• Michael Antonelli of IQ Integrated Quality.
• Dan Hanson Jr. of the Hanson Distributing Company.
• Greg Livingston of Alltrade Tools.
• Gary Mueller of Gibbs Trucks.
• Wayne Schaack of the Automotive Distribution Network.
MAPA Announces 2021 Board Of Directors
Greg Phillips of West Branch Automotive in West Branch, MI will serve as chairman of the Michigan Automotive Parts Association (MAPA) board of directors for 2021. He is joined by the following fellow officers …
• Vice Chairman: Rick Tervo of Auto Value of Houghton.
• Treasurer: Randy Foote of B & W Auto Supply in Portland.
• Immediate Past Chairman: John LaClair of Ross Automotive Supply in Lapeer.
Rounding out the board of directors is…
• Honorary Lifetime Director: Gary Deuling of Hart Automotive Supply in Hart.
• Director (District 1): Ed Thirlby of Thirlby Automotive in Traverse City.
• Director (District 2): Larry Meirndorf of The Parts Place NAPA in Holt.
• Director (District 3): Gordon Kociba of Huron Auto Parts in Bad Axe.
• Director (At-Large): Al Burch of Suburban Auto Supply in Swartz Creek.
• Director (At-Large): Brian Bailie of Freeland Auto Parts in Freeland.
• Director (At-Large): Darrell Liddell of Auto Value Bridgeport in Bridgeport.
• Advisory Committee Representative: Brian Reetz of Pine River Automotive in Alma.
MACS Elects Board For 2021
Andy Fiffick of Rad Air Complete Car Care (Cleveland) and Jim Atkinson of the Car Repair Company (Scottsdale, AZ) have been elected to two-year terms on the MACS Worldwide board of directors representing the service and repair sector.
Mark Schmitz of GPD (Macon, GA) and Troy Farr of 1-800-Radiator (West Jordan, UT) were elected to represent distributors, while Ryan Baker of Kenway Engineering (Sherburn, MN) and Al Leupold of Bergstrom Inc. (Rockford, IL) were elected to represent manufacturers.
The board will meet in February to choose officers and committees for 2021.
ASE Announces Board Members, Officers For The Coming Year
Mark Polke of Bosch Workshop Concepts – North America, Robert Bosch will serve as chair of the ASE board of directors for the coming year. Polke will be joined by the following fellow officers …
• Vice Chair: Brad Pellman of Pellman’s Automotive.
• Treasurer: Homer Hogg of Travel Centers of America.
• Secretary: Brian Szalk of FCA.
• Past Chair: Bobby Bassett, formerly of Gates Corp.
Additional board members are …
• John Hanighen of Cloyes Manufacturing.
• Ted Hayes of Hayes Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep.
• Mark Miller of GM Global Technical Center.
• Tom Palermo of Preferred Automotive Specialists.
• Jason Rainey of NAPA/AAA.
• Tom Trisdale of Toyota.
• Jeff Walker of Walker’s Automotive Service.
• John Wolf of Snap-on Business Solutions.
• ASE President and CEO Tim Zilke.
The members of the ASE board of governors are …
• Audra Acevedo of Dan’s Automotive Center.
• Karen Allison of Breeden Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep.
• Tejpal Singh Gill.
• David Johnson of the Ford Motor Company.
• David Kegley of Ryder System Inc.
• Fern Larochelle of Fern’s Body Shop.
• Kevin Looney of Kevin’s Diesel Service.
• Mike Mallett of Daimler Trucks North America.
• Brad Marshall of Bridgestone Retail Operations.
• Paul Mathias of Nissan North America.
• Rich Merchant of Advance Auto Sales.
• Roger Mesiemore of Hendrick Automotive Group.
• Kenny Rogers of TBC.
• Joshua Stone of American Honda.
• Dan Vespertino of Subaru.
In addition to the above-named officers, directors Hanighen, Hayes, Palermo, Pellman, Polke, Rainey, Trisdale, Walker, Wolf and Zilke also serve on the board of governors.
Direct, manage and coordinate a logistics operation incl. budget responsibility, focusing on all topics related to supplier logistics, intra-logistics and customer logistics. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
Premium OE and aftermarket brake company manufacturer is seeking professional and reputable representation. Experience in hard parts with established relationships and a keen understanding of the Traditional channel preferred. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
Expert for the highly complex product portfolio (e.g. competition, trends, user needs, Contact Person for major customers and Work out possible strategic opportunities with them). … (more) … Click here to find out more.
Working under the guidance of Director of Product Management will work to assure high level of ACES/PIES data quality, distribution and analysis of data to help company’s business profitably grow. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
We have made two corrections to a story from our Jan. 19 issue titled “Longtime CEO Takes Reins Of Investigative Firm Vaudra Int’l.” Oracle Lighting’s counsel, Edwin A Sisson, Attorney at Law, LLC, hired Vaudra International, not Oracle itself. Also, Vaudra didn’t send investigators to China, as the article stated. They were hired by Vaudra’s client and based in China. You can read a corrected version of the story here.
People Watching 1/25/21
• Bob Gearhart has retired as a sales manager at Stoner Inc. (Quarryville, PA), a company that sells high-performance car washes, waxes, polishes, and dressings for auto enthusiasts and car care professionals.
• Former International Brake Industries president Scott Mackie has joined National Business Brokers (NBB), a dealership brokerage firm, as senior vice president of the Midwest region. Mackie, from 2010-’13, was the president of Weld Racing. He also spent time as the general manager of ACDelco earlier in his career.
• Teresa Covington has left asTech to become the CFO of Lightning eMotors, a provider of commercial electric vehicles for fleets that is going public. Covington had been the finance chief of asTech since 2019.
• Mike Gingell — former vice president of R.L. Polk & Company’s aftermarket and commercial vehicle teams — is now the COO of FordDirect, a provider of digital marketing and advertising exclusively for Ford and Lincoln dealers. Gingell joined FordDirect as senior vice president of product, marketing and dealer engagement in 2019. His promotion is effective Feb. 1. At Polk, Gingell lead the efforts to create the Polk Inventory Efficiency Award.
• Sandi Freeman has joined the National Auto Body Council (NABC) as the program manager for its Recycled Rides initiative, which has gifted more than 2,600 vehicles to families in need since its launch in 2012. She replaces longtime NABC employee Linda Sulkala, who retired at the end of 2020. Freeman is a 20-plus-year veteran of Hertz, where she most recently was manager of replacement accounts.
• Ziebart has promoted Jason Case from corporate accounting manager to corporate controller. He is tasked with streamlining the company’s accounting department in addition to overseeing its annual audit and managing branch financials. Case has been with Ziebart since 2012.
• The Automotive Content Professionals Network has presented its 2021 ACPN Scholarship to Stacie Vargas of the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance. The award recognizes people with a passion and determination to pursue professional and personal growth. The scholarship covers the registration and hotel costs to attend ACPN’s annual Knowledge Exchange conference, which this year is scheduled for May 2-5 in Orlando, during the Auto Care Association’s inaugural Auto Care Connect event.
News Briefs 1/25/21
• Turn 14 Distribution has added valvetrain products from Ferrea Racing Components to its line card.
• Torque King 4×4 (formerly known as Quad 4×4) now offers application-specific exploded views to help consumers select the parts needed for their 4x4s, SUVs and light trucks.
• Icahn Enterprises — parent company to Auto Plus, Pep Boys, AAMCO, Precision Tune and others — consummated its offering of $750 million in 4.375% senior notes due 2029 via a private placement. Net proceeds from the offering are to be used to redeem a portion of Icahn Enterprises’ existing 6.25% senior notes due 2022.
• Bridgestone Canada has opened a new, $48 million (US) warehouse in Ancaster, Ontario. The new distribution center with a maximum storage capacity of 570,000 tires,will reduce transportation costs and shorten time-to-market for customers in Eastern Canada.
• KYB Americas Corp. has launched its 2021 video training series, consisting of seven short videos followed by a quiz. Topics include the role of shocks in vehicle control and safety systems and how to determine if shocks are worn enough to need replacement. For more information, visit kyb.com/training.
• PWR STEER Motion Control Systems, a division of Premium Guard Inc., has launched a new series of videos on proper servicing, installation and repair of power steering systems.
• The Mitchell 1 SocialCRM auto repair marketing service has added custom texting campaigns to its offerings, allowing auto repair shops to send personalized marketing messages directly to their customers’ phones. Custom text messaging campaigns are being offered at no additional cost to SocialCRM customers.
• Worksport Ltd. reports that it has received official notice from the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office that the filing for trademark protection for TerraVis COR, its line of mobile battery packs, has been accepted. TerraVis COR is a consumer-oriented extension of Worksport’s TerraVis solar-powered folding tonneau cover system. The COR battery system can be purchased and used without the TerraVis solar tonneau cover.
• Sensata Technologies has acquired a majority stake in Denmark-based Lithium Balance, a move designed to advance Sensata’s opportunities in electrification. Founded in 2006, Lithium Balance develops, manufactures and sells battery management systems.
• D&V Electronics (Woodbridge, Ontario), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Motorcar Parts of America, has established a non-exclusive strategic distribution partnership with Singapore-based TME Systems Pte Ltd. The pact is seen as enhancing D&V’s presence in Southeast Asia.
• Flexfab LLC of Hastings, MI is releasing its all-makes product data in PIES formatting so customers in the heavy-duty truck aftermarket and industrial distribution market can display Flexfab’s full product information on their websites. Flexfab is partnering with OptiCat to distribute its electronic product information.
• BBB Industries has launched a new website for Remy high-performance starters and alternators.
• Belle Tire is expanding into the Chicago area.
Event & Trade Show Briefs 1/25/21
• Leaders from National Pronto and the Automotive Distribution Network will discuss the merger that created the Pronto Automotive Distribution Network during an AASA supplier members only webinar on Feb. 19. Click here to register for the event.
• The 2021 Automotive Aftermarket Association of the Mid-South (AAAMS) plans to hold its 2021 business conference in person Sept. 23-26 at The Margaritaville Resort in Gatlinburg, TN.
• The first session of the SEMA Virtual Education Series “Sharpen Your Soft Skills,” hosted by the SEMA Businesswomen’s Network, will take place Tuesday, Jan. 26. Elizabeth Jacobs, owner of HR Culture Geek, will discuss methods to connect with management, as well as attaining salaries, raises and promotions. Click here for additional information on the webinar.