Quick Hits …
(A few short items to get us started this week)
• Carparts Distribution Center Inc., an Auto Value shareholder owner of the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance, is celebrating its 45th anniversary. Carparts services several Northeast cities and states, including Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. Headquartered in Plaistow, NH, the company operates 20 Carparts & Motor Supply parts stores and provides parts to more than 80 Auto Value Certified Service Centers.
• The Genuine Parts Company (GPC) has appointed Jonathan Cauthen as director of strategic business transformation. He previously was director of category management and before that, director of sourcing and procurement. Cauthen has been with GPC since 2012.
• Analysts with Raymond James have upgraded AutoZone Inc. to “strong buy,” calling the company a top pick in the retail sector. According to Seeking Alpha, analysts referred to AutoZone as “the proven, best-in-breed, consistent, long-term retail story that investors only get few chances over an entire career to acquire at a discount.”
Obituary: Tom Fitzmaurice, Retired Principle Partner Of Repforce
Tom Fitzmaurice, longtime sales executive and retired principle partner with Repforce, died Sept. 25. He was 81. Fitzmaurice spent more than 40 years in aftermarket sales, starting his own company in the mid-1980s. After several mergers with other partners, Fitzmaurice landed at Repforce as a principal partner, where he finished out the last several years of his career.
Regarded as a “gentle giant” by many who knew him, Fitzmaurice stood 6 feet, 5 inches tall and commanded respect from his peers not only for his size but for the way he treated people. A skilled salesman, Fitzmaurice’s affable, positive nature and unrelenting tenaciousness helped him create strong, trusted bonds with co-workers and customers alike.
“Anybody who knew Tom knew that he was an absolute gentleman, and he always had a twinkle in his eye,” said Greg Frankenfield, vice president of sales for Simple Green, one of Fitzmaurice’s longtime accounts “He played basketball in college and, on the court, I found out that he was a vicious competitor and that tenaciousness translated to business.”
“He was absolutely relentless about getting the business and keeping the business,” Frankenfield recalled. “Without him, we would not be on the map on the East Coast. He made deals without me involved. He knew what the parameters were, and he knew what was best for his customer. He constantly found ways to make it happen.”
Keith Craley, former Repforce president, remembered Fitzmaurice as a well-respected sales rep who forged strong bonds with his customers.
“Tom was such an incredibly gentle soul,” recalled Craley. “He was kind and just so ethically right on target — it’s hard to describe the positive nature of the guy. He was so respected by the manufacturers he represented with a loyalty that ran as deep as nothing I had ever seen. People had total respect for Tom. That made the transition seamless when he joined us. We didn’t lose a beat with any of those companies. They were all glad to do something for Tom and his years of service to them.”
Scott Preis, vice president of sales at Simple Green, worked with Fitzmaurice for many years and had this to say about his friend and mentor: “When I think of Tom and his approach to business, there are two common traits he exemplified and ones that I will always remember and cherish. One was his true and unwavering appreciation of all people and his giddiness and exuberance in making a deal and securing the order. No matter the size, whether large or small, Tom understood the significance of every meeting, every order, and the value of every customer. No matter which side of the desk one sat, Tom was the man that everyone wanted to spend more time with, as he was the master of melding laughter, business and fun in such an infectious and effective way.”
Preis remembered Fitzmaurice’s respect for others as a cornerstone of his character and the reason for his great success as a businessman.
“Tom and I would often spend time talking about success and shared a common view on our definition of it,” Preis said. “I know, without a doubt, that a great deal of Tom’s success in the industry was a direct derivative of his deep respect and appreciation for people in general. He actually cared and always wanted to convey that aspect. It was always the intangible that you just can’t teach; something you have, or you don’t. Tom Fitzmaurice will forever be my friend and was truly the best. My life will be forever enriched through the time I was fortunate enough to spend with him.”
Mark Moffitt, former sales manager with Repforce, remembered Fitzmaurice as charismatic, positive presence with a great sense of humor, as evidenced by the way he played on his large size, calling himself “the biggest sales rep in New York.”
“He was a wonderful guy, and he was a big man. He was always the biggest guy in the room,” Moffitt said. “He was a gentle giant with a wonderful personality. I don’t know anyone who didn’t like Tom.”
Moffit also remembered Fitzmaurice’s pride in his family, particularly his son, Jim, who followed in his footsteps and also is now a principle at Repforce like his father. “He was a family man,” Moffit said. “He’d talk about his grandkids, and you’d listen to him tell stories about his son, and the pride would burst out of him. He was just delightful to talk to.”
Fitzmaurice’s son, Jim, said he owes a lot to his father for teaching him how to succeed in a business that is often fiercely competitive. “He always taught me the basics of the business,” Jim Fitzmaurice said. “He’d always say ‘take care of little things, and the big things will work themselves out.’ That advice seemed to work for me very well.”
Jim Fitzmaurice said he will always remember his father’s love for his work and how that translated into everything he did. “He had a deep passion for the business and really enjoyed it, or he wouldn’t have been in it,” Jim Fitzmaurice said. “He just loved people.”
Tom Fitzmaurice is survived by his wife of 55 years, Linda; three children, Carrie (Phil); Tom (Brenda); and Jim (Kathy); eight grandchildren, Gavin, Maggie, TJ, Brendan, Bridget, Emma, James and Logan; a sister, Ellen Ferrara; and many nieces and nephews.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the St. Francis Hospital Foundation, Office of Development, 100 Port Washington Blvd., Roslyn, NY 11576 or to Father Jim O’Shea, Immaculate Conception Church, 86-45 Edgerton Blvd., Jamaica Estates, NY 11432.
To view his online obituary, go to: legacy.com/amp/obituaries/newsday/196871407.
Chick Capoli Sales Company Seeks Rep Agencies
The New Jersey-based Chick Capoli Sales Company is looking to acquire small- or medium-size rep agencies in the Northeast, Southeast or Midwest.
Established in 1982, Chick Capoli Sales represents multiple major application parts product lines to automotive wholesale distributors and retailers. It has grown its territory over the decades to include the entire East Coast from New England to Florida.
Some of the companies it is partnered with include members of the Automotive Distribution Network, Automotive Parts Services Group, Fisher Auto Parts, Hahn Automotive, National Parts Warehouse, Keystone Automotive/LKQ, Pep Boys, Auto Plus, Advance Auto Parts, Carquest, NAPA and AutoZone.
Company founder and president Chick Capoli said industry trends point to the consolidation of smaller rep companies into larger ones, a shift he said also is reflected in vendors, who now prefer to deal with one larger company rather than several smaller ones.
“Given the ongoing and inevitable consolidation at all levels of aftermarket distribution and the vendor community, there is a tremendous amount of uncertainty and unrest,” Capoli said. “Today, vendors, distributors, groups and retailers are growing and merging forces or shrinking and exiting the industry forever. It seems this trend will continue to limit the ongoing prospects for independent rep groups.”
Capoli said he believes the best chance of survival for the rep industry as a whole is to join forces and work together.
“We believe that one of the most attractive and logical methods of growth is to expand our company footprint by purchasing companies that can add value to our business model and product offering,” noted Capoli, who said he hopes to attract smaller, established companies already working with national, semi-national distributors, retailers and corporate offices.”
“Unlike most of our competition that spreads themselves too thin, we are an extremely focused company, and our only market is the automotive aftermarket, which would include traditional and mega-retailers,” Capoli said. “Another thing that sets us apart is we only rep automotive lines to the auto trade only, and our focus is replacement parts. This puts us in a position to know our products better and to know our customers better.”
The company also has a “next generation” succession plan, something Capoli said he believes positions it well for the future. Under its plan, Capoli’s sons, Chick Jr. and Angelo Capoli, who have both been with the company for 28 years, will assume leadership when he retires.
“This is something that’s important to vendors and customers,” Capoli said. “They want to know that things will go unchanged.”
Alliance Winter Shareholder Meeting Goes Virtual
The Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance has announced that it will host its 2020 winter shareholder meeting online, citing continued pandemic-related concerns. The event, which will take place Dec. 9-11, will include updates for shareholder owners and channel partners, the unveiling of this year’s channel partner awards and cocktail receptions, including a Canada Night reception for shareholder owners and channel partners north of the U.S. border.
“Canada Night at AAPEX is always an enjoyable night for members of the Canadian aftermarket, both professionally and personally,” said Bob Jaworski, president and general manager of Auto Electric Service and incoming chair of AIA Canada. “With the traditional Canada Night during Industry Week being canceled this year, we are grateful to The Alliance for thinking outside the box and stepping up to host this event as a part of their winter shareholder meeting.”
Further details about the meeting will be announced when registration opens Nov. 2.
Ideal Supply Taps Mike Smith As General Sales Manager
Ideal Supply (Listowel, Ontario) has appointed Mike Smith to the role of general sales manager for the company, tasked with managing the strategic direction of Ideal’s three sales divisions: electrical, industrial and automotive.
Smith has worked his way through the Ideal organization over 28 years, including time in the warehouse, several branches and purchasing. He has been the company’s electrical division sales manager since 2012.
Ideal Supply, a subsidiary of Groupe Deschenes Inc., is billed as Canada’s largest NAPA Auto Parts distributor.
Lippert Components Names Chief Marketing Officer
Elkhart, IN-based Lippert Components Inc. (LCI) has appointed Joe Thompson as its chief marketing officer. Thompson joined LCI in 2019 with its acquisition of the Curt Group, where he was marketing chief. Thompson has more than 30 years of consumer product sales and marketing leadership experience, including time as the senior vice president of marketing for Lund International.
In his new capacity, Thompson will structure a new global marketing organization to service all of LCI’s current and future brands. More specifically, he and LCI Vice President of Marketing Jarod Lippert will work together to create a unified organizational structure to promote new products and services, grow the company’s digital presence, develop customer loyalty, engage audiences and increase sales.
Thompson reports to both Jamie Schnur, group president – aftermarket, and Rock Lambert, president of the Curt Group.
LCI is a supplier of components for OEMs in the recreation and transportation product markets, as well as their related aftermarkets. Curt’s product portfolio includes thousands of SKUs across various lines, encompassing hitches, towing electricals, ball mounts and cargo management products. Among its top brands are Aries, Luverne, Retrac and UWS.
Lucas Oil Promotes Melissa Wonser To Marketing VP
Lucas Oil Products has promoted Melissa Wonser to vice president of marketing. Since joining the company in 2011, Wonser has taken on the roles of digital marketing manager, art director, marketing manager and director of marketing. She has played a key role in the daily management of Lucas Oil’s marketing and creative direction, leading the graphics department and website development team, as well as its media and public relations efforts, among other responsibilities.
In the new role, Wonser is responsible for developing and implementing a cohesive and integrated marketing communications plan, as well as increasing brand awareness in the industries and sectors Lucas Oil serves.
Vic Wood Joins Speedmaster As VP Of Sales For North America
Speedmaster, a high-performance engine parts company based in Australia and the United States, has hired Vic Wood as its vice president of sales for North America. A performance aftermarket veteran and native Australian, Wood will serve as the face of Speedmaster in the United States and will represent the brand at all levels of sales and distribution.
Wood was the vice president of sales distribution and racing for the MW Company. His background includes time as the vice president and general manager of Aeromotive Inc., vice president of sales for Hedman Hedders and general manager of McLeod Industries.
Wood’s addition comes at a time when Speedmaster is expanding its manufacturing and distribution. The company has offices in Sydney, Los Angeles and Shanghai.
“Selecting the right person to represent the brand is never easy, and Vic ticked all the boxes,” said CEO Jason Kencevski. “Aggressive growth over recent years requires someone with the skill, experience and expertise to ensure our clients receive the communication and trust they have come to expect from Speedmaster. It’s exciting on many levels for all involved.”
N.A. Williams Adds Territory Sales Manager
Alex Goodemoot has joined the N.A. Williams Company as a territory manager in the Southeast. He is Master ASE certified with 25 technical certifications in automobile, medium duty, heavy duty, collision and undercar. For the last two and a half years, Goodemoot was a key account sales manager for Standard Motor Products.
Lubrication Specialties Inc. Hires COO
Lubrication Specialties Inc. (LSI) — manufacturer of Hot Shot’s Secret performance additives and oils as well as a custom lubricant products provider for industrial clients — has expanded its senior leadership with the addition of Steve deMoulpied as COO. DeMoulpied comes to LSI from the private client services practice of Ernst & Young, where he managed strategy and operational improvement engagements for privately held client businesses.
His career has included time as vice president of strategic development and director of strategic initiatives at OptumHealth, as well as time with General Electric in operations improvement. deMoulpied also is the founder of PrestoFresh, an e-commerce food and grocery business.
RPP Products Opens Pennsylvania Packaging, Manufacturing Facility
RPP Products — a provider of oil, lubricants, windshield wash, antifreeze, coolant, additives and aerosols to the convenience and grocery distribution channels — recently hosted a grand-opening event for a 180,000-square-foot facility in Butler, PA, the company’s fifth location nationwide. The new facility packages and manufactures windshield wash fluid and diesel exhaust fluid. Operations began this month.
Mark Iasiello Joins Hart Marx Advisors
Heavy-duty aftermarket veteran Mark Iasiello has joined the merger and acquisition strategy firm Hart Marx Advisors as its vice president of heavy duty and commercial vehicles, responsible for heavy-duty market business development activities.
Iasiello was general manager of Power Heavy Duty and Vipar Heavy Duty’s director of business development. Prior to that, he was vice president of the Heavy Duty Manufacturers Association and western division sales director and national heavy-duty sales manager for Dayco Products.
“He brings an incredible depth of knowledge and respect in the HD and commercial vehicle markets, an area of significant investment and consolidation in recent years,” said Tom Marx, senior partner. “We expect heavy-duty M&A activity to continue and even accelerate in 2021 and beyond.”
Iasiello’s addition to the firm comes as Vipar has announced a partnership with Hart Marx Advisors that makes the firm available to distributors through the network’s Business Resource Center.
Vipar Heavy Duty Partners With Hart Marx Advisors
Vipar Heavy Duty has announced a partnership with Hart Marx Advisors (HMA), a consulting firm that assists companies in the automotive and heavy-duty industries with mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, and capital formation for private-equity placements. The pact makes HMA available to distributors through the network’s Business Resource Center.
“The Business Resource Center has seen success offering distributors access to business growth planning and in-network connections since its inception in 2018,” said Wendi Frederick, certified exit planning adviser and manager of rebate administration for Vipar. “We feel Hart Marx Advisors’ ability to assist our distributors with their long-term business planning — combined with their in-depth knowledge of the Vipar Heavy Duty business model — will make for a highly valuable resource.”
HMA senior partner Tom Marx has more than 30 years of experience in the heavy-duty aftermarket and has had a professional relationship with Vipar for more than a decade. Additionally, the firm recently added Mark Iasiello as its vice president of heavy duty and commercial vehicles. Iasiello was general manager of Power Heavy Duty and Vipar’s director of business development.
The Friedkin Group Launches Automotive Accessories Manufacturing Business
The Friedkin Group — a privately held consortium of automotive, hospitality, entertainment, sports and adventure companies, including Gulf States Toyota, US AutoLogistics and the Ascent Automotive Group — has launched an automotive accessories manufacturing business called the Accelerated Solutions Group LLC (ASG).
ASG will produce a variety of mats, interior trim and exterior trim accessories. Its first interior products are custom-fit carpeted cargo mats designed for most Toyota models. Its first exterior products are expected to come out in early 2021.
Currently, ASG sells primarily to Gulf States Toyota but is in discussions with other potential wholesale and aftermarket customers, according to a company spokesperson.
Gabe Mitchell leads the new venture as president, with Charles Paulson serving as director of manufacturing and engineering. Paulson was the senior manager of product engineering at Gulf States Toyota, responsible for the engineering team that developed and delivered port-installed automotive accessory products on Toyota vehicles.
Mitchell was the director of engineering at Gulf States Toyota, where he oversaw multiple departments, including manufacturing engineering, continuous improvement, facilities, project management, and product development for both vehicle processing and service parts distribution. This included warehouse management system implementation, labor management system implementation, warehouse site expansion and process redesign, and manufacturing site expansion.
“We realize that, as new vehicle architecture and designs become more complex, integrating aftermarket accessories can become more difficult,” Mitchell said. “ASG is well-positioned to design and manufacture products at the caliber and quality expected by automotive manufacturers, dealers and consumers.”
Mahle Announces Data Agreement For Mercedes-Benz Vehicles
Mahle has announced an agreement with Daimler AG regarding access to the encoded OBD diagnostic ports of Mercedes-Benz vehicles.
According to Mahle, users of Mahle TechPro or Brain Bee Connex diagnostic tools users can now retrieve vehicle data via the Cyber Security feature. Security certificates are obtained by accessing the Daimler portal with an annual subscription from Mahle or Brain Bee.
As a special promotion, Mahle is offering holders of an active license free access until the end of the year.
AAMCO Joins Fleetio’s Maintenance Provider Network
AAMCO Transmissions & Total Car Care has joined Fleetio’s maintenance provider network. This allows Fleetio customers — which operate fleets ranging in size from five vehicles to 50,000 vehicles — to receive diagnostic and repair services at any of AAMCO’s almost 600 locations nationwide.
“For AAMCO, the Fleetio partnership gives us an opportunity to offer local fleets the same standard of service that has historically been available only for large national accounts,” said Brian O’Donnell, AAMCO’s chief strategy officer.
The operator of a fleet vehicle can find a nearby shop, get a diagnosis, electronically approve or reject work, have the vehicle serviced, and make payment — often with discounts, according to Fleetio — with the entire process automated by Fleetio’s system, which can be accessed via web and mobile-based applications.
“Partnering with AAMCO allows our fleet customers of any size to take advantage of AAMCO’s reputation as total car care and transmission specialists, while also gaining insights into the complete maintenance lifecycle and total cost of ownership for their fleet,” said Greg Mattes, director of product strategy at Fleetio.
RepairPal Announces Expanded Relationship With Warranty Provider
The Dealer Owned Warranty Company (DOWC) — a provider and administrator of finance and insurance (F&I) products and services — has deepened its integration with RepairPal, allowing DOWC contract holders to find local repair shops and start the claim process directly from DOWC’s website in addition to its call center. “RepairPal Certified shops are trained on the DOWC claims processes, so DOWC customers save both time and money while getting high-quality repairs,” said Kathleen Long, vice president and general manager of RepairPal.
There are more than 2,600 RepairPal Certified shops nationwide, according to the company.
In-Person Event: Registration Opens For MACS Trade Show
Registration is now open for ACcess, MACS’ 41st annual training event and trade show, which will take place Feb. 3-6 at the Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando. According to the association, MACS Worldwide is planning its event “with careful consideration to the current pandemic, and is including safety and security measures as we move forward to create a valuable training and networking experience.”
ACess 2021 will include A/C training for passenger cars, light trucks, heavy-duty trucks and off-road vehicles; a trade show featuring manufacturers and suppliers of A/C systems, components, tools and equipment; networking opportunities; a golf tournament; and a keynote luncheon.
For hotel reservations, click here.
Automechanika Shanghai Adds Virtual Elements, Creating Hybrid Experience
Automechanika Shanghai — at this point still scheduled to take place as an in-person event Dec. 2-6 — has added online elements for overseas visitors who cannot physically attend the trade show. The service, AMS Live, will be available from Nov. 30 to Dec. 6, running alongside the physical show.
“Exhibitors at the exhibition ground can still take advantage of in-person interactions, as well as engage with global stakeholders online, whether it be for business exchange, marketing, trade or education,” said Fiona Chiew, deputy general manager of Messe Frankfurt (HK) Ltd. “After all, it is the synergy of auto players that allows businesses as well as the fair itself to thrive.”
Key features of AMS Live include …
• Networking opportunities using live chat, video calls and more: Buyers tuning in electronically will be able to network and connect in real-time with exhibitors via one-to-one online meetings, business matchmaking services, chat rooms, streamed programs and more.
• Matching queries to exhibitors: When buyers conduct product or service queries, the AMS Live platform will find potential supplier matches, and interested exhibitors can initiate conversations to discuss business opportunities.
• Getting involved with live-streamed onsite activities: Online participants will be able to engage with onsite activities via the Auto Discovery Channel, which will offer conferences and training sessions; the Interactive & Entertainment Channel, which will include onsite interviews, tours, the show’s motorsport and high-performance event, and other entertainment offerings; and the Exhibitor Live Channel, which will feature a collection of exhibitor events, such as product presentations, pitches and launches.
AMS Live will allow users to re-watch conferences on-demand, as well as record product and exhibitor events for future reference. The platform also will include an online calendar to help virtual attendees manage meetings and receive notifications regarding appointments. For more information about AMS Live, visit automechanika-shanghai.com/ams-live.
Automechanika Shanghai is likely one of the few large-scale automotive trade shows being held in 2020. Event organizers expect more than 5,000 exhibitors to participate.
ASA Honors Key Volunteers During Virtual Annual Business Meeting
The Automotive Service Association (ASA) presented the following volunteer awards during its Oct. 9 annual business meeting …
• Alpha Award: Jeff Buckley of My Father’s Shop in Midlothian, TX.
• Phoenix Award: Scott Benevidez of Mr. B’s Paint & Body Shop in Albuquerque, NM.
• Legislative Award: Chris Ramirez of RR/C Collision Center in Casper, WY.
• Affiliate of the Year: ASA Florida.
• Benefit Provider of the Year: Dell Technologies.
• Communicator of the Year: Maryann Croce of Croce’s Transmission Specialists in Norwalk, CT.
• Chairman Award of Excellence: Roy Schnepper of Butler’s Collision in Roseville, MI.
Registration Opens For Five November TIA Online Seminars
The Tire Industry Association (TIA) has opened registration for five free virtual commercial and retail tire educational sessions originally scheduled to take place during the 2020 Global Tire Expo and SEMA Show. The online sessions will take place Tuesday, Nov. 3, and Wednesday, Nov. 4.
The Nov. 3 educational sessions are …
• “A Decade of CSA” with Kevin Rohlwing, senior vice president of training for TIA, who will discuss changes to the Compliance, Safety & Accountability (CSA) program since its introduction 10 years ago, as well as provide an overview of what CSA looks like today and address what it means for commercial tire dealers as the needs of fleets shift from repair to preventive maintenance.
• “Vehicle Lifting Safety,” a panel discussion with Dale Soos, senior project engineer at the Automotive Lift Institute (ALI), and Janelle Storey, certification program coordinator for ALI. They will discuss factors to consider before attempting to raise a vehicle, including equipment maintenance, selecting the proper lift points, and safety procedures for alternative-fuel and specialty vehicles. Matthew White, director of tire service for TIA, will moderate.
• “Successful Tire Dealers Share Their Secrets” with Rohlwing, who will interview winners of the Tire Business Tire Dealer Humanitarian Award and the Tire Review Top Shop Award.
The Nov. 4 educational sessions are …
• “Minimizing Risk when Servicing Truck Tires” with Rohlwing, who will address OSHA findings on hazards when servicing commercial truck tire and wheel assemblies, as well as provide guidelines that commercial tire technicians can follow to minimize risk.
• “Correcting Ride Complaints,” a panel discussion with Greg Meyer, product manager for wheel balancers at Hunter Engineering, and Stewart Peregrine, a regional sales manager for Hennessy Industries, who will join TIA’s training team to provide tips on diagnosing and repairing noise, vibration and harshness concerns. Shawn Pease, director of automotive tire service at TIA, will moderate.
Registration is free and open to the entire industry. Click here for additional information on the sessions.
USTMA: Tire Recycling Isn’t Keeping Up With Scrap Tire Generation
While tires remain one of the most recycled products in the United States, end-of-life markets are not keeping pace with the annual generation of scrap tires, according to a new study from the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA).
The association’s 2019 Scrap Tire Management Report indicates that nearly 76% of scrap tires in 2019 were recycled into such products as automotive products, rubber-modified asphalt, mulch and tire-derived fuel. However, this was down from 96% in 2013, when USTMA estimates that scrap tire recycling peaked.
The association’s research shows that, while the number of scrap tires generated each year grew by almost 7%, the total number of scrap tires recycled or reclaimed has not significantly changed since 2017. Further, 56 million scrap tires remain in stockpiles, mostly in Arizona, Colorado, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, Texas, Virginia and Washington. And, half of those states — New Jersey, New Mexico, Texas and Virginia — do not have active stockpile cleanup programs, according to USTMA.
“Efforts to find and develop new uses for scrap tires have stalled,” said Anne Forristall Luke, president and CEO of USTMA. “We must take immediate steps to grow new and existing markets to recycle 100% of scrap tires. This not only protects our health and the environment, it drives innovation and jobs.”
USTMA urges state regulators, federal lawmakers, recyclers, industry and environmental groups, and academic partners to …
• Invest in sustainable infrastructure like rubber-modified asphalt and stormwater infiltration galleries.
• Change transportation specifications to allow the use of rubber-modified asphalt.
• Support reasonable fees on the sale of new tires to manage state programs.
• Research the lifecycle impacts of scrap tires in different end-use markets.
• Encourage the growth of reuse and recycle markets.
• Create a national portal for states to share data.
• Grow scrap tire reuse and recycle markets.
• Consider scrap tires in climate policies.
• Create innovation challenges.
• Enforce state laws.
• Clean up piles.
Companies Join Forces To Plan Virtual Engine Performance Expo
Rottler Manufacturing, Total Seal and Race Winning Brands are teaming up to produce an interactive, free online educational event Jan. 7-9 called the Engine Performance Expo. The three-day event is geared toward engine builders, suppliers, machinists and equipment manufacturers.
Each day of the expo will feature five technical seminars and five demonstration sessions. Each seminar will be pre-recorded but will be followed by a live question-and-answer session between viewers and speakers. And, each seminar will be followed by a pre-recorded demonstration on a related topic, also followed by a live question-and-answer session.
All content also will be available to be viewed on-demand. For more information on the event, visit engineperformanceexpo.com.
Asbury Automotive Touts Continued Recovery In Parts, Service
The Asbury Automotive Group (Duluth, GA), one of the largest automotive retail and service companies in the United States, on Oct. 14 reported preliminary financial results for the three months ended Sept. 30, 2020. Management expects Asbury’s third-quarter 2020 adjusted net income per diluted share to rise between 72% and 75% compared to last year. Additionally, same-store gross profit is forecast to increase between 6% and 7% due, in part, to a “continued recovery in parts and service.”
Asbury will release its official third-quarter financial results Oct. 27.
A Fortune 500 company, Asbury has 90 dealerships consisting of 113 franchises representing 31 domestic and foreign brands of vehicles, as well as 25 collision repair centers.
Penske Automotive Group Reinstates Dividend
The Penske Automotive Group (Bloomfield Hills, MI) — an international transportation services company that operates automotive and commercial truck dealerships across the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Western Europe — has reinstated its dividend, declaring a cash dividend of $0.42 per share payable Dec. 1 to shareholders of record Nov. 10.
“The actions we took to mitigate the impact of Covid-19, coupled with the improvement in business conditions in the third quarter, were instrumental in our ability to preserve liquidity and repay $300 million in senior subordinated notes in August, at their maturity,” said Chairman Roger Penske. “I am confident in the strength of our financial position and our ability to reinstate the dividend at this time.”
As of June 30, Penske operated 317 retail automotive franchises of which 145 were located in the United States and 172 were located overseas.
Four High School Auto Tech Programs Win Harbor Freight Awards
Four public high school automotive teachers are among this year’s winners in the Harbor Freight Tools “Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence” competition. The automotive teacher winners are …
• Michael Shephard of the Union County Career & Technical Institute (Scotch Plains, NJ).
• Wayne Violet of Washington County Technical High School (Hagerstown, MD).
• Brian Manley of Cherry Creek Innovation (Centennial, CO).
• Robert Caylor of Gulfport High School (Gulfport, MS).
Grand-prize winners — including Manley and their schools — will receive $100,000, with $70,000 going to the high school skilled trades program and $30,000 going to the teacher. The other winners — including Caylor, Shephard and Violet — will each receive $50,000, with $35,000 going to the public high school skilled trades program and $15,000 to the teacher.
Alltech Automotive LLC, a dynamic global automotive supplier, is seeking an experienced Catalog Manager from the automotive industry. This individual will be responsible for researching and updating data for all hard parts product lines and maintaining both a print version and online database that is compatible with Activant, Wrench Head and ACES/PIES formats … (more) … Click here to find out more.
Alltech Automotive LLC, a dynamic global automotive supplier, is seeking a Regional Sales Manager to represent products it sells into the Automotive Aftermarket. The Regional Sales Manager is responsible for the execution of the corporate sales and marketing plan. As a sales manager, you will direct all sales-related activities within the assigned region. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
We are currently seeking to hire an Aftermarket Product/Catalog Manager to join our team and improve customer support, covering current and new product introduction of aftermarket products. This individual will be an important part of developing GSP North America strategies … (more) … Click here to find out more.
Looking to augment Inside sales/telemarketing/customer support for group approved programs. Make calls to jobber level accounts from home. Great for a retired factory or independent rep looking to supplement income by working 20 to 25 hours/wk. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
We are looking for an accomplished Vice President of National Sales to join our growing team to expand distribution and sales of Sea Foam products throughout various channels to include aftermarket retailers, heavy-duty truck, marine, farm, hardware, C-store, motor sports and small engine. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
People Watching 10/19/20
• Jackie Roberts-Kostas has joined RevolutionParts as its chief of staff. Phoenix-based RevolutionParts operates an enterprise-ready dealership e-commerce platform for parts selling. Roberts-Kostas has been the executive director of SparkLabs Frontier-ASU, a university accelerator program at Arizona State University. She will remain with SparkLabs as a venture partner.
• The Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance has hired Kendall Schaus as a field sales representative, reporting directly to JC Washbish, vice president of sales and marketing. Schaus will work directly with Alliance national accounts and Auto Value, Bumper to Bumper and Confidence Plus Certified Service Centers. She also will assist shareholder owners with various sales initiatives. Schaus graduated from Northwood University earlier this year after earning both her bachelor’s degree and Master of Business Administration (MBA) in four years.
• Deshawna Ross has joined TruckPro LLC as its manager of talent acquisition. Ross was senior manager of corporate development for Hilton. Prior to her time in the hospitality industry, Ross worked for AutoZone Inc. in human resources, talent acquisition and corporate recruiting.
• Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) is promoting Keith Robertson, vice president of demand and supply management (DSM), to group vice president of supply chain management (SCM), effective Oct. 26. He will replace Randy Pflughaupt, group vice president of SCM, who is retiring after 38 years with Toyota. In his new role, Robertson will be responsible for all North America vehicle supply chain operations, including DSM, project planning and management, and Toyota logistics services (TLS).
• Oil-Dri Corp. of America has appointed Larry Washow, a current director, as the vice chairman of its board of directors. Washow has been a member of the board since 2013. He is a former president and CEO of AMCOL International Corp., which is now Mineral Technologies Inc.
News Briefs 10/19/20
• Sako Auto Parts has joined Bestbuy Distributors Limited as a full member shareholder. Jacob and Sam Yako, formerly of Paste Auto Parts in Toronto, are back in the jobber store business with the opening of a new operation in Barrie, Ontario.
• Signet Capital Advisors — a financial advisory firm providing sell-side, buy-side, capital raising and debt-placement services to middle-market clients — served as buy-side adviser to Valley View, OH-based B’laster Corp. in its acquisition of AC Avalanche. SCA’s team helped craft the letter of intent, negotiated the deal, raised the transaction capital, and worked with management to refine short- and long-term growth plans.
• Continental Battery has expanded into Arizona with the addition of Tucson-based General Power, a 30-year-old battery business, to its network.
• Turn 14 Distribution has expanded its assortment of truck, SUV and Jeep accessories with the addition of Go Rhino, and added Carven Exhaust’s line of cat-back systems, mufflers and additional exhaust accessories to its line card.
• VIP Tires & Service has relocated its Windham, Maine store from Roosevelt Trail to Amato Drive, having outgrown its previous location. According to management, the new building is larger, has more customer capacity for service needs, and allows for tire storage inside the building that wasn’t possible at the old location.
• Strickland Brothers 10 Minute Oil Change has opened a new prototype shop in Winston Salem, NC. Management plans to scale the new, more efficient design across the United States.
• Strickland Brothers has announced two new franchise owners: Spencer Grogan, who will be developing three locations in the Cypress, TX area; and Dustin Gay, who will be developing two locations in the Pensacola, FL area along with Grogan.
• The first SpeeDee Oil Change & Auto Service franchise location in the Las Vegas market opened Oct. 5.
• Tint World Automotive Styling Centers has announced the franchise’s first location in Iowa. Tint World Urbandale will provide a variety of automotive styling and safety services, including vehicle tint, paint protection film, vehicle wraps, ceramic coating, mobile electronics, advanced driver-assistance systems, car stereo upgrades and work truck upfitting. The shop in Urbandale is to be the first of three Tint World locations under the ownership of local franchisees Earl and Shirley Macleod.
• Wawanesa Insurance has selected Honk Technologies’ platform connecting drivers, towing professionals and insurers to manage Wawanesa’s roadside assistance program.
• Dayco’s aftermarket division has announced a new warranty. Effective Oct. 15, when a technician or a DIYer purchases a Dayco water pump or Dayco timing belt kit with water pump, they can register their purchase online to be covered for 125,000 miles (United States) or 201,000 kilometers (Canada). The extended warranty is contingent upon installation according to OEM service instructions, including flushing the cooling system and installing new coolant that meets OEM specifications.
• Meyer Products LLC now offers Ram– and Jeep-licensed snowplows and spreaders for homeowners, independent contractors and fleet purchasers. The products will be available at participating Ram and Jeep dealerships.
• Axalta’s online refinish curriculum is now available to all vocational schools at no charge. The multi-week curriculum covers customer service, detailing, body repair, measuring techniques and painting.
Event & Trade Show Briefs 10/19/20
• MACS Worldwide has scheduled its 2021 Training Event & Trade Show for Feb. 3-6 at the Rosen Center in Orlando. Registration will open Nov. 1. Click here for additional information about the event.
• AAPEX organizers are hosting a webinar and import segment panel discussion Tuesday, Oct. 20 on trends impacting the North American aftermarket. Presenters will include Todd Campau, associate director for automotive solutions at IHS Markit; Bob Cushing, executive vice president – professional at Advance Auto Parts; Malcolm Sissmore, vice president of sales – North America independent aftermarket at Delphi; Bill Moss, owner of EuroService Automotive and president of BIMRS; and John Treece, president and CEO of DMA Sales. Click here to register.
• AAPEX organizers are hosting a webinar Oct. 27 on how sales in 2020 are measuring up to expectations. Nathan Shipley, executive director and industry analyst at NPD, will share insights into consumer attitudes that will shape the coming year, as well as provide an outlook on sales for 2021 and beyond. Click here to register for this presentation.
• The Young Auto Care Network Group (YANG) has announced the speakers and panelists for its Oct. 21 Virtual Experience, which will serve as a modified form of YANG’s annual leadership event.
• Truck Hero plans to offer its 2018 SEMA Show truck build Ultimate Tailgate, a custom 2019 Ford F-350 Lariat, at the Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction on Friday, Oct. 23. All proceeds from the sale will benefit Building Homes for Heroes, a nonprofit organization that builds and modifies homes and then gifts them, mortgage-free, to veterans and their families. Click here for more information about the auction and truck build.
• The Automotive Maintenance & Repair Association (AMRA) will host a free webinar Oct. 28 featuring George Lesniak of Autotel discussing FCA’s Secure Gateway. Click here for more information.
• Organizers of the Autopromotec trade show plan to host a digital expo and conference Dec. 10 titled Futurmotive, where companies and experts from around the globe can exchange ideas, projects and visions for the future of mobility. The goal of the event is to promote networking and interaction between various players in the automotive and new technology industries. Click here to find out more about Futurmotive.