Quick Hits …
(A few short items to get us started this week)
From Service Executive …
Monro Reports Strongest Comps In More Than 30 Quarters
The 3.2-percent comp-store sales gain marked the highest quarterly comp increase since the third quarter of fiscal 2011. It’s also worth noting that Monro has now reported three consecutive quarters of positive comps for the first time since fiscal 2011.
From Service Executive …
CarAdvise Is Now Uber Pro’s Exclusive Repair, Maintenance Partner
On Nov. 1, Uber launched a new program in eight U.S. cities with CarAdvise, a vehicle repair and maintenance technology platform. The partnership is designed to make car care more cost-effective and convenient for the rideshare company’s 1 million driver partners.
From Service Executive …
AAA Offering Free Lyft Rides To/From Shops In Select Markets
Until recently, AAA has offered car care customers complimentary shuttle rides to their destination. Now, with Lyft’s concierge platform, select AAA shops can schedule complimentary Lyft rides for customers traveling to or from these shops.
From Service Executive …
AAA: New Vehicle Tech Doubles Collision Repair Bills
Even minor incidents that cause damage to this technology found behind windshields, bumpers and door mirrors can add as much as $3,000 in extra repair costs.
From Service Executive …
Chief To Rep Full Line Of Celette Equipment In The Americas, China
This expands on a heavy-duty product distribution agreement the companies reached in April.
Uni-Select Honors Top Canadian Suppliers
Uni-Select Inc. on Oct. 31 presented its Canadian Supplier Awards at its VIP Supplier Awards Event in Las Vegas. The Diamond Award, Uni-Select’s top supplier honor, went to PPG Canada. The prize recognizes dependable and detail-oriented service and providing the best support to Uni-Select customers, including quality sales tools, fill rate, lead time, inventory management, training, tech support and manpower support.
The following Golden Ally awards were presented in recognition of sales and marketing achievements …
• Tenneco Inc. received the Golden Ally award for sales tools for independent jobbers and installers.
• Shell Canada Products took home the Golden Ally honor for marketing campaign of the year.
• Gates Canada received the Golden Ally award for training and technical support.
Uni-Select’s Tech-Savvy Award – New Technology went to Blue Streak Hygrade Motor Products.
The following Achiever Awards were presented to suppliers whose sales growth performance was the highest in their respective categories …
• Wilson Auto Electric for automotive parts.
• AkzoNobel Coatings for paint and body equipment.
• SureWerx for tools and equipment.
As Uni-Select celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2018, special recognition went to 11 suppliers that have been partners since the company’s beginning. They are …
• Docap Distribution Inc.
• Federal-Mogul Motorparts
• Valvoline Canada
• Tenneco Inc.
• Mann+Hummel Filtration Technology Canada
• the 3M Canada Co.
• Exide Technologies Canada Corp.
• Kleen-Flo Tumbler Industries
• Phillips & Temro Industries
• SKF Canada Limited
• PPG Canada
Advance Completes Rollout Of New Pro Website
Advance Auto Parts has completed the nationwide rollout of its MyAdvance website. The site was designed with feedback from professional customers and is meant to simplify the way they do business, from parts ordering to promotions to customer support, labor claims and other shop management solutions.
MyAdvance, which is mobile-friendly, features a collaboration network for automotive aftermarket professionals to interact online with Advance support staff. And, users have access to more than 30 business programs and services within the site.
The site also includes customizable dashboards based on a user’s role or job function, an “Expert Corner” with training and advice from industry leaders, and forums for customers to submit support requests or troubleshoot repair issues directly with Advance team members.
“The MyAdvance website improves the way professional customers interact with our team members, and enables them to interact digitally with Advance and among themselves in new ways,” said Walter Scott, Advance’s senior vice president of professional marketing and programs. “Through MyAdvance, our customers can access our robust cross-banner product assortment, as well as the best-in-class shop services and solutions we offer — all in one place, in a flexible and easy-to-use manner.”
For more information or to visit the MyAdvance portal, go to advancepro.com.
Turn 14 Opens New, Larger Nevada D.C.
Turn 14 Distribution (Horsham, PA) has opened a new 178,000-square-foot distribution center on Lear Boulevard in Reno, NV. The facility, which is currently operational, is larger than Turn 14’s previous Reno DC. This allows the performance parts distributor to offer expanded stock and product availability to customers in the western United States.
“At four times the size, operating six days a week, this new distribution center will service all states west of Colorado and will allow Turn 14 Distribution to deliver packages in two days or less,” said CEO Jon Pulli.
The new Reno DC complements existing Turn 14 facilities in Pennsylvania and Texas. This three-facility distribution network will allow the company to provide improved shipping times across the country, according to Turn 14.
MAT Holdings Hires New Traditional Sales VP
Brian White is now vice president of traditional sales at MAT Holdings. Prior to joining MAT Holdings, White owned B&L Management Consultants and worked for Stant USA Corp. as director of aftermarket, global business development manager and aftermarket national sales manager. He also worked in various roles for FCS Automotive International, Dorset and KYB Americas.
P.E. Firm Buys SureWerx
The Riverside Co., a global private equity firm, has acquired SureWerx Inc., adding the company to Riverside’s specialty manufacturing and distribution industry specialization portfolio. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The seller was Penfund.
Co-headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia and Elgin, IL, SureWerx is a provider of proprietary, branded professional safety products, tools and equipment to the automotive aftermarket as well as the general industrial, construction and energy markets.
Its product line includes professional tools and abrasives, apparel, personal protective equipment, fall protection products, and lifting equipment. SureWerx markets its products in Canada under the Jet, Strongarm, ITC, Startech, Pioneer, Ranpro, PeakWorks and Sellstrom brands; and in the United States under the American Forge & Foundry, Pioneer, Ranpro, PeakWorks and Sellstrom brands.
The company has more than 3,500 customers across North America, according to Riverside.
The firm will partner with SureWerx’s existing management, led by CEO Chris Baby. Riverside operating partner Eric Nowlin is joining SureWerx as non-executive chairman of the board of directors. Nowlin is a former senior executive for W.W. Grainger in the United States and Canada.
Riverside’s investment is seen as an opportunity to further SureWerx’s growth strategy of adding complementary new products and delivering top service to its established network of distributors and end-users. “We are excited to partner with the SureWerx team to build upon its strong track record of growth, including through strategic acquisitions, while maintaining the company’s outstanding track record of service,” said Riverside partner Brad Roberts.
Baby said this move represents a significant milestone for SureWerx. “Riverside offers additional resources that will enable SureWerx to quickly leverage the platform that we have created,” he stated. “Our visions are aligned, and we will be working strategically to bring additional innovative products and solutions to enhance worker safety and productivity in all of our end markets.”
Golub Capital provided debt financing for the deal. Jones Day and KPMG were legal counsel and accounting advisor, respectively.
Chicago Pneumatic Hires Business Line Manager
Chicago Pneumatic, a manufacturer of professional automotive and industrial tools, has added Phil Warmbier as a business line manager at its U.S. headquarters in Rock Hill, SC. Warmbier will direct the North American sales teams servicing vehicle service and industrial clients.
He comes to Chicago Pneumatic with nearly 20 years of experience, including time as the director of sales and marketing for Enerpac and the senior sales manager and global aftermarket marketing manager at TRW Automotive.
LKQ Reports Record Total Revenue; Margins Remain Under Pressure
On the surface, Chicago-based LKQ Corp. had a strong third quarter, but margin pressure continued. Net income increased 9.9 percent to $134.48 million. On an adjusted basis, net income attributable to LKQ stockholders rose 26.9 percent to $177 million.
Total revenue increased by $656.58 million, or 26.7 percent, to a record $3.12 billion. Total parts and services revenue growth was 26.9 percent, with acquisition revenue growth of 23.2 percent and organic parts and services revenue up 4.3 percent.
And, while LKQ’s gross margin rose 25.1 percent to $1.20 billion, gross margin (as a percentage of total revenue) declined from 38.8 percent a year ago to 38.3 percent for the three months ended Sept. 30, 2018.
NORTH AMERICA … North American parts and services revenue grew 5.5 percent to $1.11 billion in the third quarter, with organic revenue up 5.2 percent. Segment EBITDA increased 0.9 percent to $154.05 million; however, segment EBITDA margin declined from 12.9 percent to 12.2 percent on a year-over-year basis.
“The new battery distribution agreement with FCA contributed about 150 basis points to the organic growth, though it comes with a lower margin structure, as we essentially just get a service fee,” President and CEO Nick Zarcone told analysts on the company’s Oct. 25 quarterly report conference call.
“All said, we continue to perform well in North America, especially when you consider that — according to CCC Information Services — collision- and liability-related auto claims on a national basis were up only 0.3 percent in the third quarter of 2018 compared to last year and up only 0.4 percent on a year-to-date basis,” Zarcone said.
“As was the case in the first half of the year, there continues to be meaningful variances in growth rates across the geographic regions of North America, with key markets — such as New York, California, Pennsylvania, Florida and Michigan — each down low- to mid-single digits,” he stated. “We believe the significant outperformance in our growth relative to the CCC data for repairable claims is due to the continued increase in the number of vehicles in our collision sweet spot — that being model years three to 10 years old — and continued market share gains.”
Zarcone added that organic growth for aftermarket parts continued to outpace that of salvaged parts.
“We believe there are more margin improvement opportunities, and we are not done,” Zarcone told analysts. “I’m very proud of our North American team, and how diligently and aggressively they are working to offset inflationary pressures, which we anticipate will be with us for the foreseeable future.”
EUROPE … LKQ’s European parts and service revenue rose 53.7 percent to $1.46 billion, with organic revenue up 2 percent. Segment EBITDA increased 63.1 percent to $129.36 million, and segment EBITDA margin grew from 8.3 percent to 8.8 percent on a year-over-year basis.
According to management, the 54.7-percent spike in revenue came primarily from the acquisition of Stahlgruber, while the 2-percent organic revenue growth reflected a sequential pullback from the second quarter of 2018.
Zarcone told analysts that — while management anticipated organic revenue growth in Europe to decline from the strong levels seen in the second quarter — the division’s performance in the third quarter was a bit below expectations. He added that the slightly lower organic growth came from several factors, including …
• Soft economic growth in markets experiencing political instability, such as Italy and the United Kingdom.
• Unseasonably warm weather throughout most of Europe during the quarter.
• The decision to not submit to price-cutting pressure from competitors.
“That said, there were several positive longer-term developments during the quarter. For example, in the U.K., our depth of inventory, national footprint and service levels — owing to the T2 investment — have enabled us to continue winning national account business, evidenced by several recent wins …,” Zarcone stated. “The new contracts will have little impact on our 2018 results, and the primary benefits are expected next year.”
He added that Stahlgruber is performing consistent with management’s expectations.
SPECIALTY … Specialty revenue increased 18 percent to $388.87 million, with organic revenue up 8 percent. Segment EBITDA rose 22.3 percent to $42.94 million, and segment EBITDA margin grew from 10.6 percent to 11 percent on a year-over-year basis.
Management pegged the higher-than-anticipated organic growth to increased customer penetration and an expanded exclusive brands offering, as well as increased RV parts demand, positive U.S. economic conditions, strong consumer spending, and continued favorable light truck and SUV sales trends.
CFO Varun Laroyia told analysts on the call that the Warn Industries business performed well, while the rest of the Specialty segment generated an 8-percent organic revenue growth rate for the quarter, which Laroyia called “a nice rebound from the lower rate that we experienced in the first half.”
ACQUISITIONS & DIVESTITURES … In August, the company finalized the sale of the Andrew Page branches that antitrust authorities required LKQ to divest. Meanwhile, LKQ continues to integrate and rationalize the remaining 77 Andrew Page branches.
Additionally, the entire Andrew Page branch network is now being replenished out of LKQ’s T2 distribution facility, and Andrew Page’s former national distribution center has been vacated and returned to the landlord.
During the third quarter, LKQ opened seven new branches in eastern Europe and acquired three wholesale businesses in Europe.
GUIDANCE … Management has reduced the upper end of its full-year organic parts and service revenue guidance from a range of 4.5 percent to 5.5 percent (previous expectation) to 4.5 percent to 5.0 percent (new projection).
The company also lowered its full-year guidance for net income from continuing operations attributable to LKQ shareholders. Management had expected between $602 million and $627 million in net income. It is now calling for between $565 million and $585 million.
“The updated guidance reflects the reality that our initiatives to deliver sustained growth and increased profit margins are working, though offset by the continued cost headwinds impacting our industry,” Laroyia stated. “While the initial results of our actions are positive, we believe that these cost pressures will not abate in the near term, and have adjusted our guidance to address the economic headwinds related to freight, fuel, and wage inflation, and declining scrap prices.
“We are committed to protecting our margins, driving higher levels of free-cash flow conversion, and believe our actions will position us well for achieving higher levels of sustainable and profitable growth in the future.”
King Engine Bearings Moves To New U.S. HQ
King Engine Bearings has relocated its North American headquarters to a larger office building and warehouse on Okner Parkway in Livingston, NJ. The new location has about 50 percent more warehousing storage capacity than the previous location in nearby Cedar Grove.
The facility will serve as the base of operations for King USA’s executive offices, customer support call center, sales and accounting departments, and logistics.
It will help King maintain the widest range of engine bearings for import and domestic applications, new and old, and with extensive undersize options, said Limor Karpatkin, vice president of sales and marketing. “The new location enables us to keep growing and to inventory a deeper and wider range of products,” she said.
The relocation follows the expansion of King’s manufacturing facilities in Israel and coincides with “the unprecedented growth in engine bearings sales over the last few years,” according to a company statement. Much of this growth comes from an increased foothold in the worldwide race market, as well as further penetration of OE replacement markets, according to King.
Eaton Launches Aftermarket E-Commerce Website
The Eaton Vehicle Group has launched an aftermarket e-commerce website for its Performance Automotive Differential product portfolio. The new site, EatonPartsOnline.com, consolidates information from multiple locations into a single site and introduces a variety of product-related research tools. Additionally, customers who purchase directly from Eaton can place orders via a new business-to-business interface, as well as view current inventory, review order history, reprint invoices and track shipments.
Eaton plans to add product lines, tools and information to the website over time.
Unanswered Questions Surrounding Future Of NACE Automechanika
With questions regarding the future of NACE Automechanika as yet unanswered, the Automotive Service Association (ASA) has announced that the Annual MSO Symposium and the Technology Telematics Forum will now coincide with the Collision Industry Conference taking place July 24-25 in Indianapolis.
The symposium and forum were originally scheduled to take place during NACE Automechanika in 2019. However, the ASA board of directors elected to move the event this year to coincide with CIC, citing “pending changes surrounding the trade show.”
In an announcement dated Oct. 26, ASA said it will be working closely with Messe Frankfurt regarding the future direction of NACE Automechanika. Announcements are to be made “in the near future” regarding 2019, 2020 and beyond.
Bob Wills, ASA’s chairman-elect, acknowledged that there are many questions about the future of NACE Automechanika. “We are working very closely with our partners at Messe Frankfurt to make decisions as quickly as possible,” Wills is quoted as saying in the announcement. “We will make those details available as soon as possible. We recognize the needs and value derived from a trade show have shifted, and we are devising a plan that best addresses those changing needs for our members and the industry as a whole.”
University Of The Aftermarket Foundation Adds New Way To Reach Scholarship Prospects
The University of the Aftermarket Foundation has added a text message-based student prospect database to encourage more applications and help the foundation keep tabs on potential recipients.
Teachers and others who visit automotive schools can now tell students to text their name and email address to (720) 903-2206. The student will get a text reply and email with the scholarship website. The message also will urge them to apply before the March 31, 2019 deadline. Also, administrators can reach out and remind everyone in the database with one click, as they do for students with incomplete applications.
In 2019, Pete Kornafel and Danielle Sonnefeld will administer the overall scholarship program.
At AAPEX last week, the University of the Aftermarket Foundation provided the following details on 2018 scholarships …
• Completed scholarship applications totaled 635. Nearly half of those (302) led to scholarship awards totaling $450,100 across all donor associations.
• Five students received three awards from their one application, and 49 students received two awards. Fourteen scholarships were awarded to veterans. Three percent of University of the Aftermarket Foundation awards went to “special case” recipients with lower high school GPAs but compelling stories about their experience after high school.
• The largest award — a $10,000 Women in Auto Care scholarship — went to Christina Schneider, attending College of the Desert in California and majoring in Automotive Technology. She also received another $1,000 scholarship from CAWA.
• 65 percent of the scholarships went to students training to become technicians, including 145 awards to mechanical technician students, 11 to collision repair students, and 33 to diesel and heavy duty technician students.
• 16 percent went to students majoring in a four-year business, accounting, marketing or communications program.
• 11 percent went to four-year engineering students.
• 8 percent went to students who are undecided about a major or are planning a career outside the aftermarket. (Regional wholesaler associations view their scholarships as a member service, so they are open to giving an award to a son or daughter of an industry family, even if their planned major is non-automotive like education or nursing).
• Scholarships went to students attending more than 130 colleges, universities, community colleges and post-secondary vocational training schools. The most popular schools for scholarship recipients included: Universal Technical Institute (14), University of Northwestern Ohio (13), Auburn University (8), Lincoln College of Technology (6) and Northwood University (5).
University Of The Aftermarket Foundation Honors New Lifetime Trustees
At the AWDA Luncheon Oct. 29 in Las Vegas, the University of the Aftermarket Foundation recognized the National Pronto Association as a new gold lifetime trustee, a designation reserved for those donating $250,000 to $499,999 to the organization.
Recognized as new lifetime trustees were …
• The Genuine Parts Co.
• The MAM Software Group
• The Schwartz Family
• Women in Auto Care and
Lifetime trustee designation is reserved for those donating $100,000 to $249,999 to support the foundation’s mission of providing scholarships and educational opportunities to the next generation of industry leaders.
AASA’s lifetime trustee donation will be recognized as the Steve Handschuh Educational Fund to honor the retiring president and CEO of MEMA for his long, successful aftermarket career.
AASA To Debut New Channel Excellence Award
AASA — in partnership with Epicor Software Corp. — has introduced a new industry award, the AASA Channel Excellence Award, which will be presented at the 2019 AASA Vision Conference on April 3 in Dearborn, MI. The association is establishing this recognition to honor the innovation and collaboration between suppliers and channel partners that drives aftermarket growth.
“Suppliers are innovators and the drivers of new technologies in the aftermarket,” AASA vice president Chris Gardner said, “but greater achievements are possible when suppliers and channel partners develop new products and new ways of getting the right parts to the right places at the right times.”
Additional information about the AASA Channel Excellence Award — and about this year’s Vision Conference — will be announced soon, according to the association.
AASA Marketing Executives Council Installs 2019 Executive Committee
Kevin Judge, vice president of NTN Bearing, has been installed as the chairman of the AASA Marketing Executives Council (MEC). New officers are Dan Caciolo, head of product management at Continental, and Dan Muramoto, marketing manager for Denso. Continuing as MEC officers are Carolyn Wiczynski, director of sales – North America for Meyle, and Jason Davis, director of national accounts at Dorman Products.
SEMA To NHTSA: Act On Replica Car Law, Or See Us In Court
SEMA has informed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that the association is prepared to challenge the agency in court if NHTSA fails to take immediate action to implement a low-volume replica car law. Under the 2015 law, small automakers — 5,000 or fewer vehicles produced globally — may sell as many as 325 turn-key replica cars a year in the United States.
According to SEMA, NHTSA had until Dec. 4, 2016 to establish a process for companies to register with the agency and to issue any necessary regulation to implement the law. The agency has reportedly taken no regulatory action.
“NHTSA’s continued delays have frustrated replica car companies and consumers,” said SEMA president and CEO Chris Kersting. “The replica car provision was designed to be easy for NHTSA to implement, as it simply extends the common-sense approach to overseeing kit-car production that the agency has employed for decades.”
SEMA has stated that the delay is creating financial hardships for small businesses committed to the program, as replica car companies began making investments in new facilities, equipment, and supplies based on the one-year timeline to implement the law.
The Greensheet reached out to NHTSA for comment but received no reply prior to publication.
Auto Pride Enhances Service Experts Program, Adds IT Initiatives
Auto Pride benefit options now include an enhanced Auto Service Experts program, as well as new IT initiatives. The Automotive Distribution Network introduced the updates to 50 Auto Pride members in Las Vegas for Industry Week.
For 2019, the Auto Service Experts platinum level now includes …
• A $100 gift card for every $250 in claimed rebates.
• Double the number of trip winners for the Repair America Sweepstakes.
• Promotional material.
• The choice of a subscription to Identifix Direct-Hit, Spectrio or LoyaltyTrac, or four additional Mile 1 labor warranty claims.
The standard Auto Service Experts program now includes a $50 gift card for every $250 claimed in rebates and additional promotional material.
The IT initiatives now available to AutoPride members include Sophio, The Network’s cloud-based technology for retail e-commerce. Users can …
• Sell direct to consumers from their company’s branded website or an alias-branded website.
• Sell on eBay, Amazon and other marketplaces.
• Offer drop-ship fulfillment to members, non-members, e-tailers and Network national accounts.
• Add Sophio’s Virtual Inventory to a WebShop B2B site to increase sales to professional installers.
• Build a multi-channel e-commerce strategy to increase revenue outside their geographic market area.
Stratus, an enterprise solution powered by Epicor, also was introduced. Users can …
• Manage order activity.
• View real-time inventory, pick parts from any location and balance overstock.
• Serve customers targeted pricing to increase profit.
• Automate routine processes to manage by exception.
• Quickly design queries with drill-down capabilities and sharing across multiple dashboards.
Stratus integrates with WebShop, Network Connect, Network Intelligence and other programs.
Pep Boys Supports Vehicle Giveaway Program For Military Families
Pep Boys has become an affiliate of Progressive Corp.’s “Keys to Progress” program, which this week will donate more than 100 refurbished vehicles to U.S. Armed Forces veterans and their families. The program provides military families with reliable transportation to help them access medical care, employment services and other forms of support.
Progressive works with National Auto Body Council-member body shops and other “Keys to Progress” program affiliates to put the refurbished vehicles in the hands of deserving veterans. Pep Boys will support each recipient with a free, one-year routine vehicle maintenance package available at any of Pep Boys’ locations across the country.
Commercial Vehicle Battery Maker Trojan Being Acquired
C&D Technologies, a KPS Capital Partners portfolio company, has reached a deal to acquire the Trojan Battery Co. Financial terms of the proposed transaction were not disclosed. The move would combine two battery manufacturers into an energy storage provider with over $1 billion in revenue and eight manufacturing facilities.
Trojan Battery is a manufacturer of deep-cycle energy storage products and a battery technology company. Its batteries provide power for a wide variety of motive and stationary applications, including heavy duty trucks. The company has operations in California and Georgia.
Blue Bell, PA-based C&D manufactures, engineers, supplies and services fully integrated reserve power systems for regulating and monitoring power flow and providing backup power. The company operates in the utility, telecommunications, uninterruptible power supply, cable, broadband and renewable energy markets. It has four manufacturing facilities located in the United States, Mexico and China.
“Given C&D and Trojan’s complementary portfolios of global manufacturing plants, markets and products, this is a highly compelling combination with tremendous strategic value and an exciting multi-segment growth opportunity,” Armand Lauzon, CEO of C&D, said in an announcement dated Nov. 6. “We are committed to preserving everything about C&D and Trojan that our respective loyal customers, suppliers and employees have come to expect over the years, while also using our larger scale and resources to take advantage of many exciting new opportunities.”
The transaction is expected to close in approximately 60 days.
A well respected leading automotive aftermarket manufacturer of Brake products is seeking a Catalog Manager to become a member of our Marketing team. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
Spectra Premium Industries, a leading North American Auto Parts Manufacturer, is seeking a highly qualified Business Development Manager to manage aftermarket parts sales throughout the Western United States. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
Alltech Automotive has multiple openings for Regional Sales Managers. We are looking for highly qualified candidates to cover North America. The Regional Sales Manager is a dedicated position, concentrating on leading and generating sales/awareness and support of new products, new programs and updates to the Alltech customer base. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
DC Battery Hub is looking for Rep Agencies across the U.S. and Canada. We have a complete line of Remanufactured and New Hybrid batteries. We offer 12, 36, and 60 (New) month warranty programs. … (more) … Click here to find out more.
AxleTech Announces New Electronics, Mechatronics Remanufacturing Capabilities
AxleTech International is extending its product offering with the introduction of complex electronics and mechatronics remanufacturing. The company’s foray into electronics and mechatronics remanufacturing is based on an expected “exponential growth” of electronics content in vehicles over the next five years.
“As autonomy, electrification and sustainable manufacturing become increasingly more important in the mobility sector, the industry will require experienced and knowledgeable complex electronics and mechatronics remanufacturing specialists,” said Raji El-Kassouf, director of business development – remanufacturing for AxleTech. “With this new program, AxleTech will be able to provide customers with a viable, cost-effective option for quality remanufactured electronics and mechatronics, as well as ensure the serviceability of these products and help manage lifecycle costs.”
To establish its new remanufacturing group, AxleTech hired a team of engineers, including Chief Engineer PT Muldoon, who has spent more than three decades working in the space. The team, based in Troy, MI, is responsible for technology development. The group was tasked with creating a line of proprietary testers to evaluate cores to determine what repairs are needed and if the repairs are successful.
AxleTech also has installed new software, hardware and facilities to remanufacture a wide range of products. As a result, the company says it has the capability to remanufacture any product with a circuit board and a plug, such as anti-lock braking modules and transmission control modules, hybrid electronic systems, electronic throttle valves, mass air sensors, and electronic braking systems.
This new remanufacturing capability will give AxleTech access to new OEM and Tier-1 customers, as well as select independent channel distributors. Down the road, the company’s Electric Vehicle Systems (EVS) customers also stand to benefit from this effort, as AxleTech EVS products also are slated for remanufacturing.
People Watching 11/8/18
• Mike Braun — the founder and CEO of Meyer Distributing and owner of Meyer Logistics — has been elected to the U.S. Senate, representing Indiana. He defeated the incumbent Sen. Joe Donnelly.
• David Mohr is now the president of PFC Brakes. Mohr was the vice president of product development for Performance Friction. His background also includes time as the vice president of OEM sales for Performance Friction.
• Philip Brown is now director of the commercial vehicle aftermarket, OES and industrial channels at Firestone Industrial Products. Brown, who has been with the company since 2014, previously was a strategic account executive. Prior to joining Firestone Industrial Products, he was a North American heavy duty national accounts executive for Veyance Technologies.
• Brian Hearing, vice president of research and development at BrakeAudit, is now a member of the Global Brake Safety Council.
• Steve McClellan, president of the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.’s Americas business unit, has been elected chairman of the U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA) board of directors. He is serving a two-year term starting Oct. 3, 2018.
News Briefs 11/8/18
• Bosch’s new Focus windshield wiper blade product line is now available at O’Reilly Auto Parts stores nationwide and on oreillyauto.com. The Focus line is intended to provide optimal night clarity and enhanced driver safety by reducing blur and glare, according to Bosch.
• Hot Wheels car care products will now be distributed through Keystone Automotive Operations.
• QA1 MOD Series coil-over shocks are now available at Summit Racing Equipment.
• Summit Racing Equipment and the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA) have announced a multi-year partnership extension of the IHRA Summit SuperSeries and IHRA Summit Team Finals programs. The Summit SuperSeries will return for an 18th consecutive year in 2019. The $200,000 program is the world championship for more than 8,000 IHRA member-track racers each season and held at nearly 100 IHRA-sanctioned member tracks.
• Sangsin has selected Evokat Premier from Illumaware to author and distribute ACES and PIES catalogs.
• Jerry & Keith’s Inc., a truck and trailer repair and parts distributor based in Bakersfield, CA, is celebrating its 50th anniversary. The family-owned business is a member of HDA Truck Pride.
• Pressure Systems International (PSI) is celebrating its 25th anniversary.
Event & Trade Show Briefs 11/8/18
• The deadline to register for the 2019 Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week (HDAW) One-on-One program is Friday, Nov. 9. One-on-one meeting selections will again be done online.
• The Latin Auto Parts Expo is combining with the Latin American & Caribbean Tyre Expo in 2019. The combined event will take place July 24-26 at the newly constructed Amador Convention Center in Panama. According to the expos’ organizer, the Latin Expo Group, the combined shows are expected to have more than 600 exhibitors and over 5,000 business visitors. For more information, visit latintyreexpo.com.
• The 2019 MEMA Legislative Summit will take place April 30 to May 1 in Washington, DC.
• The Auto Care Association Legislative Summit will take place Sept. 18-20 in conjunction with Fall Leadership Days in Washington, DC.
• The Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance has announced Washington, DC as the location for its Jackpot Convention to be held in the fall of 2021.
2018 Northwood Automotive Aftermarket Management Education Award Winners
At AAPEX last week, Northwood University recognized eight supporters of educational initiatives and learning within the automotive aftermarket. Automotive Aftermarket Management Education Award recipients have made noteworthy contributions to education, on any level, inside or outside of the industry. This year’s winners are …
• Michael Bonacci, marketing director for Hahn Automotive Warehouse,
• Georgianne Dickey, senior product and marketing communications manager at NTN Bearing Corp. of America,
• Tim Feddema, marketing manager for Automotive Parts Headquarters,
• Paul Fiore, senior director of government affairs for the Auto Care Association,
• Paul McCarthy, executive vice president of AASA and senior vice president of strategy at MEMA,
• Jim Merle, group publisher with Babcox Media,
• Vange Proimos, board member at APC Automotive Technologies, and
• Xuema “Robert” Zhu, global CEO of Advanced Innovative Technologies and WOHN Global Industries.
2018 SEMA Awards, Launch Pad Winners
The following were recognized at the annual SEMA Awards Banquet last week in Las Vegas …
• Person of the Year: Melanie White, president of Hellwig Products.
• GEN-III Innovator of the Year: Jon Pulli, CEO of Turn 14 Distribution.
• Rep Agency of the Year: Bob Cook Sales.
• Distributor of the Year: Turn 14 Distribution.
• Manufacturer of the Year: Aeromotive Inc.
• SEMA Launch Pad Winner: Matt Beenen of Builtright Industries for the Bedside Rack System.
2018 AAPEX Best Booth Award Winners
The following AAPEX exhibiting companies were recognized with Best Booth Awards last week in Las Vegas …
• Best of Show Award: Ullman Devices, booth 856.
• Best of Show Award: Gates Corp., booth 4038.
• Best 10 x 10 Booth – Level 1: Korea Ocean Biocluster, booth 7606.
• Best Linear 200 square feet or more Booth – Level 1: BG Automotive, booth 7638.
• Best Small Peninsula (under 800 square feet) – Level 1: the Zhejiang Master Injection System Co., booth 10046.
• Best 10 x 10 Booth – Level 2: BTS Industries, booth 4545.
• Best Linear 200 square feet or more Booth – Level 2: Ullman Devices, booth 856.
• Best Small Peninsula (under 800 square feet) – Level 2: Norma Group, booth 5546.
• Best Large Peninsula (over 800 square feet) – Both Levels: MYCHANIC, booth 1871.
• Best Small Island (under 800 square feet) – Both Levels: Sampa Otomotiv, booth 42015.
• Best Large Island (over 800 square feet) – Both Levels: Gates Corp., booth 4038.