Corporate News (13)
Safelite® Group has reached an agreement to acquire Boston-based Giant Glass, effective December 31, 2012.
Owned and operated by Dennis Drinkwater and Lance Cramer since 1978, Giant Glass includes 54 employees; 30 mobile vans; and five locations in the Boston area: Lawrence, North Andover, Peabody, Weymouth, and Worcester.
“I am proud of the company that my business partner Lance and I have built,” Drinkwater said. “We have a strong customer base and excellent employees and we wanted both of them to be well taken care of in the future. We trust that Safelite® will take care of them both.”
The acquisition is the continuation of Safelite AutoGlass’s mission to profitably grow in the U.S. and to become the customer’s “natural choice” for vehicle glass repair and replacement services. Giant Glass is a well-respected company with a prominent vehicle glass replacement brand in the greater Boston area. Giant’s geographic locations and brand recognition made it highly attractive to Safelite AutoGlass®.
A leading figure in the Boston community, Drinkwater and his business partner Cramer will remain working for Safelite®. They felt finding a new home for their employees with a company like Safelite® was a strong cultural fit as both companies focus on customer care.
“While much of our growth has come organically from expanding the company’s existing sales and profit base, we’ve also had various strategic, targeted acquisitions in the last several years,” said Tom Feeney, president and CEO of Safelite® Group. “We expect that Giant Glass’s clients, customers, business partners and employees will benefit from our commitment to be the leader in the vehicle glass industry.”
Safelite® Group is a subsidiary of Belron®, the world’s largest and most successful retail vehicle glass repair and replacement company. Belron® operates in 34 countries.
Chief Automotive Technologies has donated a new frame rack valued at $50,000 to the Operation Comfort Automotivation program for wounded U.S. military service members. Chief distributor English Collision Equipment, Inc. installed the rack at no charge.
To view a PDF of this article please click HERE.
“We are honored to have the opportunity to help these wounded warriors recover from the injuries they sustained while defending and protecting our country,” explains Mike Cranfill, vice president of collision for Chief’s parent company, Vehicle Service Group (VSG). “It is our hope that this equipment will aid in their rehabilitation and perhaps even ignite an interest in joining the collision repair industry once they are discharged.”
Operation Comfort is a non-profit, philanthropic organization focused on helping service members from all branches of the U.S. military who were wounded in Afghanistan and Iraq and are rehabilitating at Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC) in San Antonio, Texas. Depending on the severity of their injuries, these men and women will stay at BAMC from one to four years or longer.
Operation Comfort provides financial assistance to service members and their families, helps refurbish and equip waiting rooms at the medical center, and offers a number of rehabilitative and therapeutic programs in non-clinical environments. These programs include hand cycling, sled ice hockey, amputee surfing, softball, river rafting and Automotivation.
CARSTAR Locations Expand in Texas, Washington, Missouri and New Mexico
More than 250 CARSTAR Stores around the Country
This spring and summer, seven independent collision centers around the country joined CARSTAR Auto Body Repair, which now has approximately 400 stores in the United States and Canada.
The new CARSTAR franchisees expect to benefit from the CARSTAR Management System, which provides resources to improve key business metrics such as cycle time, participation in CARSTAR’s 17 corporately managed DRP programs, and improved purchasing power from 44 corporately managed purchasing programs.
The seven newest members of the CARSTAR Nation include:
· Premier Collision CARSTAR in Tacoma, WA
· Bailey's CARSTAR Auto Body & Glass in Poplar Bluff, MO
· Miller's CARSTAR Collision in Houston, TX
· CARSTAR Collision Pros in San Antonio, TX
· ProCare CARSTAR Northeast in San Antonio, TX
· ProCare CARSTAR Southside in San Antonio, TX
· Galles CARSTAR Collision Repair in Albuquerque, NM
GARMAT USA announced the winners of their 2011 Sharp Shooter Contest on October 21. The contest which started in early September, was designed to recognize quality paint techs and shop owners that use Garmat equipment. Judging was based on the shop owner and paint tech's dedication to providing quality paint jobs, superior customer service, attention to safety and overall equipment knowledge. Additional questions included an inquiry on how Garmat could improve their Garmat experience with product improvements.
The Grand Prize Winner, Art Smith won a trip for two to SEMA 2011, he said this will be the first time he has ever been to SEMA, and he is excited to attend. His story can be found on the Garmat Facebook page. In addition to the grand prize 7 finalists received leather jackets for both the tech and body shop owner and every entrant was awarded a Garmat Sharp Shooter cap.
PPG’s most recent MVP conference, held last month in New Orleans, was conducted with the theme: “Reveal the Power of Performance.” The conference focused on how collision centers can maximize overall performance and profitability despite the current economic climate.
The three-day conference at the Sheraton New Orleans Hotel included keynote speakers, breakout seminars, and workshops designed to assist collision centers in addressing market realities using effective, productive business strategies and practices.
Automotive News' writer Donna Harris has reported that the National Automobile Dealers Association's board of directors has chosen William Underriner as the group's 2012 chairman. The board also elected David Westcott 2012 vice chairman, placing him in line for the 2013 chairmanship. Both will take office in February, 2012.
Underriner, 59, is president and co-owner of Underriner Motors in Billings, Mont., which operates Honda, Hyundai, Buick and Volvo stores. He currently is NADA's vice chairman and its Montana director and has served three terms as NADA treasurer.
Westcott, 64, is president of David Westcott Buick-GMC-Suzuki in Burlington, N.C. He is NADA's North Carolina director and has been a new-car dealer since 1981.
Sherwin-Williams Automotive Finishes Announces A-Plus™ University Ecolean™ Level 1 Workshop in TorontoWritten by Staff
The next A-Plus™ EcoLean™ Level 1 workshop from Sherwin-Williams Automotive Finishes will be held June 22-23 in Toronto.
Sherwin-Williams’ exclusive EcoLean Level 1 workshops are designed to educate attendees about maximizing profitability by improving productivity and eliminating waste throughout their facilities. The program is offered to collision center owners and dealer managers from across Canada and the United States.
“Our EcoLean workshop curriculum is developed with collision shop operators in mind,” notes Bob Leibel, Director of Sales and Operations, Canada for Sherwin-Williams Automotive Finishes. “We aim to give them a comprehensive look of how they can build a lean culture in their shop from the ground up.”
During the upcoming Toronto EcoLean Level 1 workshop attendees will learn practical processes and useful tips on lean production’s practical application in collision repair and methods to make their collision shops more efficient, productive and profitable.
A Los Angeles-based private equity firm has acquired Greenville-based Sage Automotive Interiors, which makes cloth for seating, door panels and headliners for automotive manufacturers. It has offices and production plants in the U.S., Brazil, the United Kingdom, China, Korea and Japan. The Gores Group, which has committed equity capital of more than $4 billion, announced the acquisition on May 9. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Sage was formed in September 2009 by former Spartanburg-based Milliken & Co. executives Dirk Pieper and Brian McSharry and the investment firm Azalea Capital, LLC.
For information, visit: www.sageautomotiveinteriors.com.
PPG Industries (NYSE:PPG) recently announced the following executive assignments, effective May 1:
- Gary Danowski, vice president, flat glass, has been named vice president, automotive refinish, EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), based at the Rolle, Switzerland, headquarters of PPG Europe and reporting to John Outcalt, vice president, automotive refinish.
- Richard A. Beuke, vice president, silicas, has been named vice president, flat glass, based at the flat glass business and discovery center in Harmar, Pa., and reporting to J. Rich Alexander, executive vice president, Performance Coatings and Glass.
- Kevin D. Braun, general manager, architectural coatings, ANZ (Australia and New Zealand), has been named general manager, silica products, based at the Monroeville, Pa., chemicals center and reporting to Richard C. Elias, senior vice president, Optical and Specialty Materials.
- Johann (John) F. Kolling, director, U.S. taxes, has been named vice president, tax administration, based at the Pittsburgh global headquarters and reporting to Robert J. Dellinger, senior vice president, finance and chief financial officer.
To read full announcement see PPG newsoom HERE
ALLDATA LLC announced an expansion to the national account agreement with Fix Auto USA, making ALLDATA Collision(SM) S3500 the preferred provider of OEM repair information to Fix Auto USA members. As part of this agreement, Fix Auto USA members will also have the ability to incorporate ALLDATA Collision S3500's Estimate Integration, which will give member shops the ability to access OEM repair information while building the estimate.
ALLDATA Collision S3500, a comprehensive online database of both OEM mechanical and collision repair information, was developed to meet market demand in the collision industry. It satisfies the industry's long-time need for accurate and affordable vehicle-specific collision repair information. Just as ALLDATA(R) Repair(SM) S3000 meets the needs of mechanical repair shops, ALLDATA Collision S3500 has become an industry standard for collision professionals.
In addition to delivering vehicle-specific collision repair information, ALLDATA Collision S3500 has been enhanced to integrate OEM repair information directly into collision estimates. Estimate Integration works with the three major estimating systems to offer shops detailed OEM repair information specific to the vehicle and procedure, generating accurate repair plans the first time. With Estimate Integration, Fix Auto USA members can properly plan a repair to include any sublet time, ensure they have the proper tools and equipment as they write the estimate, and improve overall productivity in the front and the back of the shop.
"ALLDATA Collision S3500 allows collision repair facilities to repair vehicles to original equipment manufacturer standards," said Wayne Mitchell, ALLDATA Director of Sales and Operations. "By offering ALLDATA Collision S3500 to its members, Fix Auto USA can help its members cut cycle times, reduce supplements and provide proper documentation to consumers and insurers. We are thrilled that Fix Auto is using ALLDATA Collision S3500 to help their members increase their overall profitability."
Fix Auto USA Director of Membership, John Bosin added, "ALLDATA is a clear choice for our members' electronic repair information needs. I am not surprised that ALLDATA has reached the 80,000 subscriber milestone, and I am sure they will be adding more. Fix Auto USA is looking forward to expanding our relationship with ALLDATA."
A federal appeals court says DuPont Co. must defend itself against claims that it has monopolized the market for high-strength synthetic fibers used in products such as Kevlar body armor.
A three-judge panel of the Fourth Circuit court ruled late last week that a federal judge erred in dismissing a counterclaim filed in a trade secrets lawsuit that DuPont brought against Korean competitor Kolon Industries.The appeals court said Kolon had plausibly alleged monopolization and attempted monopolization by DuPont.
Last year, former DuPont employee Michael Mitchell was sentenced to prison after pleading guilty to theft of trade secrets and obstruction of justice.
Mitchell left DuPont in early 2006 and formed his own aramid fiber consulting business. He was accused of sending an e-mail with DuPont proprietary information to Kolon.