Archive | January, 2012

ANDREW PAGE BUILDS DISTRIBUTION CENTRE IN DERBYSHIRE

ANDREW PAGE BUILDS DISTRIBUTION CENTRE IN DERBYSHIRE

Andrew Page breaks ground in Derbyshire

Andrew Page breaks ground in Derbyshire

Andrew Page is breaking ground on its new National Distribution Centre in Derbyshire.

The 100,000 square foot site will support the company’s continued expansion plans, and will be built on the Markham Vale Business Centre site in Derbyshire.

Construction on the new site begins in February, with the company hoping it will be fully operational by the summer.

Andrew Page has seen a period of expansion and growth in recent months, the company currently has 62 branches nationwide, employing 1,600 people.

The site could open up as many as 120 jobs for the local community.

“Markham Vale is an ideal location for our national distribution facility”, said Andrew Page Managing Director Mark Roberts

“It will support our expansion plans and our aspirations as a leading supplier of quality parts and components to our growing list of trade customers.”

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FRANCHISES TO LOOSE £85 MILLION IN BUSINESS

FRANCHISES TO LOOSE £85 MILLION IN BUSINESS

Your business gets a market boost

Your business gets a market boost

Franchised dealers look set to loose over £85 million in business before 2013.

The latest report from Castrol Professional suggests that over the next two years franchised dealers will loose almost four percent of their current business. That lost business equates to £85.6 million.

Castrol says the primary reason for the shift in market share is a combination of weak new car sales and an increasing awareness of bargains in the independent sector.

Another factor, says Castrol, is that the number of cars on the road less than five years old will continue to decline. Therefore the profits franchises can make on these newer cars will also decrease.

The trend is nothing new to the aftermarket, and the independent sector has been gaining market share from franchised dealers for months.

Castrol’s Nigel Head said: “With franchised dealership aftersales revenue from cars under five years old set to shrink, customer retention will become even more important.”

Head commented that franchises need to work harder on their aftersales service to keep customers coming back.

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BOSCH BUYS SPX SERVICE SOLUTIONS

BOSCH BUYS SPX SERVICE SOLUTIONS

Bosch Automotive Aftermarket is in the final stages of buying a specialist tools developer in the US for $1.15 billion.

SPX Corporation, based in Michigan manufactures and sells diagnostic and service tools, workshop equipment and software for the automotive aftermarket.

The purchase is the largest in the history of the Bosch Automotive Aftermarket division.

Bosch hopes that the acquisition of SPX Service Solutions will make it one of the leading providers of diagnostic solutions in the global aftermarket.

Although it is still subject to normal closing conditions and approval from the authorities, the sale is expected to be completed within the next few months.

President of the Bosch Automotive Aftermarket Division Robert Hanser said: “The acquisition will allow us to considerably expand our market presence in the diagnostics business, particularly in North America. In addition, we will strengthen our position in Asia Pacific and Europe, especially in our diagnostics business with automakers.”

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MOT horror stories – keep them coming!

We all love a good horror story, and when it comes to MOT horrors they’re something we can use in our lobbying efforts, too.

If you’ve read the latest issues of CAT then you’ll know we’re in full support of any efforts to stop impending changes to the MOT test schedule.

One business I’ve spoken to recently  said that while a 4-2-2 system might save customers money in the short term, the government will face rising costs as the numbers of accidents and even deaths on UK roads spirals out of control.

The IAAF is calling for evidence of MOT ‘horror stories’ to use in its lobbying efforts with MPs, and CAT wants to help.

We need your pictures of MOT horrors, and your stories of the state of some of the vehicles presented for MOT tests.

CAT has been getting a steady flow of your pictures, but we always need more so keep them coming!

Here’s one sent in by ABP Motorsport Manager Chris Meredith.

We need your MOT horror pictures

We need your MOT horror pictures

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BEN LAUNCHES AUTOJOBS FINDER

BEN LAUNCHES AUTOJOBS FINDER

The new section of BEN's website is free to use

The new section of BEN's website is free to use

The automotive industry charity BEN has launched an online job finder for the motor trade.

Embedded into the existing BEN website, the Autojobs section helps employers and jobseekers fill their employment needs.

Employers can post an unlimited number of jobs on the site free of charge, and it’s also free for jobseekers to view available jobs.

BEN’s Head of Marketing Ray Diggins said: “As a not-for-profit charity, BEN is pleased to make this service available as a no-cost service. BEN Autojobs is simple and easy to use and already some of the industry’s biggest names are using the site.”

Employers and jobseekers can access the new section here.

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MOTOR CODES “GARAGE OF THE YEAR” COMPETITION OPENS

MOTOR CODES “GARAGE OF THE YEAR” COMPETITION OPENS

Motor Codes has relaunched it’s ‘Garage of the Year’ competition for 2012.

Pre-registration for the competition is now open, ahead of voting which opens on the 24th February.

The competition is free to enter and is open to all garages and workshops in the UK. That includes independents, franchises and fast-fitters, the aim of the competition is to find the UK’s favourite garage.

The competition has been running for a number of years, with Motor Codes setting out to find the best garages in the UK. This year the competition has been revamped to allow separate award streams for larger and smaller workshops. That means a garage with five technicians stands just as much chance of winning as a franchise with 50!

Motor Codes is hoping more workshops than ever before will be taking part this year. The garage code recently won OFT approval in the UK, a big business benefit to its 6,500 members.

Motor Codes Managing Director Chris Mason said: “Since the last competition, we have received fantastic feedback from many garages about the increased business the campaign has driven.  The support from Havoline and the broader award categories will help us make an even bigger impression on the public about the quality of service from Motor Codes garages.”

As well as the chance to generate some fantastic local PR,  a prize fund is also on offer that includes Snap-on vouchers as well as Land Rover and Porsche driving experiences.  As an incentive to customers for taking the time to vote, tickets for this year’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone are up for grabs.

Interested garages can register to take part in the competition on the Motor Codes website.

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Retailers can polish up Autoglym sales

Autoglym's new Super Resin Polish

Autoglym's new Super Resin Polish

Autoglym has launched a new formulation of one of its best selling products – the Super Resin Polish.

Spearheading a corporate rebranding by the car care giant, Autoglym’s polish is promised to impart an unprecedented level of shine for customers. Autoglym says its formula has been in development for more than two years, and that the Super Resin Polish outperforms its rivals.

Having invested heavily in its R&D lab in Letchworth, Hertfordshire Autoglym set its technicians to work creating a new and improved formula to bear the Super Resin Polish title.

The new polish is available now, pried at £10.50 for 325ml, £12.50 for 500ml and £15.99 for one litre bottles. For a limited time customers also get a free Autoglym finishing cloth to help get the best shine.

Autogylm's Evolution

Autogylm's Evolution

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Stop/start is moving forward into the aftermarket

Bosch has produced its five millionth stop/start starter

Bosch has produced its five millionth stop/start starter

If you’ve read this month’s CAT cover to cover you’ll know all about stop/start technology.

January’s strategy feature on batteries mentioned that just 40 percent of independent workshops said they were happy to deal with stop/start and the associated AGM battery technology.

That’s a shocking statistic, and one that’s thrown into a harsh light by news from Bosch which says production of stop/start units is now struggling to cope with demand.

Bosch has celebrated producing its five millionth stop/start starter motor at its Hildesheim production facility, as demand for the technology continues to grow.

Bosch also makes a bold prediction – the company expects every second new car in Europe to have stop/start technology fitted by 2013.

Fortunately, vehicles fitted with stop/start are only now starting to filter into the aftermarket. But time is still running out to be completely prepared for a mass influx of these cars. Perhaps it’s time more workshops took note of this technology?

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A1 scoops retailer award

The A1 Motor Stores chain has scooped a “retailer of the year” award from SPAX.

The car accessory retailer chain won the”multi-site retailer of the year” award because of its impressive sales of SPAX product, coupled with its levels of customer satisfaction.

SPAX is a suspension component supplier which has been manufacturing suspension systems in the UK for 50 years. The manufacturer has been working with the A1 group for the past 15 years.

MD of SPAX Frank Michaux said: “We are very pleased to have presented this award to A1. A Dealer of the Year award is not easy to obtain and SPAX spends considerable time and effort before deciding upon them. This award recognises all the hard work, professionalism and focus that A1 have shown during a year that has been hard to get sales.

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SKILLAUTO 2012 NOW OPEN

SKILLAUTO 2012 NOW OPEN

The search is on to find the best automotive technicians

The search is on to find the best automotive technicians

The search is on to find the best automotive technicians in the UK.

The SkillAuto competition has opened its doors to entries for 2012. Entrants must have had no more than three years experience in the automotive sector, and must have a passion to be the best in the business.

Those technicians wishing to enter the competition can do so via the website, here. Entrants are required to set up their own online profiles through which the IMI will keep entrants apprised of important information and updates.

The first stage of the competition is an online test, which runs through to the 15th March. After that time entrants will be invited to partipate in live practical heats around the country. Regional champions will then find themselves battling for the SkillAuto crown at the Skills Festival event in October.

The competitions form part of the WorldSkills UK national competitions, in partnership with The National Apprenticeship Service. The competition is designed to test competence and recognise excellence in the application of the latest advancements in technology within the automotive sector.

David Massie, Project Manager for SkillAuto at the IMI said: “The retail motor industry produces some of the most enthusiastic and talented young people in our workforce today. With a passion for the job they do and the capacity to take on board the rapidly changing technological developments, materials and procedures, SkillAuto competitions allow them to let friends, workmates, relatives and employers see just how good they are in their chosen profession.”


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