Blog

PEOPLE NEWS: NEW CEO AT DIGRAPH AS SUKHBIR KAPOOR STEPS DOWN

CV factor chain Digraph has announced a change in its leadership, as Sukhbir Kapoor has announced his intention to step down as CEO, citing health considerations.

The Board of Directors have unanimously selected former MD James Rawson as chief executive officer with immediate effect. Kapoor will spend the next two months supporting the business.

READ: SUKHBIR APPOINTED CEO OF DIGRAPH

Kapoor joined Digraph from Euro Car Parts in 2018 and during his tenure the company has undergone rapid growth with the addition of eight new branches and one acquisition joining the original 14 sites.

READ: DIGRAPH ACQUIRES EUROPARTS OLDBURY

Kapoor said: “It has been a privilege to have been working for Digraph during this transformational phase of the company’s development and I’m certain that James will lead the business to even greater heights.”

Rawson said: “It’s great to be back with such a talented team of colleagues old and new. I would like to thank Sukhbir for his stewardship and assistance which will ensure a seamless transition.”

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, Latest News, NewsComments (0)

AAUK ACQUIRES WHITEHAVEN FACTOR

The British arm of Alliance Automotive Group, AAUK, has resumed it’s buying spree with the acquisition of Whitehaven-based A&B Autoparts Ltd.

The single-branch light vehicle factor was an existing member of GroupAuto and had been run by the Farragher family since 2002.

Terms of the deal have not yet been disclosed.

READ: AAG MAKES MAJOR ACQUISITION OF 150 BRANCH DISTRIBUTOR

READ: AUTOQUIP MIDLANDS TAKEN OVER BY AAUK

A&B Autoparts now owned by AAUK

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, Latest News, latest news, NewsComments (0)

AAG ACQUIRES MAJOR EUROPEAN DISTRIBUTOR

Alliance Automotive Group (AAG) has agreed to acquire Netherlands-based PartsPoint Group. 

PartsPoint Group, currently a subsidiary of family-owned AutoBinck, has activities in the Netherlands and Belgium. It operates a network of 150 branches under the network banners of Brezan, Staadegaard-TC and Dabeko. The company also serves 60 independent wholesalers through its national and regional distribution centres. It has annual revenues of approximately €300 million.

Jean-Jacques Lafont, CEO of AAG said “PartsPoint has a leading market position in the two key European markets of The Netherlands and Belgium markets which are contiguous to our existing operations. It is run by a superb management team which I am sure will develop further growth opportunities in its markets. We are pleased that the PartsPoint management team is committed to staying on board to lead the company into this next phase of its development”. 

Cor Baltus, CEO of PartsPoint said “We are grateful to AutoBinck which supported us during our rapid expansion. With their trust and confidence, we have been able to relaunch the business since 2013. We are pleased to become a part of one of the leading aftermarket groups in Europe which will enable us to continue to grow and to invest in marketing, IT and product development to service our customers even better in the years to come”. 

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions including the relevant regulatory approvals and consultation with unions. 

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Latest News, News, Retailer NewsComments (0)

CONSOLIDATION: OSRAM TO ACQUIRE RING AUTOMOTIVE

Lighting manufacturer Osram has agreed to acquire aftermarket brand Ring Automotive. Terms of the deal have not been disclosed and it is still subject to the usual approvals.

In a statement, both businesses feel that this combination will be ‘mutually beneficial’ and will result in many opportunities to complement each other’s offering to the automotive aftermarket.

George Skalski, Managing Director of Ring Automotive said, “We look forward to working alongside Osram and believe that the transaction is very positive news for all of our colleagues and customers. The acquisition secures continued investment in the business, which will support our future growth plans and our leading-edge product innovation.”

 

Deal is ‘mutually beneficial’

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Latest News, NewsComments (0)

MAKING TAX DIGITAL

Digital tax will be taxing

By Adam Bernstein 

By the end of March 2019, some one million UK businesses will need to have prepared for what many consider to be the biggest change for years in how they deal with HMRC. Despite what some may think, this has nothing to do with Brexit.

The changes, which will affect every single transaction a firm makes, come from what HMRC calls Making Tax Digital – MTD. While HMRC thinks it’s the answer to everyone’s tax problems, the reality is that life is about to become very complex for business.

The background

Jason Piper, senior manager for tax and business Law at the ACCA, an accounting body, says that MTD has been around five years since the then minister, David Gauke, announced bold plans for The Death Of The Tax Return, which became Making Tax Simple before finally settling on Making Tax Digital. Says Piper, “the underlying goal is to transform the whole UK tax system, both HMRC’s internal IT infrastructure and the way that taxpayers engage with it.”

It appears that by having taxpayers keep their records digitally, engaging with HMRC entirely online, everyone’s costs should be lowered, and avoidable errors will be minimised. But as Piper puts it, “as a utopian ideal the seamless transfer of information, with taxpayers able to see all their records in one place in real time, has clear attractions – but from the start, practical issues around the ability of taxpayers to adapt, especially in the suggested timescales reared their heads.” And there has been no shortage of commentators ready to remind HMRC of government’s record on large scale IT projects – MTD would be one of the biggest, and riskiest were it to go wrong, ever attempted.

Rollout

Problems with the rollout have been compounded by unprecedented political developments such as the snap election and the Brexit referendum – both delayed the ability of civil servants to consult with stakeholders.

The result is that the initial plans to force virtually all businesses to keep their records for profits taxes digitally from 2018 were abandoned; now all but the barest bones of MTD have been put on hold to free up resource for Brexit. Nevertheless, firms will have much to worry about from next April.

Impact

From April 2019 HMRC will have MTD in place for VAT for all businesses above the compulsory registration threshold of £85,000. Income and Corporation Tax will follow at some point.

Of course, as Piper notes, MTD won’t apply to those businesses not (yet) registered for VAT – “even if they do subsequently register for VAT, they’ll be outside of the regime until 2020. Unfortunately, that doesn’t necessarily mean they can relax.”

So those who are VAT registered need to prepare – now.

For VAT, MTD subtly alters how the online filing works and makes a huge change to how businesses prepare for that submission. HMRC’s existing web portal will close for MTD filers and instead they’ll need to use specialist software to create and submit their return.

“But the biggest, unprecedented, change,” explains Piper, “is in how much control HMRC’s processes will have over how you run your business. Under online filing, you submit your VAT return to HMRC in their prescribed digital format so it’s easy for them to process. But you’re in control of how the records are kept that help you work out the nine numbers you need for the return. Under MTD, it’s not just how the nine figures reach HMRC that’s legally regulated; it’s how they’re calculated, and the format (electronic) of the records that support it which is laid down in law.” In essence, he says that every transaction will need to be recorded digitally (so on a spreadsheet or in accounting software) and those records have to automatically drive the return calculation. If you’re caught up in MTD, you’ll need to be online aware, or have a very accommodating accountant.

Piper outlines two situations where businesses can carry on as usual (for the short to medium term at least). One is if you are registered voluntarily for VAT: “If your annual turnover is below the threshold then operating the MTD regime will be optional, and you can continue filing via the portal.” Turnover has to be below, and stay below, that £85,000 limit from April 2019 though – as soon as turnover goes above the limit MTD obligations become compulsory, permanently. This means that even if turnover falls later on the requirement to keep recording everything digitally will stand unless deregistering entirely from VAT. “Firms can,” adds Piper,” voluntarily waive that exemption and operate full MTD processes. As long as turnover stays below £85,000 they can withdraw that waiver and go back to paper/online filing, from the end of the quarter they’re in.”

All of this means an extra headache for businesses with turnover hovering around £85,000 – one big transaction that might trigger compulsory registration. The rules are a minefield here.

The other route to staying outside MTD, according to Piper, “is to qualify for one of the existing exemptions from online filing for those who are digitally excluded or on grounds of religious belief. HMRC have said they will publish guidance on this in November 2018 and expect to have the application process ready by January 2019, but we can use the regulations and what we know about the current position to make some predictions.”

Piper says that it’s a myth that taxpayers can get religious exemption just by telling HMRC they’re a member of a tiny sect that shuns technology. The bar to clear is incredibly high and involves proving that the individual’s entire life revolves around their beliefs.

The other exemption he points to – digital exclusion – “is likely to get a lot messier for HMRC and for taxpayers. “At the moment, around 4,000 taxpayers are exempt from online filing ‘by reason of age, disability or geographical location’. That means they either can’t use a computer to meet HMRC’s requirements, or even if they could, they can’t get reliably online because there’s no internet connection at their place of business. The same legal test will apply for MTD.”

However, historically HMRC has taken a hard line leaving many businesses who couldn’t file online themselves to pay an accountant to fulfil the digital obligations. But there the difference ends he says: “Filing the nine figures of the return isn’t that expensive; paying a professional adviser to maintain the digital record of every single transaction would be a different story though, and that’s what MTD would require. The stakes are much higher this time for small businesses, and we expect far more to need to apply for exemption because paying someone else to do what’s needed just isn’t economic.”

Crucially Piper says that there’s an “any other reason” catch-all term built into the regulations and it’s possible that the tax Tribunals “would include the economic impact on the business of shifting to digital in that – so if the disruption would effectively bankrupt a business, that could be grounds for exemption.” Put bluntly, if claiming exclusion as a sole trader then it’s just the trader’s own circumstances that matter. For a partnership though, every single partner needs to be excluded. If just one could maintain digital records and file online then the partnership would be expected to. For a company it’s likely to be even more complicated to assess.

Action

Piper says that the first step is to simply establish if HMRC expects MTD to apply, that is, the business is turning over more than £85,000 per year. “If so, start to prepare, or collect the evidence that you might not need to because you’ll be exempted.”

Next, if the business already uses an accounts software package then it will probably support MTD filing and record keeping – the key is to check without delay.

“If you don’t use any digital tools” says Piper, “then you’ll need to start, and quickly do your own research to find a suitable product.” He reckons that there will be an official HMRC tool, but government rules on commercial competition means that businesses might do better to search out resources that accountants use. Accountingweb.co.uk offers reviews on products.

Spreadsheets will still be fine for the basic record keeping Piper advises, “but you’ll still need access to a filing package as well, known as ‘bridging software’. In a variation on the current practice of phoning your accountant every three months with the nine figures, you could post them a USB stick, or email a spreadsheet with all your records (in the right format) once a quarter. Their software could do the rest, but it’s likely to cost more than the current equivalent.” Of course, doing this means that there’s scope for things to go wrong, and it will mean an accountant doing more which will be reflected in their bill.

The advice to those who think they might be, or should be, exempted, it to start gathering evidence. Once HMRC is accepting applications for exemption, get it in early taking advice from an accountant so that the application is correctly worded. And if rejected – appeal. Don’t ignore MTD as it’s not going away.

Posted in CAT Know-HowComments (0)

GOVERNMENT CONSULTING TO BAN OLD TYRES

The Department of Trade has agreed to begin consulting on various options to ban tyres which are over ten years old on buses, coaches, HGVs and minibuses, according to Tyre safety campaigning group Tyred.

The campaign group say that the government decision, announced on 26th February, is the result of seven years of lobbying and has called it a ‘significant breakthrough’ for campaign leader Frances Molloy, who lost her son Michael, aged 18, in a 2012 coach crash on the A3 in Surrey after the vehicle’s 19-and-a-half year-old tyre exploded. Driver Colin Daulby, 63, and Kerry Ogden, 23, were also killed.

Transport Minister Jesse Norman confirmed the government’s decision, stating he wanted ‘to pay tribute to Frances Molloy and her team at Tyred for their impressive campaign against older tyres on coaches and buses.’

Frances Molloy said: “I recently received a call from Jesse Norman and former Transport Minister Chris Grayling to say that the consultations will now take place with the next anticipated step being the acceptance and commencement of legislation making the ban Law.

“We are all very proud at Tyred to be able to effectively change the law in memory of Michael, Kerry and Colin,” she concluded.

 

Posted in Latest News, NewsComments (2)

TECDOC PATCH ALLOWS WEEKLY UPDATES

TecAlliance, developer of the well-known TecDoc electronic parts catalogue software, has announced an update to the system which will allow suppliers to update their product information on a weekly basis. Currently, only monthly updates are enabled.

TecAlliance say that the current platform will remain mostly unchanged, with users still able to use the DMM, web service and TAF 2.4 data structure as usual, and no extra tools are required. There is also no extra charge, and the weekly update option is a voluntary one, with suppliers still able to stick with monthly updates if they choose.

The update also allows suppliers to more quickly correct data errors on the catalogue, which ‘significantly raises the overall quality of the data held within the TecDoc catalogue,’ said Shaun Greasley, TecAlliance’s regional sales director CEE/GB/IE.

“The relentless globalisation of the industry is putting extra demands on parts brands, particularly for those growing into new sectors or rapidly increasing their product portfolio,” Greasley said.

“The project starts at the beginning of April, so we’d like to invite data suppliers to register their interest by sending notification of their brand/s with the relevant contact details, while we also encourage data users to let us know if it is their intention to use the weekly updates.”

 

Posted in Latest News, NewsComments (0)

BREXIT: ALIGNMENT SUPPLIER TRIPLES STOCK LEVELS

Four wheel alignment technology supplier Absolute Alignment has announced that it has tripled its stock levels over the past three months in preparation for Brexit.

The firm say that the stockpiling will ensure next-day delivery is unaffected throughout the spring season for all items featured on the Absolute Alignment website.

Chris Deal, Technical Director for Absolute Alignment, said: “It’s of great importance to us that our speed of service is not in any way impacted by Brexit and the uncertainties that may bring.”

Dear also specifically highlighted the importance of appropriate stock levels of its Bluetooth Pro wheel aligners, which is the firm’s most popular and fastest-selling product in the UK.

 

 

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Latest News, NewsComments (0)

DATA PROTECTION RULES: AVOID BEING FINED

Late last year, a motor industry employee was given a six-month prison sentence for accessing thousands of customer records containing personal data without permission, using his colleagues’ log-in details to access a software system that estimates the cost of vehicle repairs.

 

The UK’s data protection regulator, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), brought the prosecution under the Computer Misuse Act 1990. Most cases are usually prosecuted by the ICO under the Data Protection Act. However, in some cases, it can prosecute under other legislation—in this case section 1 of the Computer Misuse Act — to reflect the nature and extent of the offending and for the sentencing court to have a wider range of penalties available.

 

In this instance, Mustafa Kasim had accessed the records while employed at Nationwide Accident Repair Services and continued to do so after he started a new job at a different car repair organisation which used the same software system. Kasim pleaded guilty to a charge of securing unauthorised access to personal data between 13 January 2016 and 19 October 2016, at a hearing in September 2018 and was sentenced at Wood Green Crown Court.

 

Of course, as is well known, the law in this area changed when the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into force in the UK in May 2018. The GDPR governs how businesses (known as data controllers) handle the personal information of their customers and employees. It significantly strengthens the regulation of data controllers – providing the ICO with powers to impose substantial fines for non-compliance. It also provides individuals with an array of rights which consumers and employees can look to enforce via the courts.

 

The new law is, in part, intended to force a cultural change in how we think about and protect people’s personal information. It is also intended to bring the law up to date with advances in technology as well as the widespread use of internet-based applications and social media.

 

There are huge financial penalties available to the ICO for cases of non-compliance – with fines of up to 4% of a company’s annual global turnover for the preceding financial year or the equivalent of around £18 million – whichever is greater.

 

Some businesses have already adapted their systems and processes for the new law, however, many others will either still be in the process of making the required changes or will not have begun yet. Sadly, some may still be unaware that the law has changed. In any event, it is crucial to ensure that an organisation is compliant with the new law – particularly so that customer and employee data is handled safely and securely – reducing the risk of information being misused and the company’s reputation suffering as a result; the risk of being hit with a substantial fine from the ICO for non-compliance is reduced; and so that the risk of the company being sued by an individual or a group of individuals, who may have been adversely affected by a data breach, is also reduced.

 

On this it’s worth noting, as the BBC has reported, that supermarket Morrisons has been found vicariously liable for a data breach that saw thousands of its employees’ details posted online. Workers brought a claim against the company after an employee stole the data, including salary and bank details, of nearly 100,000 staff. While he was jailed for eight years in 2015 after being found guilty at Bradford Crown Court of fraud, securing unauthorised access to computer material and disclosing personal data, the ICO found that Morrisons had not breached data protection law.

 

 

For many businesses, ensuring full compliance with the law will be a sizeable task, however, taking the following steps should provide a good starting point:

 

Audit data processing activities

Firms should consider where, when and how they process personal data. They should map their processing activities so they can identify all types of data processing that the company carries out. They should then seek to ensure that they have a lawful basisfor each type of processing that they are conducting. The lawful bases for processing are: ‘consent’, ‘performance of a contract’, ‘legal obligation’, ‘vital interests’, ‘public interest/exercise of official authority’and ‘legitimate interests’. Whether one of the above applies to any particular type of processing will depend entirely on the circumstances. Additional conditions also apply to any processing of ‘special categories’of data – such as information about a person’s health – which is prohibited unless further conditions are met.

 

Review contracts/service agreements with ‘data processors’

Data processors are those who process personal data on a someone else’s behalf. A good example of this is where a company outsources its payroll to an external company. In that instance, the external company is a data processor. The law requires data controllers to ensure that they only appoint data processors who have provided sufficient guarantees regarding their GDPR compliance. The law also requires that this relationship be governed by a contract that sets out the parties’ data protection obligations.

 

Review direct marketing activities

Those that market directly to individuals must ensure that they have a lawful basis in order to use personal data for marketing purposes. An example of this is where firms send marketing emails to a person with their consent. It is not always necessary to have consent before marketing directly to people, however, this will depend upon the specific circumstances. Firms must comply with the GDPR and other legislation including the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations (PECR).

 

Make ‘fair processing information’ is provided

Businesses should ensure that they provide a Privacy Notice to individuals when they first collect their data. The Privacy Notice should explain who the business is, provide its (and the Data Protection Officer’s) contact details, purposes for processing people’s personal data and details of the legal basis upon which the business relies upon for processing the data. It should explain the details of any ‘legitimate interest’that it may rely upon for processing data as well as the details of any third parties that the data may be sent to. Finally, it should also set out the details of any transfer of personal data that might occur to other countries and inform individuals about the rights they have under the GDPR.

 

Register the business as a data controller with the Information Commissioner

If the business processes personal data, then it should register with the Information Commissioner. For more information, see the Information Commissioner’s website: www.ico.org.uk

 

Implement policies and procedures to meet GDPR rights

Individuals have numerous rights under the GDPR such as the right of access, the right to rectificationand the right to erasure. If a firm receives such a request from an individual, it will be important for it to ensure that it responds to the request appropriately and within the one-month time limit. Ensuring that it has policies and procedures in place to facilitate the handling of a request is important in order to ensure that the request is handled correctly and in order to be able to actively demonstrate compliance with the law.

 

Implement appropriate security measures

Businesses should ensure that its systems for processing personal data – both off and on-line are physically secure – utilising appropriate technical and organisational measures. Systems should be tested regularly. It may make sense to use a reputable IT company to test the security and integrity of the firm’s IT systems.

 

Conduct staff training

The vast majority of data breaches are the result of human error. Ensuring that staff are trained in relation to data protection issues and that the business is able to demonstrate this in the event of a data breach are critical steps towards preventing a breach from occurring in the first place. It may also help in avoiding a financial penalty from the ICO in the event of a breach. Businesses should train all staff and conduct annual refresher training.

 

Consider whether it is necessary to appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO)

This is mandatory in some instances – particularly if the business’s core activities consist of regular or systematic large-scale monitoring of individuals. However, even if it is not mandatory, the business may still wish to appoint a DPO in order to ensure that a single person takes responsibility for ensuring compliance. A DPO must be appointed on the basis of professional qualities and, in particular, expert knowledge of data protection law. A DPO must also meet certain minimum tasks and responsibilities set out in the GDPR.

 

Implement an effective system for reporting data breaches

Personal data breaches must be reported to the ICO within 72 hours unless the breach is unlikely to result in a risk to the rights and freedoms of individuals. It is, therefore, important that the firm has an appropriate process in place to promptly analyse a data breach, reach a determination on whether it is mandatory to report the breach, and doing so where it is necessary.

 

Conduct a Data Protection Impact Assessment when necessary

If a proposed data processing activity is likely to result in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of individuals and where a type of processing utilises new technology, the business must conduct a Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) before it begins that processing. A DPIA is a risk assessment aimed at identifying potential risks in the proposed processing of personal data in order to enable a data controller to address and minimise those risks if it is appropriate to conduct the proposed processing proposed. A DPIA must be documented.

 

To conclude

The law is quite clear on what it expects and the punishment that it will mete out if the rules aren’t followed. As recent cases have shown, both individuals and companies alike can face action.

 

Carl Johnson

Carl Johnson is a partner and head of regulatory at Stephensons Solici

Posted in Blogs, Greg Whitaker's diaryComments (0)

COMMENT: TIME FOR LAWS TO SAVE UK REMAN

These are challenging times for our industry, with consolidation showing no signs of slowing down, along with concerns about the ‘B-word’ and the economy in general, business captains have their hands tightly on the rudder trying to navigate these choppy waters. Unfortunately, uncertain times usually result to price wars which can lead to ‘buy cheap’ sell for ‘as much as possible’.

 

This has led to a massive growth in ‘white box’ and ‘plain label’ products to the detriment of established, and, often, British brands, with the cheapest option being Far-Eastern copies. This trend is decimating the remanufacturing industry, since being so labour-intensive, it cannot compete on price, and distributors do not have to worry about surcharges and control of old-core.

 

The result has been the loss of a complete industry in the UK, along with jobs and the support industry behind.

 

Remanufacturing is no longer an ‘under the arches’ operation; it is a highly-technological and professional industry requiring skill, knowledge and investment. In addition to producing equivalent to or better than original equipment (OE) specification products, it has significant environmental credentials, which should be a major concern to all, so that we can protect the earth and its resources for future generations.

 

The basic raw material is the old part which would normally be scrapped. However, in the remanufacturing process this is fully stripped and re-worked with all wearing, faulty and parts prone to failure being replaced. The finished product is then tested to at least OE specifications using the latest computerised test equipment to ensure that it meets the strict performance levels, before being packed and ready for sale. Each remanufactured part usually has at least a one-year warranty with many companies, such as Autoelectro, offering an extended warranty.

 

Generally, the total remanufacturing industry in the UK employs over 50,000 people, contributes around £2.4 billion to GDP with the potential to increase to £5.6 billion, recovering around 270,000 tonnes of materials, saving an equivalent 0.5% of total UK carbon emissions compared to new equivalents.

 

This includes products as diverse as washing machines, ink cartridges, computers and boilers: the environmental impact can clearly be seen. The automotive industry is considered to be one of the most environmentally-aware manufacturing sectors.

 

A number of EU directives, driving a shift in business practice, can be seen to have contributed to this awareness. In 2002, the EU introduced the End of Life Vehicle Directive, which requires vehicle manufacturers (VMs) to reach the new vehicle goal of reusability and/or recyclability of at least 85%, and reusability and/or recoverability of at least 95% by weight, if measured against the international standard ISO 22620.

 

The need to consider the recovery of a product’s traditional disposal is required to combat the environmental damage caused by the discarding of end of life products. Product recovery can be used to minimise the demand for energy and raw materials and the environmental impact of waste. Product recovery proposes that the management logic of the system is changed from an ‘open’ production system to a ‘closed’ one of variable length, as demonstrated below.

 

The open loop describes a process which starts by taking resources from the ecosystem. The raw materials and energy are channelled into the transformation process, and, finally, the process ends with landfill disposal or incineration process.

 

For this situation to be sustainable, the consumption of natural resource needs to be lower than the ecosystem’s ability to regenerate them. By contrast, in the closed loop scenario, supply chain recovery activities are undertaken which delay the product disposal by starting new production cycles on the product, before treatment and disposal.

 

Remanufacturing is currently playing a significant part in the sustainability and economics of the automotive industry. European regulations for end-of-life have forced VMs to consider recycling when designing new models and remanufacturing is helping to meet environmental targets in relation to greenhouse gasses and preserving the earth’s natural resources by reusing them, rather than just sending unwanted material to landfill sites.

 

Also, as more new technology is being incorporated into modern vehicles, components are becoming more expensive due to their complexity and, sometimes, as a result of the materials used in their construction, such as platinum, palladium and rhodium in catalytic converters. Remanufacturing of these components preserves the precious metals used and can offer a significant saving over a new replacement component. A good remanufactured part will perform as well as, if not better than the original part, since any design faults will be engineered out ensuring the reliability of the finished remanufactured part.

 

However, remanufacturing is also facing significant challenges from the changing technology. This is due to the continual investment required and the lack of information available to independent remanufacturers. Also, changes in drivetrain technology to electric and hydrogen fuel-cell may mean that, moving forward, there are not as many wearing parts to remanufacture.

 

Calling on the government to act

 

Currently, remanufacturers supplying the automotive aftermarket are facing competition from cheaper quality copy products, which are driving prices down and affecting the overall viability of the remanufacturer. There is clearly a case for government intervention, as it is in the national interest to support remanufacturing due to its green credentials in helping to meet national and international environmental targets.

 

There also needs to be a strong independent remanufacturing industry to ensure that the original equipment manufacturers do not establish a monopoly, which is not in the interest of the consumer or the automotive industry, in particular, the automotive aftermarket.

 

Many people now consciously look at the environmental issues when replacing personal vehicles, so our ‘Captains of Industry’ need to consider the implications of their purchasing decisions when selecting parts to stock in their businesses. We all have a duty to future generations to protect the environment, and the UK remanufacturing industry is well-placed to serve the sector, being able to accommodate short production runs and offer cost-effective replacement parts, particularly for less popular applications.

 

Autoelectro is leading the way for UK-based remanufacturing, having invested heavily in remanufacturing processes, some of the most advanced test equipment in the world and an industry-leading website, which allows customers to track and allocate outstanding surcharges. If properly managed, it can result in trading virtually surcharge-free; thus, removing one of the obstacles of supporting remanufactured products.

 

Clearly, remanufacturing can play an important role in protecting our environment, but also by promoting the benefits of remanufactured product and educating the end-user, without necessarily compromising margins.

 

The automotive sector is trying to be more environmentally-friendly, with new technologies being introduced to new cars, and aftermarket industry influencers can play their part by considering remanufactured product whilst driving their latest low emission vehicle. We have an obligation to protect our planet for future generations.

Posted in Blogs, Greg Whitaker's diary, Karen Reilly's BlogComments (1)

Advertisement
  • ECP's Andy Hamilton and the modern age
  • Money: Is P.E the enemy? 
  • CAT Awards:  Learn the stories behind the winners 

more info

    • Should hand car washes face further regulation?

      View Results

      Loading ... Loading ...
    • Popular
    • Latest
    • Comments
    • Tags
    • Subscribe