Archive | Greg Whitaker’s diary

DATE NIGHT: YOUR CHANCE TO BE ON A CALENDAR

PROMOTION ON BEHALF OF HELLA

HELLA – 2019 Workshop Calendar Competition

Chipping Warden, October 2017 HELLA is looking for workshops that have ‘something special’ to feature in the company’s 2019 “Experts At Work” calendar to celebrate the dedication and commitment that technicians make to the industry globally. 

HELLA, a world renowned manufacturer of automotive components and lighting solutions, is giving workshops the opportunity to enter the competition to show what makes their business extraordinary. Whether it is a team of excellent employees, working with exceptional cars or perhaps it’s in the most unusual location – HELLA wants to hear from you!

To enter, workshops simply need to send in a few photos that really showcase their premises or what makes it different, along with a short description of why they have got what it takes to be featured in the calendar.

The winners will receive a range of top quality prizes including an exclusive photo shoot by a professional photographer, as well as the international “Experts At Work” award from HELLA, with their pictures used in the calendar, which will be distributed worldwide. Last, but by no means least, the winners will also receive a fantastic package worth almost £500 for their workshops. 

The competition is underway, but closes on 6th November 2017, so don’t delay, apply today! For all the details about this exciting opportunity visit www.facebook.com/hella.deutschland and like the page. Alternatively you can also access https://www.hella-contest.com/en/

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LUCAS BATTERIES SPONSORS GRAFF LEMANS CAR

Ecobat Battery Technologies, which uses the Lucas Batteries brand under licence, is to sponsor a LeMans racer.

The Graff Racing Gibson V8 powered ORECA 07 LMP2 racer will be driven by former Formula 3 champion James Winslow, who is in his first season in driving for Graff Racing.

Commenting on the association, EBT’s Steve Sheppard said: “Since the formal consolidation of our various battery businesses spread throughout Europe, which was completed last year, we have been looking for an opportunity to promote the pan-European nature of EBT.

“Le Mans is a truly global event and therefore provides us with just such a platform, while also providing the opportunity to raise awareness of the Lucas battery brand to both our many trade customers and the wider motoring public.

 

 

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RAC FOUNDATION WARNS OF AUTONOMOUS VEHICLE MOT CHANGES

RAC FOUNDATION WARNS OF AUTONOMOUS VEHICLE MOT CHANGES

A Director of the RAC Foundation has warned of how the MOT will need to adapt as vehicles have an increasing amount of autonomy, backed by sensors.

In an interview on Radio 4’s Today programme Wednesday morning, Steve Gooding said: “We need to get our heads around how to certify that these vehicles are roadworthy. We are dealing with artificial intelligence and that represents a challenge”

Gooding also spoke about an issue that had been recently raised by a House of Lords technology committee that the most concerning issue about the vehicles was the point that they hand control back to the driver.

Also speaking on the same segment was Paul Newman, Founder of Oxbotica – a company developing control systems for autonomous vehicles. On the subject of connected cars and hacking, he said: “It is something we think about all the time and it is important… We need to bring trust in these vehicles”. He added that the same concerns would in time ‘affect anything that moves’ including farm vehicles and mining machines.self driving Jaguar

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Obituary: Steve Tranter

Steve Tranter, a long serving Product Manager with CES UK and The Parts Alliance, hassteve_tranter died after losing his battle with illness.
He built his career in the aftermarket, which stretched across 40 years.

Steve spent 20 years working for CES, a Parts Alliance Group business, latterly moving to a role with The Parts Alliance in Chester for whom he was Product Manager for Emissions.

Steve was widely known for his personality, kindness and above all, his technical expertise. He was willing to share his knowledge and contributed to articles in the automotive aftermarket press.

His first job was as a replenishment officer, later moving high up the career ladder as a Managing Director and Operations Director with different businesses before joining CES.

Away from work Steve liked all things automotive and was also an avid follower of Manchester United.
Steve leaves a partner, Colette, and two children. His funeral will take place on Friday, 10 February at St Thomas’ All Saints Church, Ellesmere Port.

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Pagid launch ‘Ready for Anything’ promotion

Friction brand Pagid have sent us details of in interesting customer-facing promotion . Details are as follows:

Pagid, the UK’s biggest-selling braking brand, has announced the launch of its new winter promotion and safety campaign – ‘Ready for Anything’. The campaign covers a range of winter motoring safety advice, while the new promotion offers a chance to win spectacular once-in-a-lifetime prizes.

Visitors to the dedicated Pagid winter website at pagidwinter.com will find winter driving techniques, cold weather car check info, and some very useful winter motoring videos. In addition, Pagid is giving away a VIP trip for two to the original Ice Hotel in Sweden. Winners will enjoy three-nights of arctic fun with a stay in the magical Ice Hotel itself, a Northern Lights discovery trip and a sled-dog adventure.

The promotion, which can be entered by purchasing Pagid products throughout December 2016 and January 2017, also has runner-up prizes comprising Pagid-branded North Face jackets and special Pagid ‘Ready for Anything’ winter kits – packed full of seasonal motoring essentials.

Keeping customers safe this winter

Driving in winter conditions brings its own unique set of challenges. Be it excess water, dirt, gravel, leaves, ice or even snow, the upshot is that the slippery roads bring safety to the fore.

For garages, it can also provide opportunities to boost business. Demand for winter tyres has increased in recent years, but there are other areas of a car that need checking to stay safe in the hardy, winter conditions. Testing the coolant levels and the quality of antifreeze can be crucial in the winter months, and this could be an opportunity to offer a free check of the coolant, or even a full car winter inspection.

Offering free (or low cost) checks reassures customers, increases potential loyalty, and gets people into the garage.

Two other elements often overlooked are the clarity of headlights and the air conditioning. Garages should always ensure headlights are polished to their former and less hazardous glory, and with air con, blowers that are not operating properly will suck in cold humid air from the outside and will not clear windows quickly enough. A recharged air con system will demist windows faster with warm, dry air, so this area is worth a thorough check.

More obviously, brakes are a serious safety element that can have serious consequences during inclement conditions. For example, brake wear should be even across each axle to avoid potential wayward moments during emergencies; especially if the grip levels differ on each side, which can be common during this time of year.

Ready for Anything

Sadie Jonas, Business Development Manager at Pagid said,

“We hope that Pagid’s ‘Ready for Anything’ campaign will raise awareness for keeping drivers safe as the temperatures plummet. In icy conditions, stopping distances can be ten times longer than they are in dry conditions, so brakes operating at optimum performance are obviously crucial; but so too are many other factors, including tyres, lights, coolants and even air-con systems. Our dedicated winter site covers all this advice, and we’re delighted to offer some ice-cool prizes, including that very special trip to the Arctic Circle to stay in the Ice Hotel”.

‘Ready for Anything’ will also be promoted on Pagid’s successful social media sites including Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram. To enter the promotion, trade customers just need to make a Pagid purchase from Euro Car Parts between 1st December 2016 and 31st January 2017, and then register online at pagidwinter.com Customers need to retain their invoice to register the purchase on the website (and to claim prizes).

Pagid’s range of braking products is available exclusively through Euro Car Parts. Customers can find their local branch by entering their postcode on the Pagid website pagid.com/distribution  

For more details, videos, advice, prize information and terms & conditions, customers can visit the dedicated Pagid ‘Ready for Anything’ website, or ask their Euro Car Parts sales advisor.

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AUTOINFORM GOES LIVE THIS WEEKEND

There’s just time to get your hands on one of the last places for this year’s Autoinform LIVE event, being held this weekend at the GTG Academy in Wolverhampton.

The event is the UK’s biggest and best workshop training event, featuring 24 timetabled training sessions – each delivered by an OESAA-approved trainer – separated into three colour-coded packages to help simplify the event for new attendees.

Autoinform LIVE has carefully tailored its package options to suit delegates old and new, with ‘Green’ modules aimed at first time visitors, ‘Amber’ sessions targeted at those who have visited the event twice and ‘Red’ for those who have attended every show since it began three years ago. (More information on the training modules available can be found here)

A gala dinner will once again take place on Saturday evening, with popular comedian Mick Miller now confirmed to help provide a lively end to the first day. The entire weekend costs just £195 +VAT, which includes all training, lunch and refreshments at the GTG Academy, plus a Gala Dinner ticket including welcome drinks, meal, entertainment and coach transfers from selected hotels.rsz_gtgwolverhampton

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500 ATTEND REGIONAL PARTS ALLIANCE SHOW

A very high turnout was recorded at a regional trade show organised by the Parts Alliance in Exeter.

The event was held in the function rooms of the Exeter Chiefs rugby club and had a variety of suppliers promoting their wares, running competitions and passing on fitting tips and best practice to technicians.

An added attraction was touring car driver Matt Neil who shared anecdotes about his career with the crowd throughout the evening.

Visitors were mostly customers of branches in the South West. Most of these branches are former Unipart Automotive sites, which were simply re-branded as Parts Alliance.

Paul Dineen, Head of Garage Programmes at The Parts Alliance said: “To host a midweek evening event and attract so many people after the working day was a great achievement. It was also half-term so a number of owners brought their families along too”.

“Huge credit goes to all the team who worked tirelessly to organise the evening and of course to the supporting suppliers and attending garage customers who made the effort to come along”.

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PDP Chair: Commitment and spend ‘most important’ factor

Alastair Whatmore, Chairman of the Parts Distribution Partnership has contacted us to confirm that five out of 21 member companies have left.

However, he explains that to simply look at the membership number misses the point as the group considers commitment and spend with suppliers as being the ‘most important’ factor.  “The companies that have decided to leave has reduced overall turnover by 18% and spend with suppliers by 15%” he said, also noting that the group itself had grown by 70 percent since 2013.

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VALEO ACQUIRE FTE AUTOMOTIVE

VALEO ACQUIRE FTE AUTOMOTIVE

valeo fte stitchThe owner of hydraulic component firm FTE Automotive has announced that the company is to be sold to Valeo, subject to the usual legalities.

Established in the late 1940s, the firm has been owned by a number of private equity companies in recent years. Current owner Bain Capital acquired it in 2013 from PAI Partners. In turn, PAI acquired the company in 2005 from HG Capital who had owned it since 2002. HG acquired it from Dana Corporation.

In  recent times, FTE AutomotiveThe company won the 2016 PACE Award (premier Automotive Supplier’s Contribution to Excellence) for its lubrication oil pump and the PACE Innovation Partnership Award for its cooperation with a major German OEM.

 

Rothschild and Goldman Sachs advised Bain Capital on the transaction. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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AUTOMECHANIKA BIRMINGHAM AFTERMARKET SEMINARS

PROMOTIONAL ARTICLE ON BEHALF OF THE ORGANISER OF AUTOMECHANIKA BIRMINGHAM

SUZI PERRY Q AND AS 12:30 TESDAY 7 JUNE, KEYNOTE SEMINAR THEATRE

SUZI PERRY Q AND AS 12:30 TUESDAY 7 JUNE, KEYNOTE SEMINAR THEATRE

Automechanika Birmingham will be the home to more than 550 high calibre businesses over the course of three days, from the 7th to the 9th June 2016. As an important part of the visitor experience, the organisers have arranged a series of informative seminars that will examine a wide range of important issues facing both the aftermarket and supply chain.

The aftermarket focussed seminars will be presented by prominent figures and organisations from within the industry and will provide insight, explore the challenges and reveal the opportunities effecting the future of the aftermarket.

The seminars will be presented across three theatres, the Keynote Theatre sponsored by Morris Lubricants, the Aftermarket Theatre sponsored by Aftermarket magazine and the Technical Theatre, with Workshops for the Aftermarket organised by autotechnician magazine and sponsored by TecRMI. The programme of events begins at 10:30 and runs to 16:15 on Tuesday, 10:00 to 16:15 on Wednesday and on Thursday from 10:00 to 13:50: for full details of the entire programme, please visit the Automechanika Birmingham website.

  • Among the aftermarket specific presentations is ‘The workshop of the future: how data is shaping servicing and diagnostics’ by Max Lienard, Autodata, on Tuesday 7th at 11:00.
  • Ian Gillgrass is also giving a presentation on Tuesday on ‘The rise of autonomous technology; what it means for the automotive industry’ at 14:20.
  • The final aftermarket focussed seminar of the Tuesday is Adam Bernstein’s ‘The impact of regulations on business’ at 15:40.
  • On Wednesday, Wendy Williamson of the IAAF, will be giving a seminar at 10:30 on the ‘Challenges facing the automotive aftermarket’.
  • The DVSA will be presenting the latest developments in their seminar of ‘Modernisation of MOT training’ at 11:15.
  • ‘Safeguarding your business: dispute resolution and key updates on consumer legislation’ will be given at 13:40 by Mark Hallam of Motor Codes.
  • There will also be a selection of seminars focussing on the effect technology will have in the aftermarket. First on Wednesday, is HELLA’s Neil Hilton presenting ‘Overcoming the challenges of ADAS’ at 11:20. There will then be a seminar on ‘The impact of technology in the retail sector’ given by Professor Jim Saker at 13:00. Finally in this section will be Prashant Chopra, Autogem, at 15:40 on the subject of ‘TPMS, a tidal wave of challenge and opportunity’.
  • The first aftermarket based seminar on the closing day, Thursday 9th, will be given by Steve Scofield, IMI, at 10:00 on ‘The changing world for Vehicle Testing Stations – MOT requirements demystified’.
  • Also at 10:00, Shaun Greasley of TecAlliance will give a seminar on ‘Supporting the independent’.
  • The penultimate seminar concentrating solely on the aftermarket is ‘Vehicle systems integration’ presented by Paul Grosvenor, MAHLE, at 10:40.

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