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AVON TYRES PLANS 300 REDUNDANCIES

AVON TYRES PLANS 300 REDUNDANCIES

Tyre manufacturer Cooper-Avon is to axe up to 300 jobs at its Melksham site.

The U.S based Cooper Tire and Rubber Co issued a statement which said it would be ‘consulting on 300 jobs’. The plant currently employs a total of 723 workers.

Under the plan, light vehicle tyre production would be transferred to another of Cooper’s worldwide sites, while motorcycle and motorsport tyre production would remain in Melksham, along with various Head Office functions.

Jaap van Wessum, General Manager – Cooper Tire Europe, said: “Pending consultation, if positions are made redundant, Cooper will remain committed to doing all we can to support those employees who may potentially be affected. We will be consulting with our recognised trade union, Unite, and other employee representatives, and have arranged additional support for affected colleagues, which will be available throughout this process. In addition, we will work closely with Wiltshire Council and the Department for Work and Pensions to provide the best possible support to our colleagues and community”.

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FIRST LINE LTD SECURES £20m FUNDING

FIRST LINE LTD SECURES £20m FUNDING

Banbury-based First Line Ltd has secured £20 million in funding from Santander Corporate & Commercial. The money will help the firm expand its exports and capitalise on growth opportunities in overseas markets.

The firm expects 30% of its annual turnover in 2018 to come from export sales, which has seen ‘robust’ year-on-year growth over the past six years.

Keith Schofield, Finance Director, First Line Ltd, said: “We are delighted with the ongoing success of the business and the opportunities presented by overseas markets are truly exciting. Growth will be achieved via a number of strategies including new products and focussing on new segments such as classic cars. Santander has quickly become a trusted partner, providing the financial support and facilities needed for us to take the company to the next level.”

Steve Bateman, Relationship Director, Santander Corporate & Commercial, said: “First Line is looking to grow its market share globally over the next few years and the facilities offered by Santander will be key for them to achieve these growth ambitions. We are delighted to be supporting such a fantastic, growth focused UK business that will benefit from Santander’s unrivalled expertise in helping SMEs export and trade internationally”.

Founded in 1983, the firm sells parts under the Borg & Beck and Key Parts tables in addition to the First Line brand  is now based from a 170,000 sq ft warehouse clearly visible from the M40. 

 

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AAG ACQUIRES PLATINUM INTERNATIONAL

AAG ACQUIRES PLATINUM INTERNATIONAL

The Alliance Automotive Group (AAG) has acquired battery distributor Platinum International. Terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

Previously known as UK Batteries, Platinum International was formed in 2002 by Chris Taylor following the sale of a previous battery venture. Speaking about the acquisition, he said: ““I am delighted to see Platinum become part of AAG, especially with its reputation as a leader in the UK market. Platinum has been built over a long period of time and I would like to thank my team for their hard work and contribution to making the business a success. The development of Platinum is also a testament to how much support and loyalty we receive from our customers and suppliers and I am convinced that, together with AAG, Platinum will continue to achieve great things. I am confident that I’ve found the best long-term home for the business.”

AAG, which is owned by the U.S based Genuine Parts Company, has made a number of acquisitions in the UK over the year to date, most of which have been all-makes motor factors. Platinum joins Apec Braking and BTN Turbo as AAG’s specialist distributors.

Steve Richardson, Managing Director of AAG UK stated, “We are excited to welcome Platinum into our UK business and to strengthen our position in the UK battery market. We have tremendous respect for Platinum as a long standing supplier to our Group and are confident the integration of the company into AAG will add value for all our customer and lead to long term, sustainable, growth. Platinum has a strong and talented management team and is an excellent strategic fit for our group”.

 

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HONEYWELL GARRETT APPOINTS TURBOACTIVE AS ‘MASTER DISTRIBUTOR’

HONEYWELL GARRETT APPOINTS TURBOACTIVE AS ‘MASTER DISTRIBUTOR’

Honeywell turbochargers have new distribution.

Turbocharger manufacturer Honeywell Garrett has appointed Teeside-based Turboactive as a ‘master distributor’ for the UK and Northern Ireland. Rival distributor BTN Turbo is also a master distributor for the brand, and will continue to be so.

”We are very excited  about being appointed a Garrett Master Distributor as it marks a significant change in customer choice, it enables our customers to choose from a huge range of turbos for all sectors-both new and remanufactured” said MD Steve Bush.

Mr. Bush said that the move would give the company access to new markets, allowing it to expand yet further into commercial vehicles and industrial applications in addition to enhancing the light vehicle offering.  He added, ” We are thrilled to have been selected as only one of just two distributors of Honeywell Garret products in the UK market!”

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FPS WITHDRAWS FROM CAMPING AND CARAVANNING SECTOR

FPS WITHDRAWS FROM CAMPING AND CARAVANNING SECTOR

FPS Distribution is to withdraw from the camping and caravanning market. The changes take effect from November 30th and are in response to space pressure across its warehouse network.

Products affected include ‘canvas’ camping products such as tents, awnings and related accessories. Stowage and towing products including Mont Blanc racks, roof boxes and towbars are not affected and will continue to be stocked.

In a press statement, a spokesman said: “Our programme and everyone’s diligent work have provided growth in this sector. However, our market has changed and our core motor components business is growing so fast that we now have capacity challenges”.–

Space pressure on Sheffield DC influenced decision

“By withdrawing from caravan and camping, we will create capacity in our supply chain at both Sheffield, and in our HGV and branch transport fleet. This will allow us to focus on improving and growing our core business” read the statement.

FPS has been part of the Alliance Automotive Group since 2016.

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RAPID GROUP FOUNDER SOLD TO GROUPAUTO PARENT

RAPID GROUP FOUNDER SOLD TO GROUPAUTO PARENT

Carlisle-based motor factor chain TMS has been sold to Alliance Automotive Group (AAG), the parent company of the GROUPAUTO and UAN buying groups.

The 24-branch factor is active over Northern England and Southern Scotland. Terms of the deal have not been announced.

TMS Motor Spares Ltd started life as Teviot Motor Factors Ltd in the 1970’s when two of the current Directors bought a factors franchise.  A change of ownership led to TMS Motor Spares being set up in 1996 with a single branch (Annan). The business’ approach to trade factoring was a success and lead to expansion, resulting in the formation of the Rapid buying group in 2005.

AAG also announced the acquisition of three other Scottish single-branch factors that were already existing members. These are Livingston Autoparts Ltd, WD Motor Factors based in Dunfermline and Alloa-based Bridge Motor Factors.

 

 

 

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EURO CAR PARTS DIVESTS NINE AP BRANCHES

EURO CAR PARTS DIVESTS NINE AP BRANCHES

Following the ruling by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) after the acquisition of Andrew Page, Euro Car Parts has confirmed it has now sold the required nine branches to Hilco Capital Limited.

The deal, which also includes two commercial vehicle sites in addition to the nine Andrew Page sites, will see all 11 branches rebranded as Auto Spares and Parts (ASAP) throughout this month. ASAP registered it’s current name at Companies House on Monday. Previously it was known as AP Tradeco Ltd. ECP’s CEO Martin Gray had been listed as a Director of AP Tradeco, but resigned on September 3rd.

The ASAP brand name is currently used by ECP for part of it’s Marine division. 

Employees will transfer from Andrew Page to ASAP as part of the sale and will be managed by Tom Clegg who has joined the ASAP business as MD.

Hilco is a financial investor across a range of sectors and hold a diverse range of investments across the UK.

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ENGINE OIL REMOVED FROM SALE FOLLOWING INVESTIGATION

ENGINE OIL REMOVED FROM SALE FOLLOWING INVESTIGATION

Granville Oil and Chemicals has removed 5W30 Hypalube Evo from sale, following an investigation by VLS (Verification of Lubricant Specifications).

A complaint was received in November 2017 concerning the ability of the product to meet its own technical specifications and the claims it made regarding OEM specifications. In particular, it was alleged that the product did not meet its own stated NOACK volatility measure and that its claims for OEM specifications of VW 504.00/507.00, PSA B71 2290 and GM LL–A/B–025 were unfeasible as no additive package was available at the time to meet those requirements.

Test showed that the product failed to m

Oil has been withdrawn

eet the stated NOACK volatility measure. The VLS technical panel also raised questions about the claims relating to PSA B71 2290 and GM LL-A/B-025.

Granville Oil & Chemicals Ltd ‘cooperated fully’ with the investigation and undertook its own internal investigation, with the result that the product was discontinued effective 30th June 2018.

Thanking Granville for its cooperation in the investigation, David Wright, Secretary of VLS and Chairman of UKLA added: “This case is a perfect example of VLS performing its vital role to maintain standards in the industry and ensure an open and transparent market. Customers must be able to have confidence that the products they purchase really can deliver what is claimed.”

 

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PEOPLE NEWS: JIM MAZZA JOINS PDP BUYING GROUP

PEOPLE NEWS: JIM MAZZA JOINS PDP BUYING GROUP

Buying group Parts Distribution Partnership has announced that Jim Mazza will be joining the Group’s management team with immediate effect. Working with the members, he will assist in every aspect of the groups development.

Jim Mazza will be best known to CAT readers as the former Managing Director of AAG’s trading groups in the UK. Prior to that, he enjoyed a successful career at plumbing and builder’s merchant Wolseley UK.

PDP Chair, Alastair Whatmore commented: “With consolidation in the market showing little signs of slowing down, we recognise the need to change, to grow and to develop a group that is well positioned to take advantage of the opportunities that undoubtedly exist for independent motor factors and suppliers. Jim has an impressive track record in the automotive aftermarket and brings to our group a wealth of experience and buying group knowledge which will undoubtedly help us achieve our objectives”.

Jim Mazza added: “A decision to join the PDP team was not taken lightly and having spent some time looking at what the PDP does and its hopes and aspirations, I came away convinced that the group presents exciting prospects to grow and develop initially for the benefit of the existing membership, but ultimately for those motor factors looking for safe harbour in turbulent times”.

“PDP is undoubtedly a platform to build on, and I am looking forward with relish to working with the group, its members and its supplier partners and helping PDP achieve its ambitions”.

 

 

 

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BOSAL CALLS IN THE ADMINISTRATORS

BOSAL CALLS IN THE ADMINISTRATORS

Preston-based emissions parts manufacturer Bosal has called in the administrators.

Julien Irving and Andrew Poxon of Leonard Curtis Business Rescue and Recovery will attempt to find a buyer for the firm, properly called Bosal Automotive and Industrial Components (BAIC) ltd. 

In January this year Bosal sold off its aftermarket tow bar and automotive carrier and protection system businesses to TowerBrook Capital Partners as part of a restructuring programme that the company had called ‘Grow-Fix-Divest’. At the time, the company boasted of a ‘sound financial position’ and said it was going to use the (undisclosed) proceeds to clear all senior debt and to invest in the exhaust division.

However, a notice in the London Gazette confirmed that administrators had been appointed on June 5th.

The company previously went into administration in 2013. At the time it blamed competition from Eastern Europe and long-lasting stainless steel reducing the frequency of exhaust replacements. It also blamed its own former employees, who took it to court over redundancy payments. The company later bought itself out of administration.

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