Archive | Retailer News

NEWS: RAC AND EURO CAR PARTS MERGE GARAGE SCHEMES

NEWS: RAC AND EURO CAR PARTS MERGE GARAGE SCHEMES

RAC and ECP shake on network deal

A deal has been signed between the RAC and Euro Car Parts in order to merge the RAC Approved Garage network with ECP’s Autofirst.

The new entity will be known as ‘RAC Approved Garages powered by Autofirst Network’ . As the combined number in both networks is in excess of 500 branches, RAC auto first can claim to be the UK’s largest garage network.

READ: FORMER ECP DIRECTOR ANNOUNCED AS HEAD OF SPICERS

As part of the network, each garage will be jointly branded, carrying the prominent RAC and Autofirst Network branding. The partnership, which aims to ensure customers are only ever a few miles from an RAC Approved Garage, will offer consumers all the benefits of a local garage, combined with a national warranty.

By subscribing, garages will also be offered repairs referred to them by RAC patrols from breakdowns through the company’s Accredited Repairer scheme. 

RAC Chief Executive Dave Hobday said: “We know from market research that customers really value the friendly, local and reliable service provided by independent garages and have a very high level of trust in the RAC so this is the perfect recipe for garages looking to stand out from the crowd in a busy marketplace.”

READ: ANDY HAMILTON APPOINTED ECP CEO

Andy Hamilton, Euro Car Parts Chief Executive, added: ““We believe the brands are an excellent fit and have the potential to become a first choice for consumers wanting the trust of big brands but with local service and convenience”.

Posted in Latest News, Retailer News, special news, UncategorisedComments (1)

BREAKING: LKQ CONFIRM SUKHPAL RESIGNATION

BREAKING: LKQ CONFIRM SUKHPAL RESIGNATION

LKQ Corp, the owner of Euro Car Parts has confirmed that it has accepted the resignation of Executive Chairman Sukhpal Singh Ahluwalia.

The founder of ECP, known simply by his first name to all in the business, sold the company to the US-based parts giant in 2011, remaining as an Executive Director.

The conformation follows reports that Sukhpal, Martin Gray, Steve Horne and other senior management walked out of ECP last week over the subject of proposed cuts by LKQ.

READ: ANDY HAMILTON SUCCEEDS MARTIN GRAY AS EURO CAR PARTS’ CEO 

Sukhpal commented, “ECP has been my life’s work and there will always be a bit of the company in me. I have enjoyed my relationship with LKQ but the time has come for a change so I can devote my full abilities to building the property business with my sons. I am confident in the strategy LKQ has for its European segment and for the next level of growth and operational excellence at ECP.”

Dominick Zarcone, President and Chief Executive Officer of LKQ Corporation, stated, “Sukhpal has been a key partner with LKQ over the past seven years as we have quadrupled the size of our business in the U.K., and he has served as a valued LKQ board member. While we will miss his insights, we respect his desire to spend all his time focused on the family property business and wish him nothing but the best in those endeavours.”

READ: BOARD WALKOUT AT EURO CAR PARTS

Sukhpal has resigned from the company he founded in 1979

This is not the first time that Sukhpal has left ECP while under LKQ ownership. However, he left in 2014 amid rumours that he had fallen out with the parent company and was planning to start a new factor chain to be called APX. These rumours took on substance when a recruitment advert appeared in CAT. Shortly after Sukhpal and several dozen other former Euro Car Parts’ employees agreed to return to ECP under new terms.

 

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, Latest News, News, Retailer News, special newsComments (0)

BREAKING: WALKOUT AT EURO CAR PARTS

BREAKING: WALKOUT AT EURO CAR PARTS

Sukhpal Singh Ahluwalia and Martin Gray have reportedly quit Euro Car Parts amid concerns that parent company LKQ is planning to axe hundreds of jobs. CFO Steve Horne has also reportedly left his post.

Sources close to CAT suggested that 400 jobs are to be axed. The news comes just days after LKQ announced the appointment of Ard Franz as COO of LKQ Europe.

In October we spoke to Mr. Ahluwalia and Mr. Gray about the future of the business, particularly now its main competitors are no longer local independent factor groups, but are other similar stock-market listed businesses with North American parent companies.

NASDAQ-listed LKQ’s share prices have dropped significantly compared with the previous period.

Gray, Ahluwalia and LKQ have been contacted for comment.

More on this breaking story as it develops

ECP’s 75th branch

 

 

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Latest News, News, Retailer News, special newsComments (5)

DUTCH TRADE BODY TALK BREXIT WITH IGA

DUTCH TRADE BODY TALK BREXIT WITH IGA

Dutch garage trade group BOVAG (BOnd Van Automobielhandelaren en Garagehouders)  – has completed a nationwide tour of British garages to discuss future working relationships ahead of Brexit.

The BOVAG team joined up with the Independent Garage Association (IGA) during the trip. The visitors gained insight into the management of British independent garage businesses and discussed issues affecting the industry including MOT testing and access to technical information. The groups also discussed Brexit and the implications for their working relationship.

Stuart James, Director of the IGA said: “This co-operation with our European colleagues is a positive step towards maintaining strong partnerships throughout and beyond the Brexit process.”

Meanwhile, Gerard ten Buuren, Chair of BOVAG’s Independent Garage Division, said the team “gained a tremendous amount” from the visit and is “delighted” to continue working alongside the IGA.

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, Latest News, latest news, News, Retailer News, special newsComments (0)

DCS LEATHERHEAD BECOMES LATEST AAG ACQUISITION

DCS LEATHERHEAD BECOMES LATEST AAG ACQUISITION

Leatherhead-based Discount Car Spares has been acquired by AAG, parent company of the GroupAuto buying group.

The factor was established in 1989 and has two branches. John and Gary Syrett and Robert Herman were Directors.

DCS was an existing GroupAuto member and participated in group promotions, such as the AutoCare network. Last year the factor presented customer Shirley Garage with a prize for becoming the 600th member of the scheme.

The news follows last week’s announcement that AAG had acquired nine-branch Lloyds Motor Factors 

 

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, Latest News, News, Retailer News, special news, UncategorisedComments (0)

TENNECO ACQUIRES OHLINS FOR $160m

TENNECO ACQUIRES OHLINS FOR $160m

Kenth Ohlin and Brian Kessler

Tenneco has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Ohlins Racing A.B. Total consideration for the deal, which is set to close in the first quarter of 2019 subject to shareholder approval, is approximately $160 million.

Ohlins is a Swedish premium suspension manufacturer, known for its high-end hardware often used in motorsport applications as well as in the consumer automotive market.

The deal further enhances Tenneco’s primary identity as a manufacturer and marketer of ride performance systems, as well as clean air solutions in the automotive industry. It comes amid a year of large acquisitions of high-profile brands for Tenneco – most notably its acquisition of US manufacturer Federal-Mogul on October 1st.

“I am delighted to welcome the Ohlins team as an important part of our new Aftermarket and Ride Performance company,” said Brian Kesseler, co-CEO of Tenneco. “Ohlins’ technology team will allow us to rapidly grow our product offerings for current and future customers, as well as help us win a larger share of business in developing mobility markets.”

Meanwhile, Ohlins founder Kenth Ohlin, who will continue in partnership with Tenneco to employ his technological vision, said: “We are excited to continue to deliver innovative technologies that can accelerate growth with the full strength and resources of Tenneco behind us.”

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

LLOYDS MOTOR SPARES SOLD TO AAG

LLOYDS MOTOR SPARES SOLD TO AAG

Alliance Automotive Group has acquired the Wembley-based factor chain Lloyds Motor Spares (LMS). Terms of the deal have not been announced.

LMS can trace its history back to 1946. It has nine branches in West London and counts utility companies and the police among its fleet contracts. The chain currently employs 110 people and up until the acquisition counted John and Rod Hammond and Peter Benson among its Directors. It had previously been a member of the IFA buying group. 

The deal follows on from AAGs acquisition of a number of aftermarket brands over the last few months, including battery distributor Platinum International in October and Abergavenny-based Motorcare Motor Factors in July.

 

 

Discount Car Spares also acquired by AAG

 

Leatherhead-based Discount Car Spares has been acquired by AAG, parent company of the GroupAuto buying group. 

The factor was established in 1989 and has two branches. John and Gary Syrett and Robert Herman were Directors.

DCS was an existing GroupAuto member and participated in group promotions, such as the AutoCare network. Last year the factor presented customer Shirley Garage with a prize for becoming the 600th member of the scheme.

The news follows last week’s announcement that AAG had acquired nine-branch Lloyds Motor Factors

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, Latest News, News, Retailer News, special newsComments (0)

EVANS SOLD TO SPORTS DIRECT IN PRE-PACK DEAL

EVANS SOLD TO SPORTS DIRECT IN PRE-PACK DEAL

Bike retailer Evans Cycles went into administration, only to be bought straight back out by Sports Direct.

The future of the retailer looked uncertain, as rival Halfords withdrew its bid to take it over, citing a desire to focus on expanding the Cycle Republic chain.

Trading has not been affected at Evans, although gift vouchers are ‘suspended’ and the status of the cycle to work scheme is unclear.

Gatwick-based Evans has a history stretching back to the 1920s, although in recent years the chain has expanded to 62 branches and 1,200 employees through the involvement of private equity. Sports Direct, the firm owned by Mike Ashley holds numerous other companies including department stores Lillywhies and House of Fraser and clothing brands including Firetrap, No Fear and Kangol.

Matt Callaghan, a partner at PwC and one of the administrators, commented:

“We are delighted to have secured a future for the business and employees of Evans. 2018 has been a very difficult trading year for the business, in part due to the impact of the extended winter weather, but also due to a lack of cash to invest in stores and develop the ecommerce platform. A combination of the associated losses, the capex requirements and tightening credit has led to a liquidity crunch”.

“Evans is a long-standing, well known and trusted brand with nearly 100 years of heritage in the cycling market. To have managed to preserve the business and transfer all staff to the purchaser is particularly pleasing.”

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

POLICE ‘PAY AT PUMP’ SUGGESTION DRAWS ANGRY RESPONSE FROM PRA

POLICE ‘PAY AT PUMP’ SUGGESTION DRAWS ANGRY RESPONSE FROM PRA

A suggestion from Chief Constable Simon Cole of the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) that petrol stations should take money upfront in order to reduce instances of petrol theft (known as ‘bilking’) has met an angry response from Brian Madderson, Chair of the Petrol Retailers Association.

“Instead of ‘victim blaming’ petrol retailers, the police should be honest that they are struggling to deliver their commitment to reduce crime”, said Madderson,

Chief Constable Cole’s comments were interpreted by the PRA as needing to install card or app based devices that are regarded by the association as  ‘prohibitively expensive’, estimating the cost to retrofit petrol pumps at £20,000. However, it is common in many self-service countries to pay first and then the cashier will turn the pump on.

Mr Madderson went on, “The UK has seen a 40 percent reduction in filling stations over the past 15 years. Those remaining have developed their retail offer to better serve their customers, with many lost amenities from banks and post offices migrating into the store of petrol stations, particularly in rural areas.”

“Rather than lecturing the victims of crime, the government should be empowering responsible businesses to enforce the law where the police are too overstretched to intervene. One solution would be to give petrol retailers electronic access to the DVLA’s Vehicle Keeper database, so they can pursue drive-offs through the civil courts and ease pressure on the police”.

Posted in Latest News, News, Retailer News, special news, UncategorisedComments (0)

EVANS CYCLES TO BE SOLD BY PRIVATE EQUITY OWNERS

EVANS CYCLES TO BE SOLD BY PRIVATE EQUITY OWNERS

Evans Cycles is to be sold by its private equity owner ECI Partners.

The cycle chain has been making a loss over the past two years, although ECI has perused a strategy of expansion.

At the time of writing bids have been invited for the firm, with Halfords being reported by Sky News as being among the front runners.

Halfords itself set up the Cycle Republic chain as a rival to Evans Cycles in 2014. Halfords has previously stated an aim for Cycle Republic is to double the number of branches.

In general terms, cycle retail on the High Street has been under pressure as there has been a willingness by consumers to buy mid to high-end bikes from non-traditional outlets, such as Go Outdoors or from sports shops such as Triathlon. Low-end family bikes have been under pressure from online retailers such as Wiggle, which one retail survey put as the UK’s second largest cycle retailer in August

Posted in Latest News, News, Retailer NewsComments (1)

Advertisement
  • MPD's Mukesh Shah on network expansion
  • Strategy: Some new diesel components might never be remanufactured
  • Aftermarket Lives:  Aston Barclay opens a sparkling new auction yard

more info

    • Should hand car washes face further regulation?

      View Results

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