Tag Archive | "deals"

DIGRAPH TO OPEN 16 NEW SITES

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DIGRAPH TO OPEN 16 NEW SITES


CV factor Digraph is set to open 16 new branches in the next six months as part of a growth strategy described as ‘aggressive’. This will be in addition to several acquisitions of similar businesses and expansion of existing branches.

The move follows significant investment in the company by Euro Car Parts as well as Sukhpal Singh Ahluwalia and James Rawson. The expansion could create and create 164 jobs.

The new outlets are in various locations across the UK, stretching from Glasgow to Crawley. At this point it is unconfirmed if the new locations will be from LKQ’s existing portfolio, newly acquired sites, or a mix of the two.

The strategy doesn’t seem to phase the management team.  Sukhpal Singh Ahluwalia commented: “Locations, stock and logistics are relatively straightforward – indeed we once opened 12 Euro Car Parts branches in a single day. Our challenge is to find the right people and partners to join us in delivering our vision of market-leading customer service … nationwide. We are building our new branches around the best team players”.

“We are shaking up the industry in other ways too, with major investment in stock ranges, accelerated delivery speeds and added-value programmes, as we continue to build the UK’s most powerful team.”

Branch expansions and upgrades are happening in Gloucester, Northampton, Nuneaton and Stoke. The Northwich branch is relocating to larger premises in Ellesmere Port which will greatly increase stock holding and give improved deliveries to the customer base.

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GKN FIGHTS ‘OPPORTUNISTIC’ HOSTILE TAKEOVER BID

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GKN FIGHTS ‘OPPORTUNISTIC’ HOSTILE TAKEOVER BID


UK engineering company GKN is under threat from a hostile takeover from investment house Melrose Industries.  

Melrose  has made an unsolicited offer to shareholders to  acquire the entire issued share capital of GKN for 1.49 new Melrose shares and 81 pence in cash per share.

Melrose is known for turning engineering companies around and under the strapline ‘buy, sell, improve, sell’ it attempts to add value to the brands it acquires before selling them on, in a similar vein to a private equity. It’s website states it “finances acquisitions using a low level of leverage, improves the businesses by a mixture of investment and changed management focus, sells them and returns the proceeds to shareholders”.

However, the management of GKN do not want to sell to Melrose. In a letter to shareholders GKN Chairman Mike Turner blasts the approach as ‘entirely opportunistic’ and ‘low price and high risk’ before barbing: “Your board believes that Melrose is more focused on financial engineering than real engineering”.

“GKN is six times the size of Melrose’s largest acquisition and your Board believes that Melrose’s management team lacks relevant experience at Board level in several critical areas” wrote Turner, adding that he doen’t believe that Melrose has the necessary relationships with VMs and aircraft makers to make a success of the business. “Cars and aircraft are researched, designed, produced and serviced over several decades – your Board believes that a short term, private equity-style strategy is not the right way to provide sustained shareholder value in our sectors” he said.

GKN said in an earlier letter to shareholders that it would sell non-core assets and return £2.5bn to shareholders in response to the offer. 

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FEATURE: HAYNES’ LONG ROAD TO A DIGITAL FUTURE

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FEATURE: HAYNES’ LONG ROAD TO A DIGITAL FUTURE


Speaking to CAT after the Haynes shareholders AGM, J Haynes has admitted that selling digital manuals through bricks-and-mortar accessory shops is a difficult concept for retailers.

“I’m not quite sure they do [understand how to sell the cards] quite yet. One of the elements that we’re putting together is card that retailers can sell in the store, which contains a code that the customer can redeem for a digital manual” he said, adding that while many customers will continue to want paper books, a growing number will prefer the info on their phone, tablet or laptop. “What we want to do is to get the information into as many drivers’ hands as possible” he explained.

 

Haynes is a firm that has grappled with the method and need to modernise. “I think Eddie [Bell, Group Chairman] outlined at the AGM that we are still a business in turnaround” he said, adding that the publisher continues to have ‘a clear focus on content and data’.

In December 2016, Haynes disposed of publishing and printing buildings in Australia, and more recently sold one of its two decommissioned US freehold properties in Nashville. The Group’s remaining freehold properties in Nashville, Tennessee and Sparkford, Somerset, are presently being marketed for sale. The cash generated from the sales will offset the costs associated with acquiring Swindon-based lubricant data firm OATS, for which it paid a total of £2.4m and Tunbridge-based E3 Technical in a deal valued at £4.72m.

There will be more on Haynes’ strategy in an upcoming issue of CAT.

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LIQUI MOLY ACQUIRED BY WÜRTH GROUP

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LIQUI MOLY ACQUIRED BY WÜRTH GROUP


A deal has been struck by German lube producer Würth Group to acquire Liqui Moly.

Würth Group has owned shares in the Ulm-based company for some years. Now, Managing Partner Ernst Prost has agreed to sell his controlling share in the company, effective January 1s subject to the usual regulatory approvals.  

Following the sale, Würth has said that Liqui Moly will continue to operate as an autonomous company with an independent brand in the Group. Prost will remain with Liqui Moly as joint MD, sharing the role with the firm’s long-standing Head of Sales, Günter Hiermaier.

Liqui Moly has sponsored Team Engstler for years

Peter Zürn, Deputy Chairman of the Central Managing Board of the Würth Group said: “We are proud that this successful and established brand, which is known for its outstanding reputation and great dynamics, will enrich the portfolio of the Würth Group. Our objective is the sustained successful development of Liqui Moly in the future. This is why we will continue to put our faith in the entrepreneurial expertise of Ernst Prost, just as we have done in the past 20 years as a silent partner at Liqui Moly”.

From Prost’s perspective it will be business as usual: “Those who know me know that my employees are my focus,” he said. “After all, it would be foolish to change anything about the road to success over the past few years. Everything will continue just as before – just under a bigger roof that offers greater protection.

In fiscal year 2016, Liqui Moly generated sales of approximately EUR 500 million with 800 employees.

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AAG ACQUIRE FAST PARTS WALES AND MORE

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AAG ACQUIRE FAST PARTS WALES AND MORE


Newport-based factor chain Fast Parts Wales and Peterborough-based Hereward Car and Truck Components are among a list of businesses acquired by Alliance Automotive Group in the last quarter.

Fast Parts Wales is a three branch light vehicle factor business based in South Wales with depots in Abercarn, Cwmbran & Tredegar.  The business was started around 25 years ago by the Travis family and the deal also includes the FastRads cooling system business based in Abercarn. The annual sales are around £9m and prior to the acquisition the business was a member of AAG’s GROUPAUTO buying group.

Hereward Car and Truck Components is another family run business, started in 1983 by the Saddington family. The two-branch factor was a member of the IFA buying group prior to the acquisition by AAG. Annual sales have been around £2.8m.

Single branch factors Macclesfield Motor Factors, DMFX (Darlington) and GD Components (Anglesey) have also been acquired by AAG.

There’s more info in the January issue of CAT Magazine.

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BREAKING: THE PARTS ALLIANCE ACQUIRES BBC SUPERFACTORS

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BREAKING: THE PARTS ALLIANCE ACQUIRES BBC SUPERFACTORS


Business group The Parts Alliance has acquired long-term affiliate member BBC Superfactors.

The seven-branch chain was established thirty years ago by Gary Shulman and Peter Rostron and initially covered the Blackburn, Bury and Chorley areas, hence the name.

“Combining the dedication of our loyal staff team with the expertise of The Parts Alliance has proved to be a winning formula for us over several years,” said MD Gary Shulman.  “We’re excited to now strengthen this relationship to ensure our business continues to thrive long into the future.”

“Since joining The Parts Alliance in December 2012, BBC have posted consistent double-digit annual sales growth and have invested to achieve industry-leading service levels. We are very pleased to welcome our BBC colleagues in the team,” stated Peter Sephton, President and CEO, European Automotive Group.

File pic of team at Blackburn branch

“This acquisition strengthens our position in the UK market and underlines The Part Alliance’s capability of driving growth both organically and through acquisitions,” added Henry Buckley, President and CEO of the PA’s Canadian parent company, Uni-Select.

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ECP SIGNS DEAL WITH CLICKMECHANIC

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ECP SIGNS DEAL WITH CLICKMECHANIC


Factor giant Euro Car Parts has signed a supply agreement with online aggregator ClickMechanic.

The deal means that the aggregator’s client base of mobile technicians and independent garages can take advantage of the pricing of a national account.

Andrew Jervis, Co-Founder of ClickMechanic, said: “We are truly excited to offer the benefits of this agreement to our mechanics and, in turn, grow their businesses. Supporting the UK’s mechanics is a core fundamental of ClickMechanic, and working with Euro Car Parts will deliver better value for money, service offering and parts accuracy for our members.”

Martin Gray, CEO of Euro Car Parts, said: “We are committed to delivering an outstanding range and service to all workshops throughout the UK and working with ClickMechanic is another step in that direction.”

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NEWS: IMPERIAL HOLDINGS ACQUIRES PENTAGON

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NEWS: IMPERIAL HOLDINGS ACQUIRES PENTAGON


South Africa-based Imperial Holdings Limited has acquired dealer group Pentagon. The buyout was made through Imperial’s Motus subsidiary though terms have not been announced.

Pentagon, established in 1991 by its current Chairman, Trevor Reeve, has grown steadily from an initial Vauxhall franchise base to represent leading car and van manufacturers, Peugeot, Seat, Mazda, Citroen, Kia, Renault, Nissan, Fiat, Alfa Romeo, Jeep and Mitsubishi. The group employs 1,262 people, 46% of those have been with the business for 5 years or more.

Existing management will remain throughout Penatgon ‘for a transitional period’ to ensure integration with Imperial’s existing vehicle business. The Pentagon name will remain.

Commenting on the transaction, Mark Lamberti, Group Chief Executive Officer of Imperial said, “We are delighted to expand our international retail footprint into the passenger and light commercial vehicle market in the UK through the acquisition of Pentagon.”

Imperial Holdings Limited is not to be confused with the similarly-named Imperial Automotive Limited.

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REMY: EUROPEAN EXPANSION PLANED BY NEW OWNER

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REMY: EUROPEAN EXPANSION PLANED BY NEW OWNER


A new group has been formed to help remanufacturing brand Remy expand across Europe.

The new group, known as BPI Group Europe combines Remy with Brake Parts Inc. Europe. The division plans to expand the brand with new product offerings under the Remy brand.

“While the company’s name has changed, our customers can continue to count on the trusted Remy brand now and in the future” said Zoltán Király, President and Executive Director, BPI Group Europe.

Remy was acquired by Brake Parts Inc. from Borg-Warner in 2016.

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PARTS ALLIANCE TAKEOVER: UNI SELECT DEAL COMPLETED

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PARTS ALLIANCE TAKEOVER: UNI SELECT DEAL COMPLETED


The deal announced earlier in the year between Canada-based Uni Select and The Parts Alliance has been completed with the former acquiring the latter from a private equity group.

Now the deal has been completed, Parts Alliance CEO Peter Sephton will join Uni Select’s Executive Team as President and Chief Executive Officer of the European Automotive Group.

“All of my colleagues in our organization, our suppliers, members and all other stakeholders see the opportunity for long term financial growth and stability, as well as personal growth as we join a team of like-minded individuals,” said Peter Sephton.

“We could not be more pleased to be adding The Parts Alliance to the Uni-Select family. This is an exciting new growth pillar for Uni-Select in the large and fragmented UK marketplace” commented Uni Select CEO Henry Buckley.

 

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