BM Catalysts strengthens team in key European markets

BM Catalysts’ export sales team grows in strength with the appointment of Gergana Donevska as one of its new Export Sales Representatives. With over ten years proven international sales experience in three different countries, Gergana’s diverse background and unique skillset will bring a greater dimension to BM Catalysts’ expanding and experienced export team.

Starting her career early, Gergana gained extensive knowledge on the different aspects of business after working for her family’s manufacturing company in Bulgaria. An eagerness to learn new languages and succeed in an international setting led her to pursue a career in Austria, where she learned German and had comprehensive new business development training. To further understand the global market, Gergana moved to the UK three years ago, where she managed a range of international customer accounts for a high-profile multinational company. At BM Catalysts, Gergana will be overseeing the company’s customers in the DACH region which includes Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Commenting on Gergana’s appointment, Mark Blinston, Commercial Director at BM Catalysts, stated: “We understand that simply offering a wide range of high-quality products isn’t enough. By expanding our knowledgeable and dedicated export team, it will allow us to continue helping our customers to grow their own businesses through our unwavering commitment to supporting our partners. I’m confident that Gergana’s expertise, global experience and ability to communicate in four languages will be invaluable in our efforts to maintain the highest possible standards of customer service.”

BM Catalysts currently exports to over 35 countries worldwide and is recognised as Europe’s largest independent manufacturer of high-quality aftermarket catalytic converters, DPFs and front pipes.

Your Comments

Dayco LLC names Joel E. Wiegert new CEO

Dayco LLC has announced that Joel E. Wiegert has accepted the opportunity to serve as Dayco’s Chief Executive Officer. Joel is responsible for the global operational performance and strategic direction of Dayco. Wiegert has also been named as a member of Dayco’s Board of Managers.

For the past 16 years Wiegert has held several senior leadership roles with BorgWarner. Most recently he was the President and General Manager of BorgWarner Morse Systems.

His career also included 7 years of working for Dana Corporation where he held engineering and sales positions of increasing responsibilities.

Joel earned a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree from Wheaton College, a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology and an Executive Master of Business Administration degree from Bowling Green State University.

“After a rigorous search, the board concluded that Joel’s outstanding leadership skills, along with his strong track record of success, made him the outstanding candidate for the role,” said Dr. Stephan Kessel, Chairman of the Board of Managers. “Joel has demonstrated throughout his career the ability to work in different environments around the world leading to impressive results.”

Wiegert added, “I want to thank the Dayco Board for the opportunity to join a company with such a long and traditioned history. I am looking forward to leading the over 4,000 dedicated global employees and working together to deliver on our commitments to our customers, investors and to each other. As a team, together we will Move Forward. Always.”

Your Comments

Jeremy ‘Jem’ Seaman joins LKQ Coatings

LKQ Coatings is pleased to announce that Jeremy Seaman, known to many as Jem, has been appointed to the role of commercial transport, light industrial coatings & rail manager. Jem brings significant experience to the role, intending to use his personable approach to build lasting relationships with customers across the UK and Ireland.

Jem originally comes from Wolverhampton and has amassed a wealth of experience over his 34 years in the industry. While much of this has been in managerial roles, he began his career as a paint sprayer for a Ford main dealer before becoming a technical demonstrator for ICI paints in 1986.

From there, Jem’s career took off. He worked for ICI and PPG industries throughout the ’80s, ‘90s and early 2000s. He took on a myriad of roles, working his way from a position as a Technical Demonstrator to National Accounts Manager.

In 2004, Jem switched over, working for a large commercial transport bodyshop based in Peterborough. This time proved invaluable as he learnt about the industry from the other side of the fence.

Jem then spent the next ten years at BASF Coatings and PPG in various senior management roles before ending up as PPG’s UKIE CT & LIC Sales and Technical Team Manager. Under Jem’s watch, PPG saw sustained growth year-on-year in the sales of its CT brands, with comprehensive strategies in place to also grow its LIC sales.

Jem joins the LKQ Coatings team ready to shape the future of the company’s commercial transport, light industrial coatings and rail offering. Mentoring the regional sales managers will be central to his role, as well as meeting customers from across the UK and Ireland.

“I’m excited to be starting this new chapter with LKQ Coatings,” explained Seaman. “There are some great minds and personalities within our national sales team, and I am looking forward to working with each of them. I hope to share with them the industry knowledge I have gained over the past 30 years, bringing customers’ needs to the fore.

“Rest assured, I’m no desk driver! I will be out in front of the customers supporting my team and communicating with the industry. CT, LIC and rail is a competitive market and I will be looking to grow our share by providing customers with extensive support and a personal approach.”

Andy Smith, managing director of LKQ Coatings, said: “We wanted to increase our light industrial coatings market share and expand the support for our regional sales managers. We created this role specifically for Jem, understanding the capabilities he was bringing to LKQ Coatings. His experience, knowledge and personality will enhance our existing client relationships and build new business in highly competitive segments of the coatings industry. He is a fantastic addition to the company and I’m certain he will bring lasting, sustainable growth.”

Your Comments

IAAF hails lobbying success with battery exclusion from Offensive Weapons Bill

The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation (IAAF) is delighted to announce that following intense lobbying over the last year in conjunction with several of its members and the British Battery Industry Federation (BBIF), the Government has now confirmed that batteries will be excluded from the Offensive Weapons Act, avoiding significant implications for the UK aftermarket.

The Offensive Weapons Act is primarily aimed at guns and knife crime but also covers acid attacks, following the spate of incidents experienced in London and elsewhere last year. Prior to IAAF’s intervention, all automotive batteries were within scope of the legislation. This meant it would have been illegal to sell batteries to under 18 year-olds and would have effectively banned deliveries to private addresses, with ramifications for the industrial, leisure and mobility sectors.

Back in January, IAAF chief executive Wendy Williamson met with the Home Office’s Serious Violent and Weapons Unit, in conjunction with the BBIF and IAAF representatives, where they explained the ‘unintended consequences’ of this legislation on the automotive battery sector.

Their main argument was the difficulty in extracting battery acid and there being insufficient concentration to cause permanent harm.

They were able to help convince the Government to change the proposed legislation to exclude all batteries, after the Act was enacted and became law on the 16th May which confirmed the exclusion.

Williamson said: “We are absolutely delighted with the outcome, it is a real success for the continuous lobbying efforts of IAAF and the BBIF. The Government were sympathetic to our views thanks to us underlining the major challenges for the aftermarket sector if battery inclusion became part of the legislation.

“While we are not of course protesting against the main purpose of this Bill, we have helped manage to protect our members’ businesses and the entire UK aftermarket at large.”

Your Comments

Managing ADAS in Repair

The ADAS systems on a vehicle provide critical safety functions. Repairers, therefore, must ensure that any repairs that directly involve, or impact ADAS sensors, are carried out so that the safety and functionality of the vehicle is not compromised.

With the rapid expansion of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) in the automotive market it has become imperative that the repair industry increases technical capability and capacity to manage these systems in all forms of vehicle repair.

It is widely recognised within the industry that without any form of standardisation the automotive industries capability to manage ADAS in repair, of any kind, is being severely compromised. This is a situation that Thatcham believes all sectors of the industry, including repairers, insurers, equipment suppliers and vehicle manufacturers are experiencing and all will be essential parties in forming the solutions required to protect the consumers safety.

With this recognition in mind in May 2019 Thatcham Research produced a position paper entitled “Managing vehicle repairs involving Advanced Driver Assistance Systems”. At the same time Thatcham Research commenced work on developing a Code of Practice that will support and inform the industry to meet this challenge. However, to ensure the outcome provides an implementable solution industry wide consultation is being sought.

By working with industry membership organisations – Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), National Body Repairers Association (NBRA), Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation (IAAF), Independent Garage Association (IGA), Garage Equipment Association (GAE) British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA), The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) and representations from the Motor Insurance Engineers Technical Committee (ETC) Thatcham is seeking to gain industry input. They have invited representatives from these groups to form a committee to support a review of industry feedback to help make a robust and fit for future Code of Practice.

The committee’s aspiration is to publish a code of practice in December 2019. To achieve this, your support as a member of this industry is being sought to provide timely input with actionable comments on the drafts as they are circulated.

The expected timeframes for the consultation are as follows:

  • Committee formed, and principals of consultation agreed: 20th June 2019
  • 1st Industry feedback window: 1st July 2019 to 26th July 2019
  • Feedback to be collated and reviewed by: 27th August 2019
  • ADAS Committee convening: 28th August 2019
  • Refine code to reflect committee agreements: 2nd September 2019
  • 2nd Industry feedback window: 9th September 2019 to 27th September
  • ADAS Committee Convening: 29th October 2019
  • Refine code to reflect committee agreements: 15th November 2019.

A draft copy of the proposed code of practice, which has been indexed to allow for easy reference, is attached as is a supporting spreadsheet designed to structure feedback into a common format. When providing feedback, Individuals are encouraged to think more in relation to how they feel the market should work to ensure all vehicles are repaired safely ensuring all functions and features are reinstated to their expected performance.

Only feedback received in the format given and sent to the adasfeedback@thatcham.org, can be accepted.

ADAS Consultation Letter Final
ADAS in repair COP draft V3.1 – review1
ADAS CoP Feedback June 19

Your Comments

End of Life Vehicles Regulations 2003

These Regulations were introduced to protect the environment by restricting the use of hazardous materials and introducing measures to promote recycling.

The Office of Product Safety and Standards is responsible for enforcing parts 3 and 4 of the End of Life Vehicles Regulations 2003 and is currently trying to raise awareness about their office and the parts of the regulations they are responsible for.

The responsibility for the requirements of parts III and IV of these regulations lies with car and component producers, some of whom will be members of the IAAF.

The Office of Product Safety and Standards has created a leaflet underlining the main responsibilities required by the ELV Regulations and a copy can be downloaded here.

ELV Leaflet

Your Comments

The Alliance Automotive Group host the Golf Event of the Year

The second annual Alliance Automotive Group Golf Event took place at The Belfry on Thursday 13th and Friday 14th June 2019. Despite the days of heavy rain fall leading up to the event, the incredible grounds staff ensured the event went ahead.

The event saw over 100 GROUPAUTO & UAN motor factor members and sponsoring supplier delegates arrive on the Thursday to check-in to their hotel rooms before sitting down to dinner in the beautiful Warwick Suite of the Belfry for an American style buffet and drinks. The evening was kindly sponsored by Ring Automotive and included a live showing of the US Open at Pebble Beach. The evening was a relaxed atmosphere in preparation for the golf day on the Friday.

The days leading up to the event were nail biting as The Belfry worked tirelessly to ensure the course was playable. Once again, the Alliance Automotive Group Golf Event stood out from the usual corporate golf days with several food and drink stations positioned around the course, from the Horse & Crown trailer pub and VW Cocktail Campervan, to a wood-fired pizza pod and crepes van, all sponsored by approved suppliers to the group.

As delegates enjoyed their breakfast and spent time on the driving range the clouds ascended, and the rain persisted, but incredibly at 9.30am as the golfers were led out on the course for the shotgun start, the rain subsided. The sun broke through and the players teed off on the sound of the Claxon for the start of the 4-Ball competition.

The 4-Ball competition saw 18 teams of 72 golfers play their way around the famous and challenging Brabazon course, known for holding the 2002 Ryder Cup. The tees and greens were in great condition and although the bunkers were out of play the free drops were welcomed by the players. The players seemed in great spirit as they made their way around the picturesque course, in sections of the course it was difficult to tell whether the water-hazards were part of the various holes or simply large puddles occupied by ducks and their young ducklings.

After the golf competition on the Friday evening, everyone gathered for dinner and drinks sponsored by Remy, followed by the presentation of the golf awards.

The winners of the golf competition were:
• The Longest Drive winner of a Sonos One speaker sponsored by KYB was John Drinkall of UAN member HIT2014 in Hayes
• The Nearest the Pin winner of a Google Home Hub sponsored by Platinum International was Steve Everitt of Exol Lubricants
• The Winning player picking up the prize of a Garmin S20 Golf Watch sponsored by NGK was Tom Curtis of Shaftec, with a score of 38
• The winning 4-ball team sponsored by Apec Braking was Aaron Leadbetter and Josh Walsh from GROUPAUTO member A & L Components in Liverpool, Aktar Yousef of GROUPAUTO member Direct Motor Spares in Dewsbury and Adam Betteridge from Corteco, each collecting £150 worth of American Golf vouchers

After the awards an indoor chip-in challenge sponsored by Mahle finished off the night and a very successful event. Each player stepped up to take three shots at the prize wall with 15 players picking up a prize, ranging from a Starbucks voucher and a golf glove to a Nike golf bag.

Dan Williamson from UAN member Commercial Components Ltd, commented; “What a well organised and a really great event at The Belfry. It was a shame the weather wasn’t as kind as it could have been but playing the iconic Brabazon course was a tick on my ‘Bucket List’. Coupled with great service from all the staff in the hotel, bar and restaurants, it was the perfect event and I want to thank everyone involved.”

Your Comments

Exol installs defibrillator machines

Exol has installed defibrillators across each of its sites, after becoming certified to connect up the life-saving devices.

The HeartSine Samaritan 360p AED defib machines, which are fully automatic and designed specifically to be used by anyone responding to a victim of cardiac arrest, are installed at Exol sites in Rotherham and Wednesbury.

It means that members of staff or customers that suffer cardiac arrest now have a greater chance of survival with the vital equipment, which works by emitting an electric shock through the chest wall to the heart when a person suffers a cardiac arrest.

Steve Dunn, Exol sales and marketing director, said: “Our staff and customers are our priority, and should anyone ever suffer from cardiac arrest on the premises, it means that a person’s chance of survival improves, simply due to the defibrillator being onsite. It’s essential for every business, regardless of size, and it’s a simple and affordable solution for something that potentially means the difference between life and death.”

Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is one of the biggest killers in the world and it can affect people of any age at any time, even if they have no history of heart problems. For every minute that a victim of SCA is left unattended, the chance of survival drops by ten percent, with brain and major organ functionality affected after just five minutes.

A guide on how to use the HeartSine Samaritan 360p AED defib machine can be viewed on YouTube.

Your Comments

Eminox adds Stoke distribution and service site

Emissions reduction specialists Eminox has expanded its footprint with a new site in Stoke.

It has opened a new retrofit service and support centre, with dedicated aftermarket distribution hub, in Stoke-on-Trent to support the rapid growth of the company.

The new aftermarket distribution facility will service a growing number of distributors, providing a next day service and helping to keep vehicles on the road, while the service and support centre will include three fitting bays and three weld bays, allowing more vehicles to be upgraded.

This investment will ensure Eminox is able to continue its rapid growth over the coming years and help businesses prepare for CAZ and low emissions areas around the country as well as the expansion of the London ULEZ.

Carlos Vicente, retrofit sales director for Eminox said, ‘This expansion of our service capabilities puts us in a fantastic position to meet the growing demand for our SCRT technology. ‘

‘SCRT systems are very complex so we identified a need for more speciality fitting capacity. This dedicated support centre is focused on providing the best possible service and working in partnership with our customers to keep vehicles reducing emissions long into the future.”

Neil Koston, aftermarket manager for Eminox, added, ‘Our customers already benefit from having a high quality, replacement product that is guaranteed to fit and function the same as the OEM DPF, but at a lower price. This new distribution hub allows us to provide rapid response to our distributors and make our DPFs available for next-day delivery to keep vehicles on the move. The DPFs are a direct-fit aftermarket replacement and have passed strict European type approval testing.’

Your Comments

VARTA® Silver Dynamic Auxiliary battery range is now available

VARTA have introduced the new Silver Dynamic Auxiliary battery range in the UK market to address the increasing electrical loads to support comfort features, safety devices, and fuel-saving functions in modern vehicles.
The VARTA Silver Dynamic Auxiliary range provides two different technology solutions — AGM and conventional flooded – to support this increasing electrification especially in dual-battery systems.

Many vehicles with an internal-combustion engine have two batteries; a regular 12 volt starter battery and an auxiliary battery – known as a “dual-battery system.” More than 10% of the car parc with start-stop technology are already equipped with dual-battery systems in order to meet the increased power demands. This percentage is expected to grow even further with the ever-growing number of electrical consumers in start-stop cars. The VARTA Silver Dynamic Auxiliary is designed to support back up applications. Popular vehicle models, such as the BMW 5 series, Volvo V40 / V60, and many Mercedes models are all equipped with an auxiliary battery.

Depending on the make and model of the car, auxiliary batteries service different functions. These include: The increase of the start-stop function’s duration, support of comfort functions during engine start, support and protection of electrical systems (i.e. brake-by-wire) and emergency support. By providing both AGM and conventional types, VARTA offers a “like-for-like” replacement option. When it comes to replacing a weak or defective auxiliary battery, it is vital to rely on a high performing substitute.

Designed to support back up applications
All VARTA Silver Dynamic Auxiliary batteries are specifically designed for backup applications. Both the AGM and conventional flooded are maintenance free and equipped with a flame arrestor. An EN compliant degassing hole is also built-in to enable the installation in the passenger cabin and luggage compartment. The Silver Dynamic Auxiliary AGM is spill and leak proof, and comes with three times the cycle life of a conventional flooded battery. To avoid the risk of malfunctions and car breakdowns it is important to always replace an AGM auxiliary battery with another AGM auxiliary battery.

The Silver Dynamic Auxiliary batteries come in two technologies and three case sizes.

Not sure where the battery is located or which technology to choose?
When it comes to the replacement of auxiliary batteries it is essential to know the different installation positions depending on car make and model.

VARTA provides workshops with the VARTA Partner Portal. Many workshops rely on the portal’s battery position guide, battery selection section, fitting instructions and battery knowledge page. All the information can be found on any internet-enabled device. This ensures that the VARTA Partner Portal is available anywhere and at any time.

Your Comments