Groupauto & UAN Motor Factor Trade Show 2017

Another successful year has been reported for the annual GROUPAUTO & UAN Motor Factor Trade Show. Over 1000 delegates from 200 of the group’s member businesses and 159 supplier exhibitors attended the event at EventCity in Manchester on Friday 6th October 2017.

The 200 member businesses that attended on the day represented the top 80% of group spend and were made up of GROUPAUTO and UAN LV and CV motor factor businesses. In the trade show exhibitors were separated into three zones; CV suppliers, LV suppliers and the FPS Retail Village. This was a new format for the 2017 event with a view to improving the event’s appeal to CV businesses and their requirements.

In the CV Zone, 45 CV suppliers showcased what they have to offer to G-Truck and UAN Truck members; there were some impressive stands, from Racing Trucks to vast tooling displays and a diverse range of products on show. Following the recent opening of the groups’ commercial vehicle distribution centre, the team were also there taking orders on the day and raising awareness of the benefits on offer.

Around the hall it was clear to see that exhibitors had gone to great lengths to offer something more on their stand this year. There were magicians, interactive games, software demos, competitions and giveaways, all designed to attract and engage delegates as they made their way around the hall. Exhibitors were also running special ‘on the day’ deals to encourage sales at the show.

After the trade show over 400 guests attended the Trading Groups’ Gala Dinner and Awards ceremony which was held this year at The Principal hotel in central Manchester. The winners of the 2017 Member and Supplier of Year Awards were:

CV Member of the Year – CMP Ireland
LV Member of the Year (£3m+ approved supplier purchases) – Motorcare Motor Factors
LV Member of the Year (Up to £3m approved supplier purchases) – D&A Factors

CV Member of the Year – Partic Motor Spares Ltd
LV Member of the Year (£3m+ approved supplier purchases) – Fast Parts Wales Ltd
LV Member of the Year (Up to £3m approved supplier purchases) – Autosupplies Chesterfield Ltd

LV Supplier of the Year – Apec Braking
CV Supplier of the Year – Automint

The event ended on a high as guests enjoyed a three-course meal followed by live music from local tribute band Take That 2.

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Increasing weight cap on AFV licences is welcomed

Over the past few years, government has worked with industry to develop ways of reducing emissions from commercial vehicles, one of which is to increase the weight cap on licences for people driving alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFVs).

Following discussions with the Department for Transport and its members, SMMT believes that the proposed change to allow Category B licence holders to drive vehicles up to 4.25 tonnes, providing that they are AFVs, is both practical and desirable.

SMMT believes this proposal will assist government and industry in reducing carbon emissions, as outlined in the Freight Carbon Review. But the question is, to what extent would any licence derogation encourage users to acquire these vehicles? Would it stimulate the OEMs to expand their product range and encourage the development of a conversion market?

In addition, exceeding the 3.5-tonne threshold may require compliance with operator licensing, tachographs, speed limiters and driver CPCs. For larger operators these are unlikely to be seen as issues, but it could limit the potential market.

Nonetheless, SMMT believes that despite these challenges, the payload benefit will more than offset the compliance costs, provide an incentive to change and make a robust business case.

The government is currently consulting on this proposal and would welcome comments, CLICK HERE to go to the consultation page on the GOV.UK website.

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Preparing for the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Part 2

Part 2 of our series on steps all businesses should take in preparation for the GDPR legislation which comes into force in May 2018.

Individuals’ rights

Businesses should check procedures to ensure they cover all the rights individuals have, including how personal data would be deleted or how to provide data electronically and in a commonly used format.

The GDPR includes the following rights for individuals:

  • the right to be informed;
  • the right of access;
  • the right to rectification;
  • the right to erasure;
  • the right to restrict processing;
  • the right to data portability;
  • the right to object; and
  • the right not to be subject to automated decision-making including profiling.

On the whole, the rights individuals will enjoy under the GDPR are the same as those under the DPA but with some significant enhancements. If a business is geared up to give individuals their rights now, then the transition to the GDPR should be relatively easy. This is a good time to check procedures and to work out how to respond if someone asks to have their personal data deleted, for example. Would the company system help to locate and delete the data?  Who will make the decisions about deletion?

The right to data portability is new. It only applies:

  • to personal data an individual has provided to a controller;
  • where the processing is based on the individual’s consent or for the
  • performance of a contract; and
  • when processing is carried out by automated means.

The business should consider whether it is necessary to revise procedures and make any changes.  The business will need to provide the personal data in a structured commonly used and machine readable form and provide the information free of charge.

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PSA collaborates with KBRW

PSA has partnered with KBRW on spare parts distribution as part of its ‘Push to Pass’ plan for profitable growth.

PSA Group’s Business Lab identified KBRW as a company that could contribute the expertise and agility needed for B2B distribution of out-of-stock multi-brand spare parts. With its Distrigo service, PSA now offers over 80,000 spare parts which sees diverse supply chain processes link to a variety of players to more than 130 Distrigo distribution hubs in Europe.

To manage the large number of spare parts not in stock, PSA chose KBRW’s digital Order Management System (OMS), which can integrate a variety of supply chains to optimise logistics management.

The project kicked off in late 2016 with a test phase led by the Business Lab1. After only two months of development, a deployment plan was drawn up on the basis of the conclusive test results. The plan is now being rapidly implemented and will cover all of Europe by mid-2018.

Christophe Musy, executive vice president, PSA Aftermarket, said, ‘After an in-depth review of the solutions available on the market, KBRW emerged as the most suitable partner to help us upgrade our IT systems and then swiftly launch the project for ordering out-of-stock spare parts. We were quickly convinced by the company’s agile, tailor-made and cost-effective approach, as well as by their excellent references. KBRW will help us achieve our objective of offering best-in-class service levels.’

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Marathon Warehouse Distribution northern expansion

To further enhance their current Northern distribution logistical capability, Marathon are adding two new distribution centres to supplement the current operations of their existing Castleford, West Yorkshire warehouse.

Marathon’s new warehouses are well located to serve the North West, (Warrington) and the North East, (Gateshead).

In addition to providing the company’s responsive distribution capability to new customers located in these regions, the two new centres will significantly improve service levels to existing customers throughout the North. The new outlets will importantly provide Marathon’s suppliers with even greater levels of product availability to UK motor factors, via Marathon’s same day delivery service into the UK automotive aftermarket.

The rapidly growing Marathon component product ranges will be fully available. The new expanded Marathon operation will also significantly enhance service levels to EuroFlo customers and stockists throughout the north of the country. EuroFlo is the only emissions manufacture with their own same day logistics platform and this, in addition to their market leading range and quality, helps to deliver the UK’s most powerful emission control programme.

The new sites will be fully supported by Marathon’s Redditch based National Distribution Centre and enhanced by the company’s innovative Empower BTB platform.

The Northern expansion will result in Marathon Warehouse Distribution implementing their frequent same day delivery service to areas accounting for 85% of the UK’s total population. Further expansion of the Marathon Logistics Platform and new product ranges will be announced in 2018.

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Vehicle Safety Recalls: September 2017

These are the vehicles, parts or accessories recalled by manufacturers for a safety reason during July 2017.

You can check for vehicle, part or accessory recalls or find out more about vehicle recalls and faults by CLICKING HERE.

DVSA ref  no Make  & model Issue
R/2017/144 Mitsubishi: iMiEV Vehicle may roll backwards
R/2017/147 Mercedes-Benz: S-Class, C-Class, GLC, E-Class Coupe Left front seat belt pre-tensioner may not meet specification, meaning the seatbelt lock function may not work
R/2017/155 Mercedes-Benz Truck: Unimog Battery line has not been routed correctly, which could produce a short circuit, resulting in engine failure or fire
R/2017/169 Vauxhall: Adam Sunroof glass may detach
R/2017/211 Mercedes-Benz Truck: Actros, Arocs Offside front spring(s) retaining bolts may not be tightened to specification which may affect steering
R/2017/213 Mercedes-Benz Truck: Actros, Antos, Arocs Steering shaft may not be to specification 
R/2017/214 Mercedes-Benz: E-Class & S-Class with AMG Engines Oil leak from turbocharger feed pipe
R/2017/219 Mercedes-Benz Truck: Actros, Antos, Econic Steering shaft may not be to specification 
R/2017/221 Mitsubishi: Fuso Canter Fuel may leak
R/2017/233 Mercedes-Benz: S-Class Some occupant safety systems, such as automatically unlocking doors, may malfunction in the event of a collision
R/2017/234 Toyota: Hilux Wrong driver airbag inflator is fitted
R/2017/244 BMW: Various high-end models Front seat fixing mechanism may be insecure
R/2017/245 Mercedes-Benz: Smart ForTwo, Smart ForFour Front seat fixing mechanism may be insecure
R/2017/254 SsangYong: Rodius, Turismo Front lower ball joint may fail, which could affect steering and cause wheel failure
R/2017/262 Citroen: Spacetourer, Dispatch IV Starter motor supply wiring harness may become damaged 
RCOMP/2017/009 Renthal: Clip-on Handlecars Handlebars may become loose / insecure
RM/2017/026 Honda: CRF450R Gearbox may fail
RM/2017/027 Lexmoto: Hawk, Falcon Brakes may fail
RSPV/2017/011 Polaris: Scrambler 1000 Throttle may stick
RSPV/2017/012 Kawasaki: KVF300CC, KVF300CD, KVF300CF, KVF300CG, KVF300CH Fuel may leak from fuel tap when operated
RSPV/2017/013 Kawasaki: KVF300CF, KVF300CG, KVF300CH Carburettor float may stick causing a fuel leak

Midwest strikes deal with league one club Walsall FC

West Midlands based automotive parts distributor, Midwest Motor Factors, is sponsoring Sky Bet league one football team, Walsall FC for the 2017/18 season.

Midwest will have branding throughout the Saddlers 11,000 capacity stadium and will be following the team’s progress throughout the season.

Craig McCracken with Tyler Roberts outside Walsall FC’s Bescot Stadium

The parts distributor is also player sponsor of new signing Tyler Roberts, on loan from premier league club West Bromwich Albion until January. Roberts, a Welsh U21 international, scored on his debut in a stunning fightback to come from three goals down and rescue a point in a thriller against Bradford.

Midwest Motor Factors is a strong supporter of local clubs and charities in the West Midlands. The parts distributor sponsors Bilston Town FC, Wolverhampton speedway team and makes regular donations to local schools and the West Midlands air Ambulance.

Craig McCracken, group factor manager, said: “Walsall FC is a family-orientated but incredibly professional club and we’re delighted to be a leading sponsor for the 2017/18 season. Our customers have already seen a six-goal thriller in our first sponsored match and we look forward to an exciting season ahead.”

Walsall FC chief executive, Stefan Gamble, said: “We are delighted to have secured the support of local automotive business Midwest Motor Factors for the coming season. The company’s strong links with the community mirrors our own and this, coupled with their innovative ideas, makes for an exciting partnership in the months ahead.”

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Employment Law Update

ACAS Guidance on Parents With Ill Or Premature Babies

Our colleagues at Xecutive Search have drawn attention to new advice which has recently been published to help employers support employees who have given birth to premature or ill babies.

ACAS advice for employers includes:

  • Being compassionate and sensitive in all communication;
  • Being discrete – ask parents what they would like to tell their colleagues about their situation;
  • Making employees aware of statutory entitlements to leave, such as shared parental leave; and
  • Trying to be flexible in giving time off when parents return to work as the baby may have follow up appointments or treatment.

Business Minister Margot James said: “Working parents deserve support at work, and those who have premature babies should expect nothing less than total backing from their employers at what can be an exceptionally difficult and worrying time.”

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ZF provides insight into automatic transmission, electric vehicles and steering calibration at AutoInform Live

Visitors to this year’s AutoInform Live can boost their knowledge of vehicles equipped with high voltage systems and automatic transmissions, as well as gaining a greater understanding of steering geometry calibration.

Held at the GTG Academy in Wolverhampton, on 25 and 26 November, the weekend event provides technicians with crucial hands-on diagnostic training and seminars, with the aim of arming them with the latest repair techniques and alerting them to new technologies, equipment and products available in the automotive aftermarket.

This year’s AutoInform Live has been separated into three groups, designed to streamline and improve the experience for the event’s growing number of visitors.

ZF Aftermarket will be providing a snapshot into its IMI-accreditted courses on these topics during three 90-minute interactive workshops at the event, which takes place at the GTG Training Academy, Wolverhampton, on the 25th and 26th November 2017. AutoInform is the UK’s only independent garage trade event, powered by the Original Equipment Suppliers Aftermarket Association (OESAA), of which ZF is a member. This is the fourth consecutive year that ZF Aftermarket
has supported AutoInform.

With an increasing number of vehicle manufacturers placing electrification at the core of their businesses, independent garages will need to equip technicians to work safely on these vehicles. ZF Services’ [pro]Tech course on high voltage safety focuses on the importance of correct connection and electric vehicle security, together with bonding straps and why Ohms law is so important.

ZF Aftermarket will also being using AutoInform Live to help technicians understand how to accurately set up steering geometry, and complete tasks that sophisticated geometry machines cannot cater for. Incorrectly adjusted steering geometry causes accelerated tyre wear and can affect vehicle stability. Using the BMW 5 series as an example, ZF will demonstrate how to rectify such issues.

The event features a Gala Dinner evening at the Molineux suite with an opportunity to network with like-minded people.

A single day ticket will cost £99 + VAT, while a full weekend pass is available from £195 + VAT.

Those interested are advised to book as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

For more information on AutoInform, CLICK HERE.

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Autosupplies Chesterfield Ltd acquires Butlers Automotive of Barnsley

Autosupplies Chesterfield Ltd has acquired Barnsley based motor factor Butlers Automotive with immediate effect.

The acquisition is the first of its kind for Autosupplies, having grown its head office and Bolsover branch to be one of the largest single branch motor factors in the UK, occupying a 40,000sqft site and employing more than 90 members of staff and managing a fleet of more than 50 delivery vehicles.

Butlers Automotive has been trading in Barnsley for more than 40 years, but in the past year has suffered setbacks with the tragic loss of both its owners Philip and Nicollette Parkin.

Tony Porter, Butlers Automotive director, said: “To ensure the business continues to move forward, it needs to be under the stewardship of a vibrant business that understands the values of Butlers Automotive and that of its customers. We are delighted that family run business Autosupplies Chesterfield Ltd will be taking the business forward.”

David Clarke, Autosupplies managing director, said: “Firstly, I would like to pay tribute to Tony and the staff at Butlers Automotive for their professionalism and courage during a very difficult period.

“We are delighted to have secured Butlers Automotive’s future and can’t wait to get started. The name Butlers Automotive is highly regarded in Barnsley for its customer service and it is a name and brand that we are determined to grow. The business is founded on traditional values and this, coupled with the backing of the UK’s largest single branch motor factor in Autosupplies, means an exciting future ahead.”

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