Industry News

SkillsUSA Collision Repair and Automotive Refinish Medalists Named

Industry News - Mon, 06/26/2017 - 12:08pm
High school students from Sentinel Career and Technology Center in Tiffin, Ohio take Gold in both collision repair and automotive refinish contests.

The winners of the annual SkillsUSA Championships in Collision Repair Technology and Automotive Refinish Technology were announced Friday evening, June 23, at the Awards Ceremony of the National Leadership and Skills Conference. The Conference was held last week at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Ky.

Working against the clock and each other, the participants proved their expertise in job skills for occupations such as electronics, technical drafting, precision machining, medical assisting and culinary arts. There were also competitions

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New Vehicle Sales Pace Projected to Fall Again

Industry News - Mon, 06/26/2017 - 11:36am
J.D. Power and LMC Automotive estimates U.S. retail SAAR of 13.1 Million, the Lowest for June in five years.

The new vehicle retail sales pace in June is expected to be lowest for the month since 2012, according to a forecast developed jointly by J.D. Power and LMC Automotive.

Retail sales in June are anticipated to reach 1,168,400 units, a 1.3 percent decrease compared with June 2016. The seasonally adjusted annualized rate (SAAR) for retail sales is expected to be 13.1 million units, a decrease of 51,000 units from a year ago. 

“The auto industry is pacing towards its weakest

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U.S. Property/Casualty Insurance Industry Reports $7.7 Billion Net Income in First Quarter

Industry News - Mon, 06/26/2017 - 11:29am
Net income drops 42.2 percent due to the highest first quarter catastrophe losses since the 1994 Northridge earthquake.

The private U.S. property/casualty insurance industry saw its net income after taxes drop to $7.7 billion in first-quarter 2017 from $13.4 billion in first-quarter 2016—a 42.2 percent decline—and its overall profitability as measured by its annualized rate of return on average policyholders’ surplus fall to 4.4 percent from 7.9 percent, according to ISO, a Verisk Analytics (Nasdaq:VRSK) business, and the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI).

The industry experienced $7.3 billion in direct catastrophe losses—the highest first-quarter catastrophe losses since the

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Thatcham Announces Partnership on Collision Repair Management Training in the UK

Industry News - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 11:29am

According to Thatcham Research, the United Kingdom-based motor insurers’ automotive research center, challenging decisions lie ahead for body shops, as modern vehicles trigger need for specialized repair strategies. The organization announced a new partnership with Business Success Global (BSG) to bring a leadership and management development program to market to help repairers respond to changes in the industry brought about by vehicle technology.

Dean Lander Head of Repair Sector Services, Thatcham Research said, “Gone are the days of accepting every job that comes into the workshop – the investments required to cover all bases are just not feasible. Tough management

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U.S. House Passes Bill Reauthorizing Perkins Support for Career and Technical Education

Industry News - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 11:17am

The U.S. House of Representatives voted yesterday to pass H.R. 2353, the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act. The bill seeks to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act (Perkins) through Fiscal Year (FY) 2023.

According to a joint statement from LeAnn Wilson, executive director of the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE), and Kimberly Green, executive director of Advance CTE, “As leaders of organizations representing the broad community of CTE stakeholders and professionals, we commend Representatives Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL), along with leadership from both parties,

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Axalta Supports Sustainable Auto Repair Program in Tianjin, China

Industry News - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 11:06am

Axalta Coating Systems (NYSE:AXTA) recently collaborated with the Tianjin Vehicle Maintenance Administrative Office to offer advanced, technical education on waterborne coating technology to more than 60 Tianjin automotive refinish businesses. Technicians received training on the benefits of waterborne coatings and learned to improve their application skills.

An Axalta technician demonstrates waterborne technology in refinish training held to support the Tianjin Blue Sky project.

Axalta’s participation contributes to the success of the “Tianjin Blue Sky project”, a local, government-led sustainable auto repair program.

“We’re honored to join hands with the Tianjin Vehicle Maintenance Administrative Office to host the training program,” said

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J.D. Power Initial Quality Study Uncovers Consumer Concerns with Autonomous Vehicle Technology

Industry News - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 10:58am
Initial quality at highest level ever. Increasing problems raise early warning bells for driver assistance technology.

New-vehicle quality is at its highest level ever, improving a significant 8% from last year, according to the J.D. Power 2017 U.S. Initial Quality Study,SM (IQS) released yesterday.

According to the study of nearly 80,000 purchasers and lessees of new 2017 model-year vehicles who were surveyed after 90 days of ownership, the only category to worsen this year is features, controls and displays that include key Advance Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) that auto manufacturers are incorporating into vehicle to help drivers avoid accidents.

According

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Martin-Senour Announces Third Quarter Training Schedule

Industry News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 1:01pm

The Martin Senour Company announced its 2017 third quarter training schedule for its collision repair facility customers, with courses running from July 17 to September 25, at its training facilities nationwide.

The classes will provide guidance and share proven, efficient procedures on an extensive number of topics to collision repair professionals, according to Martin Senour Automotive Finishes Director of Sales Jeff Hartl.

“Getting repairs done effectively and efficiently is the key to running a successful shop,” said Hartl. “Our training classes focus on best practices with quality products like the Pro//BASE refinish system, a segment-leading product line for refinishers who

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Maaco Adds Three Locations in San Antonio

Industry News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 10:33am

Maaco announced the addition of three locations this year in the San Antonio, Texas market.

“We’re excited to see the resurgence of the Maaco brand in San Antonio with new levels of quality service and customer satisfaction,” said Jason Ryan, president of Maaco.  “As we celebrate the 45th anniversary of Maaco across North America, we’re also proud to celebrate our return to serve the drivers of the San Antonio region.”

The three Maaco shops include:

  • Maaco San Antonio – 7490 FM 1560 N., San Antonio
  • Maaco San Antonio – 6412 Walzem Rd., San Antonio
  • Maaco New Braunfels – 1197 Eikel
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TechnaGlass Expands into Idaho

Industry News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 10:30am

TechnaGlass announced it has expanded to Idaho.   The company now offers full auto glass service in Boise, Idaho Falls, Twin Falls, Pocatello, Jackson Hole, Wyoming and surrounding areas. 

TechnaGlass now operates in 12 states and through 44 retail locations.

“The trajectory of the growth of TechnaGlass has focused on attractive markets where we can provide our unique service offering to consumers and also provide services to our strategic partners,” said Troy Mason, CEO of TechnaGlass.

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HLDI Reports Legalizing Recreational Marijuana Leads to More Collision Claims

Industry News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 10:26am

Legalizing recreational marijuana use in Colorado, Oregon and Washington has resulted in collision claim frequencies that are about 3 percent higher overall than would have been expected without legalization, a new Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) analysis shows. This is HLDI’s first report on how marijuana legalization since 2014 has affected crashes reported to insurers.

More drivers admit to using marijuana, and it is showing up more frequently among people involved in crashes. Though there is evidence from simulator and on-road studies that marijuana can degrade some aspects of driving performance, researchers haven’t been able to definitively connect marijuana use

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Traffic Volume Growth Bounces Back in April

Industry News - Thu, 06/22/2017 - 8:00am
After the blizzard in the Northeast impacted March vehicle traffic, April’s growth rate was 50 percent higher. Traffic volume up 1.2 percent for the month.

Travel volume in April rebounded after slower growth in March, continuing the trend of increased driving that has led to the growth in both auto physical damage insurance claims and collision repair industry volume across the U.S. Travel for the month of April is estimated at 271.7 billion vehicle miles nationwide according to the most recent data released by the Federal Highway Administration.

April’s traffic volume represents an increase of 1.2 percent or 3.3 billion

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PNC Riverarch Capital Acquires Painters Supply & Equipment Co.

Industry News - Wed, 06/21/2017 - 10:05am

PNC Riverarch Capital announced the acquisition of Painters Supply & Equipment Co. (PSE), the distributor of automotive, industrial, and architectural coatings headquartered in Taylor, Mich. PSE has 21 branch locations across Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana. PSE serves more than 4,000 customers, including collision repair shops, auto dealerships, fleet operators, and various other commercial and industrial accounts. PSE is a PPG Platinum Distributor and maintains strong market share across its footprint.

“Today marks an exciting new day for the future of Painters Supply & Equipment Co.,” said Patrick Mayette, CEO of PSE. “I am excited to partner with PNC Riverarch Capital

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European Commission Fines Three Vehicle Lighting System Producers €27 million in Antitrust Settlement on Parts Sales to Aftermarket

Industry News - Wed, 06/21/2017 - 9:47am

The European Commission has fined Automotive Lighting and Hella a total of €26,744,000 ($29.78 million) for participating in an automotive lighting cartel, in breach of EU antitrust rules. Valeo was not fined as it revealed the cartel to the Commission. All companies admitted their involvement and agreed to settle.

The investigation concerned the aftermarket segment for the supply of spare parts to original equipment manufacturer or their authorised service networks for passenger and commercial vehicles. The cartel relates solely to the original equipment spare parts market for car models whose production had ended.

Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition

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Service King Welcomes 34 Technicians Apprenticeship Program

Industry News - Wed, 06/21/2017 - 9:42am

Service King Collision Repair Centers yesterday welcomed 34 technicians at seven signing day events held across the country for its Apprentice Development Program. The events signaled the start of a hands-on 52-week paid training program designed to prepare aspiring technicians for a successful career at Service King and in the collision repair field.

Service King’s apprentice program has more than doubled in size since its unveiling in 2015 with more than 40 programs underway in 16 states across the country. The latest signing day comes less than a week after the White House and President Trump signed an executive order

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ASA Leaders Discuss Tax Policy at White House Meeting

Industry News - Wed, 06/21/2017 - 9:13am

On June 14, Automotive Service Association (ASA) board member Bob Wills and Washington, D.C., Representative Bob Redding joined with other automotive industry leaders at the Automobile Industry Tax Reform Listening Session at the White House. Gary Cohn, director of the National Economic Council, spoke to the group about the administration’s tax reform proposals. Wills and Redding stressed the importance of fairness for pass-through entities, repealing the estate tax and lowering tax rates overall.

Attendees also were able to visit with Vice President Mike Pence.

Following the meeting, Wills stated, “After sharing our ideas for tax reform, we were pleased to

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Mitchell and Bosch Automotive Partner on Collision Repair Diagnostic System

Industry News - Wed, 06/21/2017 - 8:02am
Collaboration to deliver Mitchell Diagnostics System, a patent-pending collision repair diagnostic system, that combines an aftermarket scan tool with a workflow application to document pre- and post-repair scans.

Mitchell today announced a collaboration with Bosch Automotive Service Solutions in North America to deliver the Mitchell Diagnostics system, designed specifically for the collision repair and automotive claims markets. The Mitchell Diagnostics system is expected to be available by June 30.

Mitchell Diagnostics will provide an end-to-end diagnostic system that combines appraisal and collision repair workflow applications with Bosch’s most advanced aftermarket scan tools. This should contribute to increased productivity, a smoother

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Opus Group Acquires Autologic Diagnostics

Industry News - Tue, 06/20/2017 - 2:41pm

The Opus Group AB (STO:OPUS)announced June 16 it has acquired Autologic Diagnostics (Holdings) Ltd, the UK-based automotive diagnostics firm. The purchase price is £8 million ($10.1 million) on a cash and debt free basis.

Autologic had 2016 revenues of approximately £16.5 million ($20.8 million) with earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) adjusted for non-recurring items, of GBP 2.6 million ($3.3 million).

After the acquisition the company will continue to operate as a stand-alone legal entity. Autologic has operations in Europe, the U.S. and Australia and relationships with key automotive OEM’s and a customer base of 6,000 accounts located in

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U.S. Body Repair Prices, Auto Insurance and Inflation Through May 2017

Industry News - Tue, 06/20/2017 - 10:55am
Auto body repair prices in May up more than two percent compared to year ago. Auto insurance prices were up 7 percent during the same period.

The most recent government figures on inflation through May 2017 indicate the rate of growth of auto body repair prices continue to increase slightly above the rate of inflation in 2017, continuing the trend first seen in 2016, after relatively slow growth in 2015. Both the price of auto insurance and body repair have continued to increase above the rate of overall inflation during the past twelve months primarily due in part to the

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Driven Brands Selects Medallia to Capture Customer Experience

Industry News - Tue, 06/20/2017 - 10:48am

Medallia, Inc. has partnered with Driven Brands, the parent of company of Maaco, Meineke, Take 5 Oil Change, CARSTAR and 1 800 Radiator, to capture customer feedback and provide insights tailored to each brand and franchise location. Driven Brands, headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, has more than 2,500 franchise locations. Medallia and Driven Brands partnered with LRWCX, Lieberman Research Worldwide’s Customer Experience division, to integrate with CRM and operational data across the organization in order to understand feedback from millions of customers.

Medallia Experience Cloud will easily connect varied information about each customer interaction from all brands and channels, allowing

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