June 12, 2008
People In The News
Following are personnel changes that recently occurred in the trucking industry:
WABCO Expands Global Operations
WABCO Holdings Inc. announces the launch of two manufacturing facilities located in India and the extension of an existing software design center that are owned by WABCO-TVS (India) Ltd., an affiliate of WABCO and its joint venture partner, a member of the TVS Group.
Currently manufacturing crankshafts, crankcases and vacuum pumps, one of the new facilities is located in Mahindra World City, in the southern outskirts of Chennai, one of India’s first special economic zones. Recently, the foundation stone for the second phase extension of the Mahindra manufacturing facility was laid by Jacques Esculier, WABCO CEO. The company says the extension will double the facility’s capacity, which is dedicated to exporting products and serving WABCO customers worldwide.
Another new facility, located in Jamshedpur, supplies the production lines of Tata Motors by manufacturing brake chambers, spring brake actuators and other braking aggregate parts. The newest WABCO-TVS factories presently employ approximately 150 people.
Situated at TidelPark in Chennai, India’s largest information technology park, the WABCOSoftwareDesignCenter has completed its expansion program, doubling its capacity and upgrading its technology platform to support engineering capabilities. At this location, approximately 85 engineers develop embedded software for automotive applications in electronic braking, stability, transmission and climate control.
ArvinMeritor to Spin Off Light Vehicle Systems
ArvinMeritor announced that its board of directors has approved a plan to spin off its Light Vehicle Systems (LVS) business to ArvinMeritor shareholders, with the Commercial Vehicle Systems (CVS) business remaining with ArvinMeritor.
“The plan to separate our two businesses is the result of a comprehensive strategic review to enhance the company’s long-term value for our shareholders,” says Chip McClure, chairman, CEO and president. “We are confident that this transaction will not only unlock shareholder value, but also will significantly strengthen the competitive positions of both companies and better align them with their respective customer bases.
“Each company will benefit from a greater strategic focus on its core business and growth opportunities, as well as from increased recognition in each of its global market segments. In addition, the separate companies will offer more attractive and targeted investment opportunities, with incentives for management and employees that are more closely aligned with company performance and shareholder interests,” continued McClure.
The planned spinoff of the LVS business – to be named Arvin Innovation, Inc. – would be implemented through a pro rata tax-free dividend to ArvinMeritor shareholders. Upon completion of the spinoff, ArvinMeritor shareholders will own 100 percent of the common stock of Arvin Innovation. Approval of the spinoff by ArvinMeritor shareholders is not required, and the company expects to complete the spinoff within the next 12 months, contingent upon satisfactory financial and automotive market conditions as well as other customary approvals.
“Our decision to spin off the LVS business is part of the company’s ongoing corporate transformation – our 3R strategy to rationalize, refocus and regenerate – that has been underway for the last three years,” McClure says. “Separating these two businesses and successfully implementing our Performance Plus initiatives are major steps in the transformation to build two stronger, more competitive companies for the future.”
ArvinMeritor will remain headquartered in Troy, Mich. Arvin Innovation will be headquartered in Detroit, Mich., at the current location of the LVS Detroit Technology Center, with other corporate offices located in Europe, Asia Pacific and South America.
New Power Heavy Duty Member
The Power Heavy Duty division of Elite Automotive Marketing announces the addition of the following new members: WW Friedline, Inc. in Somerset, Penn., and Rocky Mountain Spring & Suspension, Inc. in Colorado Springs, Colo.
HDAW: New Location, Management Structure
The 2009 Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week will be in Orlando, Fla., Feb. 16-19, at the Orange County Convention Center. Additionally, a new management structure was finalized between the three conference organizers: Heavy Duty Distribution Association (HDDA), Heavy Duty Manufacturers Association (HDMA) and the Commercial Vehicle Solutions Network (CVSN).
“CVSN is pleased to be an integral part of HDAW. This ownership agreement demonstrates that all of the major players are focused on making our industry stronger,” said Ken Duval, CVSN chair and president of Canadian Wheel. “CVSN remains a distributor-focused association. We believe that we will help make HDAW even better because we bring a strong distributor orientation to the ownership and management of the event.”
“The tremendous success of HDAW 08 was the initial product of a great team effort between the HDAW organizers (HDDA and HDMA), CVSN and the HDAW Joint Operating Committee,” said Joe McAleese, president and CEO of Bendix CVS and HDMA’s 2008 chairman. “This effective partnership and co-operation has helped to elevate the annual HDAW conference to a new level, and we expect it will continue to improve with each passing year.”
Added Dave Scheer, HDDA chair and president of Inland Truck Parts: “One of the objectives of HDAW is to have a common platform where distributor issues can be discussed, appropriate plans created and actions implemented. Having CVSN as an organizer and its members as active participants establishes HDAW as an all-industry event where this objective is achieved.”
HDAW is the largest North American gathering for the independent heavy-duty industry, attracting more than 1,800 aftermarket professionals in 2008. According to the announcement, the 2009 show will include: one-on-one meetings between distributors and suppliers; a comprehensive distributor education, best practices and information program; a product expo; an expanded awards program; and multiple networking opportunities.
New VIPAR, Eaton Weatherhead Program
VIPAR Heavy Duty announces a new program to offer Eaton Weatherhead’s fluid conveyance products to its members.
“Eaton Weatherhead is a trusted brand within the industry that will meet the needs of fleet customers across North America,” said Steve Crowley, VIPAR president and CEO. “We look forward to a mutually successful relationship in bringing their product to market.”
Eaton Weatherhead produces hydraulic hose, hose ends, brass products and other products for the fluid conveyance portion of the hydraulics market.
TMD Friction Goes East
TMD Friction has begun manufacturing at its new location in Caransebes, Romania, increasing its production capacity by 20 million to approximately 270 million units per year.
Opening a Romanian facility is part of TMD Friction’s expansion strategy into the Eastern European markets. Initially, the Caransebes plant will produce brake friction parts for the international replacement part market. Production of brake friction parts for original equipment is scheduled to commence in 2009, says the company.
“In 2007, almost 5.8 million light vehicles have been produced in Central and Eastern Europe and the forecast for 2010 sees a growth of approximately 30 percent in this sector. The production increase for commercial vehicles will be even higher. With the new plant in Romania, TMD Friction will take part in this economical success story,” says Derek Whitworth, CEO of TMD Friction.
PPG Announces 2008 Training Courses
PPG Refinish says more than 11,000 students participated in its 2007 training courses. The classes, ranging in subjects from technical training to business management, were held at PPG training centers throughout North America and in affiliate locations in more than 100 key markets.
Numerous training courses will be held throughout 2008 at PPG Business Development Center locations throughout North America. Visit www.ppgrefinish.com or call 800/647-6050 for course descriptions, schedules and locations.
Bendix Focuses on Accident Mitigation
Bendix products are becoming more integrated in trucks and trailers, and the company is promoting combined systems as a route to “accident mitigation.” Officials from Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems and its joint venture with Dana Commercial Vehicle Products, Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake, outlined the developments during the Mid-America Trucking Show.
“If a driver can’t control a situation behind the wheel, our products will help mitigate it,” says Joe McAleese, Bendix president and CEO.
When the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announces its new stopping distance requirements for large trucks, Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake will be ready, says Kishor Pendse, president. The company is preparing to introduce high-performance versions of its current foundation drum brakes, for both steer and drive axles.
If not announced by September as expected, the NHTSA regulations likely will be delayed until the next presidential administration, Pendse says. The effective date of the new requirement is expected to be in 2010.
Bendix built a plant in Bowling Green, Ky., in part to prepare for the new regs, Pendse says. The first Bendix ES drum brake shipped from the plant last October, and air disc brake production began in February. The plant will produce a complete range of foundation brake products for Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake, including air disc brakes, hub-rotor assemblies and foundation drum brakes. In addition, the facility will assemble sub-components and complete foundation brake modules.
Phillips Industries Wins NAPA Award
Phillips Industries won the NAPA Heavy Duty Manufacturer of the Year Award for 2007. NAPA made the presentation to Phillips during its annual sales meeting held in January.
To determine the award recipient, NAPA heavy-duty regional managers evaluate their top suppliers on criteria that assist NAPA in meeting its customers’ expectations. Each supplier receives a rating for: sales promotions, marketing plans, shipping, product quality, local sales support, in-field training, cataloging, communications and clinics-technical information. Phillips Industries received the highest overall rating for its efforts in 2007.
Bob Shively, account manager for NAPA/HVPG, accepted the award on behalf of Phillips Industries. “We’re particularly pleased to be selected as NAPA’s Heavy Duty Manufacturer of the Year because of their position in the market. Phillips strives to meet the expectations of all our customers and this award indicates that we’re on the right track. Of course, we will continue to work to build on this reputation.”
CARB Verifies Integrated Cummins APU
The Cummins ComfortGuard is the first diesel-fueled auxiliary power unit to be verified as compliant with the California Air Resources Board’s anti-idling regulations, Cummins announced.
CARB rules require that any diesel APU used on a truck with a 2007 or newer diesel engine be approved by the agency.
Cummins has sought CARB approval of its ComfortGuard system in two different configurations: a stand-alone particulate filter on the ComfortGuard APU and a Cummins engine installation kit to route the ComfortGuard diesel exhaust gas into the Cummins Particulate Filter. So far, CARB has verified only the integrated kit for the ISX engine, but Cummins hopes to have approval for the stand-alone option soon. The company plans to begin production of both options by the end of June.
Cummins ComfortGuard APUs feature a two-cylinder low-emissions diesel engine and either a regenerative DPF or an exhaust adapter kit for use with 2007 Cummins ISX engines. Equipped with a Cummins alternator, the APU produces 4,000 watts at 120 volts, 60 Hz AC. It also produces up to 40 amps at 12 volts DC for charging the truck’s batteries and powering lights and fans. Cummins estimates an 18-month payback period for the ComfortGuard APU.
“Cummins is the only manufacturer with experience in the design and production of all the components in an APU – diesel engines, diesel exhaust aftertreatment systems, alternators and controls,” says Shawn Wasson, APU business leader for Cummins.
HDX Sets Dates for Technology Conference
The sixth annual HDX Technology Conference is scheduled for Sept. 9-11 at the Wyndham Cleveland at Playhouse Square in Cleveland. This year’s event will feature an additional pre-conference workshop focused on improving existing product data and communicating new information through the Price File Library.
“We’re excited about the workshop as quality product information is becoming a vital part of business processes. Most of this information exists, but this workshop will help our manufacturing companies organize it and help our distributors understand it,” says Edward Kuo, executive director of HDX. “Also, Cleveland is a great location for this year’s conference, as it’s less than a three hour drive for a significant number of our members, and provides a number of quality networking opportunities right there in the downtown area.”