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AUTOBODY IL / IN / IA / KS / KY / MI / MN / MO / NE / ND / OH / SD / WI


Vol. 8 / Issue 4 / January 2019

State Farm Wins in Race Bias Suit Over Repair Shop Contracts

Community Devasted After GM Announces Plant Closings, Lordstown, OH, Will be Hard Hit

by Staff, Bloomberg BNA

by Tara Molina, Kaylyn Hlavaty and Amanda VanAllen, News 5 Cleveland, Associated Press, and others

State Farm Mutual Automotive Insurance Company has won dismissal of a lawsuit alleging the insurer discriminated against a minority-owned auto body repair shop wanting to participate in the Select Service program for State Farm customers. The Fifth Circuit in 2017 affirmed the previous dismissal of most of the discrimination claims brought by Body by Cook and owner Robert Cook. Only Body by Cook’s Section 1981 failure-to-contract race bias claim remained to be litigated in

the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. But the district court granted summary judgment to State Farm Nov. 16, saying that “no reasonable trier of fact could find that State Farm had an available contract” to bring BBC into its Select Service Program during the time periods in question. Two of the dates, November 2011 and March 2014, were too far in the past to bring claims, the court said. As to the remaining July 2014 failure to contract claim, the court See State Farm Wins, Page 13

Collision Repair Industry Associations Make 2019 New Year’s Resolutions by Chasidy Rae Sisk

Since the Babylonians began the tradition of making New Year’s resolutions over 4,000 years ago, people around the world have kicked off each new year by making a promise to improve some aspect of their lives. The collision repair industry is no different, and associations around the country have begun thinking about what they can do to improve their organizations in 2019. Fortunately, some of these industry leaders were willing to share their 2019

New Year’s resolutions with Autobody News. Increasing membership, expanding educational offerings and pursuing legislative initiatives were all largely important to associations and the industry in 2018. Collision repair professionals can anticipate seeing these efforts extend into 2019 with renewed vigor. Elijah Winans, board member of the North Carolina Association of Collision and Autobody Repair (NCACAR), would “like to see our membership, attendance See Resolutions, Page 24

The General Motors plant in Lordstown will stop production in March of 2019, sources confirmed. The closing is devastating news for many in Mahoning Valley, who’ve relied on the General Motors Lordstown plant for more than 50 years. “They get $2.3 billion in profits this last quarter, gonna have $10 billion for the year. This is what they do to us now? After a huge tax cut. What more do you want from the American people?” Congressman Tim Ryan said to News 5.

According to city officials, for every factory job cut, seven others are affected, so it’s not just the estimated 1,500 who work at the plant facing uncertainty come 2019, it’s all of the businesses who call the area home. “There won’t be one neighborhood, one school, one church that’s not affected by this closure today,” Ryan said. “This has been the plant that’s held this community through a lot of ups and downs.” The community considers Lordstown’s GM plant their 6.2 million square foot heart, beating since 1966. Small businesses like Nese’s See Plant Closings, Page 18

Holidays Holidays y Caliber Collision, ABRA (Auto Body Repair of America) To Merge Caliber Collision (“Caliber”) and ABRA Auto Body Repair of America (“ABRA”) recently announced a definitive merger agreement that brings together the companies’ teams, brands and operations to better serve their customers and insurance clients. The combination joins two complementary leaders in the $47-billiona-year collision repair industry. “This combination will allow us to offer even greater satisfaction for our valued customers and insurance clients while creating new opportunities for the talented teammates of both companies,” said Steve Grimshaw, Caliber Chief Executive Officer. “With more than 1,000 stores in 37

states and the District of Columbia, we look forward to providing customers and insurance clients with the flexibility and convenience that come with the broadest geographic coverage in the United States and a full suite of services.” The combined company will offer customers and clients a single solution with more offerings, including dedicated non-drive, express and aluminum-certified and high-line repair centers. Customers will also benefit from increased choice, as substantial opportunities exist to expand the companies’ offerings, such as glass, mechanical, diagnostic See Caliber Collision, Page 26



Change Service Requested

P.O. BOX 1516, CARLSBAD, CA 92018



JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

CONTENTS 1Collision Network Adds VP, Expands Into OH, IL . 9 AASP-MN Announces 17th Annual Race for Automotive Education . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 AASP-MO Gateway Collision Chapter Holds Meeting on 1234F Freon Implantation . . . . . . 6 Abra Adds 2 Body Repair Centers in Knoxville, TN, Area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 ABRA Auto Body Repair Adds 2 Locations in OH . 14 CARSTAR Offers NABC F.R.E.E. Training to KS City-Area Firefighters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

at SEMA Recognizes Collision Industry . . . . 48 Phillips - Subaru of America Prepares to Launch Its Certified Collision Center Network Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Sisk - ARA Hosts Magical 75th Annual Convention and Exposition . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Sisk - Mike Anderson Presents ‘Using the Subaru Technical Information System (STIS) – Part 1’ . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 Sisk - NCACAR Meets With NCDOI to Discuss Alternative Parts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

Community Devasted After GM Announces Plant Closings, Lordstown, OH, Will be


Hard Hit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

2 Veteran Families Receive Cars Through

Davenport, IA, Snow Storm Keeps Body Shops Busy With Damaged Cars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Flint, MI, Insurance Agent Is Fined $25,000 for Selling Fake Documents . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Gerber Acquires Gates Collision Centers in Midwest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Heppner’s Auto Body Repairs Donated Vehicle for WI Veteran . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 IAA Announces Opening of New Flint, MI, Branch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Jefferson, OH, Auto Body Shop Burns to Ground. 13 KABA Convenes in Wichita, KS, for Estimating Roundtable . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 MI Collision Center Owner Receives National Recognition for Restoration . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 MI Secretary of State Targets Fraudsters, Scam Artists . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Record Snowfall Keeps Auto Body Shops Busy as Drivers Collide in IL . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Rockford, IL’s 1st Snowfall Keeps Auto Body Shops Busy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 WAC Hosts Its November Meeting in St. Charles, MO . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Women in Automotive and Collision Expresses Gratitude to Sponsors in IL . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

Anderson - A Reasonable Price for a Vehicle Scan Depends on What You’re Including . . . 42 Attanasio - 3 Shop-Friendly New Marketing Ideas for 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Attanasio - Are You Forgetting About Half Your Customers by Not Catering to Women? . . . . 47 Ledoux - The 1960s – Associations, Leaders and Poor Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Phillips - AkzoNobel Performance Group Highlights Importance of Working on Business, Not in Business . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44 Phillips - How to Prepare and Negotiate Better Deals With Industry Partners . . . . . . . 34 Phillips - SCRS Red Carpet Awards Breakfast

cludes an impressive track record of zero customer complaints. Both locations will be known as Walker’s Collision, an Abra Company, for the foreseeable future. Members of Abra’s leadership team headed to Knoxville to welcome Walker’s employees to the Abra team. Abra first entered the Knoxville, TN, area in 2014 with the acquisition of five centers. “Knoxville is a small market for Abra but has been a steady performer for us,” said Jim Kessler, Abra’s chief operating officer. “Walker’s has a great team and culture that will complement our other centers in the area.”

Publisher & Editor: Jeremy Hayhurst General Manager: Barbara Davies Contributing Writers: John Yoswick, Janet Chaney, Toby Chess, Ed Attanasio, Chasidy Sisk, David Luehr, Stacey Phillips, Victoria Antonelli, Gary Ledoux Advertising Sales: Joe Momber, Sean Hartman, Bill Doyle, Norman Morano (800) 699-8251 Office Manager: Louise Tedesco Digital Marketing Manager: Bill Pierce Art Director: Rodolfo Garcia Graphic Designer: Vicki Sitarz Online and Web Content Editor: Rochelle Beckel Accounting Manager: Heather Priddy Editorial/Sales Assistant: Randi Scholtes

Serving Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin and adjacent metro areas. Autobody News is a monthly publication for the autobody industry. Permission to reproduce in any form the material published in Autobody News must be obtained in writing from the publisher. ©2019 Adamantine Media LLC.

Accuvision 3-D . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Kia Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57

Alloy Wheel Repair Specialists, LLC . . . . . . . . . 9

Killer Parts & Equipment Corp . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Audi Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . . . 50

Laurel Auto Group of Westmont . . . . . . . . . . . 49

AutobodyLaw.com . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

Luther Bloomington Acura-Subaru . . . . . . . . . 43

Autonation Collision Parts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

Maplewood Toyota-Scion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29

Axalta Coating Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2, 17

Matrix Automotive FInishes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

Bettenhausen Automotive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

Mazda Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . . 61

BMW Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . . . 55

McGrath City Hyundai . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46

Bob Hook Chevrolet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

MINI Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . . . 54

Certified Automotive Parts Association . . . . . . . 6

Mitsubishi Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . 54

Charles Gabus Ford . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

MOPAR Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . 36-37

Gerber Collision Acquires TX MSO . . . . . . . . . . 12

Classic Chevrolet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41

Morrison’s Auto Parts. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

GM To Cut Work Force, Halt Production

Classifieds . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62

Nissan/Infiniti Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . 58

Courtesy Subaru . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25

Patrick BMW MINI . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42

Dent FIx Equipment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

Patrick Hyundai . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Dent Magic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

Pro Spot . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63

Eckler’s Automotive . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39

RBL Products. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

ECS Automotive Concepts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

Richfield-Bloomington Honda. . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

Equalizer Industries, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

Robaina Industries, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31

Martin Senour Introduces Pro Filler Body Filler . 16

Gandrud Parts Center. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

SATA Dan-Am Company. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

Phoenix Solutions Group Unveils Digital

NABC Recycled Rides in VA . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 A Profile of the Evolving Collision Repair Marketplace in the U.S. and Canada . . . . . . 52 AASP National Elects New Executive Board During SEMA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 AkzoNobel Turns Over Keys for Refurbished Car Program to NABC Recycled Rides . . . . . 60 Caliber Collision, ABRA Auto Body Repair of America To Merge . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Cars Talking to Cars Happening in Tampa, FL, as Connected Vehicle Program Rolls Out . . . 22 CARSTAR Announces Aggressive Growth Plans for 2019 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 CIECA Welcomes Podium as New Corporate Member . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Collision Repair Industry Associations Make 2019 New Year’s Resolutions . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

Autobody News Box 1516, Carlsbad, CA 92018; (800) 699-8251 (760) 603-3229 Fax www.autobodynews.com editor@autobodynews.com

David Rogers Is the 2018 BodyShop Business/ASE Master Collision Repair & Refinish Technician . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

at Multiple Plants . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 How Collision Avoidance Systems Play a Part in Deer Crashes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 IGONC Learns How To Drive Growth


Abra Auto Body Repair of America recently announced the addition of two new repair centers in the Knoxville, TN, area, which brings Abra’s national footprint to 400 centers in 28 states. Located in the cities of Seymour, TN, and west Knoxville, TN, the centers come from the acquisition of Walker’s Collision Repair, represented by Kingsmoor Advisors, in a transaction that closed Nov. 30. Established more than 25 years ago, Walker’s Collision Repair centers are I-CAR Gold and ASE-certified. The team prides itself on its A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, which in-



Abra Adds 2 Body Repair Centers in Knoxville, TN, Area

Through Digital Marketing. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 JTA Joins FL Polytechnic University on Driverless Vehicle Research . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

GM Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53

Spanesi Americas . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

Presence Management Solution . . . . . . . . . 29

GYS Welding USA. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

Subaru Wholesale Parts Dealers. . . . . . . . . . . 59

Polyvance's New Tool Aids in Removing Dents . . 25

Honda-Acura Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . 32-33

Symach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

Hyundai Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . 51

The Sharpe Collection of Automobiles . . . . . . 47

Infiniti of Naperville . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

Toyota of Des Moines. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

Jack Phelan Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram

Toyota Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . . . . . 61

Samsung Ponders Training Self-Driving Cars With Brain Waves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 State Farm Wins in Race Bias Suit Over Repair Shop Contracts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Tariff Rate Increase Put on Pause Amid New Discussions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 WIN Reveals Theme of Annual Educational Conference & Awards Celebration . . . . . . . . 28

of Countryside . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

VanDevere Kia-GM. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

Jake Sweeney Chevrolet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Volkswagen Wholesale Parts Dealers . . . . . . . 60

Kelly BMW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

YesterWreck . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Kia of Des Moines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

Zimmer Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram . . . . . . . . 64

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


Samsung Ponders Training Self-Driving Cars With Brain Waves by Daniel Golightly, Android Headlines

Samsung’s efforts in the self-driving automotive industry appear poised to continue growing, based on a recent patent for a new autonomous driver training model published by WIPO. The patent itself applies primarily to an “apparatus” and methodology for training a self-driving vehicle’s AI that utilizes machine learning and a combination of human driver metrics and traditional sensor information. The data for the former is tracked and pulled from several sources within the vehicle itself while a human is in control; that includes information such as grip strength and positioning taken from the steering wheel and brake or throttle pedal movement. However, it also seems to include headset-gathered metrics, with Samsung explicitly indicating measurements taken via eye-tracking and a brain-wave electrocardiogram. The former of those is self-explanatory, but the latter is more closely related to and encompasses technologies more often associated with EKG, ECG or EEG measurements taken in a medical setting. Samsung’s description of the ap-

paratus indicates that the electrocardiogram information would be used to assess the changes in a driving environment and dangerous driving circumstances in combination with those other metrics. However, it would also be compiled with the driver’s use of turn signals and their “manipulation” of the vehicle’s horn, stereo or other instruments in order to build a set of patterns in driving behavior to start from and improve on. That would be further underscored by metrics gathered from cameras, LiDAR, radar and navigation data in order to compile a more complete picture from which to create an autonomous driving model for the AI to work with. Background: Although Samsung recently started filling out its portfolio in terms of AI automotive innovations, technologies and platforms, this is a relatively big step for the company. Previously, the vast majority of its ambitions could summarily be collected under the umbrella of “supportive” technologies. For example, at CES 2018 in January, the company introduced a new series of self-driving technologies that sought to make the industry more modular. To that end, the ‘DRVLINE’ platform encom-

passed both hardware and software but could be put together piecemeal and was intended for use by current OEMs in the automotive industry and service industries rather than meant for use by Samsung to create its own vehicles. For the most part, all of its technologies and press releases have centered around a similar concept, building solutions that align with the self-driving vehicle industry without taking on the tasks of building out its own subsidiary to become an active manufacturer. Bearing that in mind, the company has also applied for and received an autonomous vehicle testing license in its home country. Specifically, that was awarded way back in mid-2017, but that doesn’t mean this new patent isn’t geared in the same direction. In fact, this may be among the first indications that Samsung wants to do far more than simply provide components and associated software for others in the race for AI vehicle dominance. Instead, if it puts these patents into place, the company may be preparing to compete more directly with companies such as Alphabet’s Waymo, which builds its own systems for use with another manufacturer’s vehicle platforms

JTA Joins FL Polytechnic University on Driverless Vehicle Research by Bill Bortzfield, WJCT

The Jacksonville, FL, Transportation Authority is continuing its push into the world of autonomous vehicles with a new alliance. JTA is joining forces with Florida Polytechnic University’s Advanced Mobility Institute, which focuses on advancing and testing driverless transportation.

This video screengrab shows a conceptional rendering of the U2C autonomous vehicles that are planned to replace the existing Skyway. Credit: JTA

“AV technology holds great promise for the whole transportation industry, but it’s very likely that public transportation will take advantage of it before the generic passenger car 4

marketplace,” said Rahul Razdan, senior director for special projects at Florida Poly, located in Lakeland. “At the Advanced Mobility Institute,

street level, expanding the system to the sports complex, Riverside, San Marco and Springfield. “JTA is excited to collaborate with Florida Polytechnic University to explore autonomous vehicles and connected vehicle technologies,” said Nat Ford, CEO of the JTA. “Florida Poly and its Advanced Mobility Institute are strong scientific advisors in this ground-breaking technology.” JTA is calling the Skyway modernization project the U2C, which stands for JTA tested this autonomous electric vehicle in June. Ultimate Urban Circulator. Credit: Joslyn Simmons, WJCT News The U2C ties into a larger we pay particular attention to the project with several agencies to turn Florida industries that can absorb this Bay Street in downtown Jacksonville into an “innovation corridor.” It would technology earlier.” The mutual agreement includes bring together a series of cameras, senfostering the development of AV tech- sors and autonomous vehicles to imnology in downtown areas, university prove traffic flow and improve safety. JTA and other local agencies are campuses and other controlled setpursuing a $25 million federal grant to tings. That in turn dovetails with JTA’s help turn the program into a reality. As part of the project, JTA has plan to modernize and expand the Skyway with autonomous electric ve- been testing driverless EVs on a test hicles that would run on existing ele- track it built that runs next to Metrovated Skway tracks as well as on politan Park near Bay Street. Called

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

rather than selling them to the OEM. Impact: Setting that aside, most autonomous training programs depend primarily on the use of LiDAR, radar and cameras coupled with accurate mapping data and hundreds of thousands of miles of test driving. Ordinarily, the AI is accompanied by a human driver just in case the system fails to respond or any softwarerelated issues arise. Samsung’s concept approach is different in that it combines those with a direct real-time analysis of a human driver, going as far as reading their brain waves. While there are a lot of obvious ways that that could go horribly wrong, it may provide autonomous drivers with a much better way to handle non-autonomous vehicles sharing the roadway. Moreover, it could help improve a self-driving vehicle’s “situational awareness” and improve how other unknowns in an environmental setting are responded to if Samsung chooses its human drivers responsibly and carefully. We thank Android Headlines for reprint permission. https://www.android headlines.com/2018/11/samsungself-driving-cars-training-brainwaves.html

the AV Test & Learn Track, JTA has also on occasion offered test rides to the public to show off the potential of driverless vehicles. JTA has also announced another testing phase that will convert a portion of the existing Skyway between Jefferson Street station and its underconstruction transportation center into an elevated test track for autonomous vehicles.

JTA shows off one of its driverless EV test vehicles. Credit: JTA

“We’re excited to collaborate with the Jacksonville Transportation Authority, sharing with them our scientific research and expertise on autonomous vehicle technology,” said Florida Poly President Randy Avent in an email to WJCT News. We thank WJCT for reprint permission.

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


AASP-MO Gateway Collision Chapter Holds Meeting on 1234F Freon Implantation by Chasidy Rae Sisk

On Nov. 14, AASP-MO’s Gateway Collision Chapter held a meeting at Automotive Technology, Inc. (ATI). The meeting kicked off its annual Toys for Tots toy drive and provided valuable information on the new R1234YF freon implementation.

Joe Barton delivered a presentation on the Robinair R1234YF A/C machine and the new R1234YF Freon implementation

According to AASP-MO Executive Director Ron Reiling, “We had a good turnout for the meeting, despite the threat of a snowstorm. Doug Slattery, Toys for Tots chairman, kicked off the toy drive.” Joe Barton delivered a presen-

tation on the Robinair R1234YF A/C machine and the new R1234YF Freon implementation, which Reiling called “particularly interesting.” ATI’s Steve Lange explained the benefits of the equipment as well as its ease of use. Reiling shared, “Body shops should consider the Robinair AC1234-6 as a time-and-resourcesaving investment. ATI and AASPMissouri will be conducting a section 609 certification class, which includes the certification exam that is a requirement to purchase 2lb cylinders or more and to service A/C systems on vehicles with R1234YF. “Word on the street is that AASP-Missouri’s Gateway Collision Chapter has a great line-up of informational meetings coming in 2019!” AASP-MO will hold its Toys for Tots Social on Dec. 12 at Syberg’s Dorsett, and the first meeting of the new year will be held on Jan. 9. For more information about the association, visit aasp-mo.org.

Flint, MI, Insurance Agent Is Fined $25,000 for Selling Fake Documents by Staff, ABC 12

A Flint, MI, insurance agent lost his license and was fined for selling fake auto insurance policies. Dillen Leonard’s license was revoked, and he received a $25,000 fine from the Michigan

Department of Insurance and Financial Services, according to an announcement Nov. 5. An investigation showed Leonard was preparing, issuing and delivering fake certificates of insurance to customers at his agency in Flint. At least 29 people fell victim to the scam. Leonard worked at Advasure 6

Insurance Agency at 810 S. Dort Highway in Flint. He allegedly issued all of the fake insurance documents in July 2016. State investigators say Leonard formatted the fake documents at his office to appear legitimate, with made-up dates for coverage to begin and expire. The victims paid around $100 for the certificates, and Leonard put the money into the cash drawers at Advasure, according to investigators. At the end of the day, he allegedly took the money from the drawers and kept it for himself. All 29 known victims used the insurance certificates to register vehicles at the Secretary of State’s Office. The Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services Anti-Fraud Unit is continuing to investigate claims against Leonard. We thank ABC 12 for reprint permission.

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

KABA Convenes in Wichita, KS, for Estimating Roundtable On Nov. 27, the Kansas Auto Body Association (KABA) gathered in Wichita for an estimating roundtable. According to KABA President Jeff Oldenettel, “We had 30 people attend, and they received the information very well. Many were very engaged, and participation was strong.” During the meeting, KABA members discussed proper documentation of repairs and the importance of accurate representation to the consumer. “We covered proper billing and procedures, but we also emphasized the importance of safety above all else in the repair process,” Oldenettel recalled. “Our Wichita roundtable was on par with our other roundtable discussions. Turnout has been strong at each of our events. “These meetings are important because they remind us that we are all working [toward] the same goals. When we are able to get together to ‘talk shop,’ it just reminds us that we are not on an

island by ourselves.” KABA plans to host several more estimating roundtables in the first quarter of 2019 in various areas across the state, including the Chanute/Pittsburg/Parsons area,

KABA’s estimating roundtable on Nov. 27 was another high-turnout event for the association this year

Liberal, Kansas City, the Concordia area, the Goodland/Colby area and the Lawrence/Manhattan area. The association will also host a trade show in Wichita from April 26–27, 2019. For more information about the association and its planned events, visit kansasaba.com.

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


Heppner’s Auto Body Repairs Donated Vehicle for WI Veteran

Rockford, IL’s 1st Snowfall Keeps Auto Body Shops Busy

by Staff, 5 Eyewitness News

by Mariana Rodriguez, MyStateline.com

Americans across the country recently paid tribute to the men and women who served our nation’s military in honor of Veterans Day. One veteran in Wisconsin received a big thank you for his service.

Heppner’s Auto Body in Hudson, WI, put 100 hours of work into fixing up a car for Eric Grant, who served more than a decade in the Army. It was made possible through the National Auto Body Council’s Recycled Rides program, which coordinates the refurbishing of used vehicles for veterans in an effort to help ease the burden of returning to civilian life. Grant was deployed to Iraq and Kosovo and is now working for a


lawn care company. He said his old car was on its last leg, and he plans to use his new set of wheels to get to and from work. He said he was so touched by the generosity of the community that gave him this incredible gift. “It’s amazing. My heart is overwhelmed,” Grant said after seeing the car for the first time. “I can’t believe this. It’s like I’m in a dream right now waiting to be awakened.” The 2016 Ford Focus that he received had been involved in a prior crash and was donated to Recycled Rides. Many local businesses worked together to fix up the car by donating parts, money and time. “Here at Heppner’s, we have people who have served or family who have served, so to be able to do this today is really special,” said Laura Robertson, vice president of Heppner’s Auto Body. This is the third time the body shop has donated a car to a local veteran. We thank 5 Eyewitness News for reprint permission.

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

The first snowfall of the season made for a slick commute for Rockford, ILarea drivers the morning of Nov. 9, which led to a busy day for auto body repair shops. “As soon as I saw the snow, I knew we were in for a busy day,” said Tina Johnson, president of Alpine Body Shop. A little more than an inch-and-a-half of snow was all it took to create a busy day for local auto body shops. “We see that, when the temperature is hovering right around the freezing mark, the car will go over the snow, then it will just ice up and ‘bingo-bango!’ We have accidents. A lot of them,” said Bill Foley, who works in sales and marketing at Parson’s Collision. Rockford Police said they responded to a dozen accidents per half hour. The slick conditions even forced police to temporarily close a part of Harrison Avenue due to a multi-car accident. Several of the cars involved ended up at nearby auto body repair shops. “Mainly bumpers and that,”

Foley said. “Unless like what happened on the bridge this morning, as they start spinning around. When that happens, there’s damage done all over the car and that leads to more totals in that case, also.” Police said no one was seriously injured, but Johnson said that the same can’t be said for drivers’ wallets. “Minor damage could be just a bumper, but bumper repairs—with the prices of bumpers and the cameras and sensors—they can be as much as $1,500 all the way up to $3,000, depending on the make and model of the vehicle,” she said. Both local shop owners agree: When it comes to bad weather accidents, it comes down to one thing...”Slow down and be cautious. Pay attention to your surroundings and your driving,” Johnson said. “Just slow down,” Foley agreed. “Slow down. You aren’t going to get there any faster.” Police re-opened Harrison Avenue just after 7 a.m. that morning, but drivers were still asked to take extra precaution. We thank MyStateline.com for reprint permission.

WAC Hosts Its November Meeting in St. Charles, MO

Lewis and Clark, Dr. Stewart, shared information on the automoOn Nov. 13, Women in Automotive tive and collision programs at Lewis and Collision (WAC) held its monthly and Clark. Grace, a second-year colmembership meeting at Lewis & lision student, told us that she had Clark Career Center in St. Charles, never considered taking the collision program until she met an instructor MO. According to WAC Vice Presi- who they had recently retired. After dent Jess Crump, “We talked to the meeting him, she was sold.” Meeting attendees also disinstructor of the auto body program, the principal of the school and a stu- cussed the recent career options nights that they had attended and brainstormed ways to attract more students to their booth. “We are investigating interactive, hands-on activities that will engage the students and start discussions on career options,” Jones said. Attendees made plans for their upcoming holiGrace, a second-year collision student, spoke to WAC day gathering, which will about how she decided on her career path be held at V8 Speed & dent currently enrolled in the second Resto on Nov. 29 for an open house year of the auto body program about and sponsor thank you. It will begin the programs available and how to at 5 p.m. and include light appetizers. best reach their students.” Crump noted, “We had a great WAC President Shelly Jones added, “The collision instructor, first year in operation and have offiSean Crader, and the director of cially received our 501(c)4 designaby Chasidy Rae Sisk

tion letter from the IRS. We hope to further our mission in this next year by reaching out to different automotive programs and professionals to

WAC meeting attendees received a tour of the collision shop at the Lewis & Clark Career Center during their monthly meeting

get feedback from them while continuing to talk to young people about career opportunities at as many events as possible. We also hope to expand our membership to keep us diverse and have enough people to attend lots of events.” WAC’s next meeting will be held on Jan. 15 at Ranken Technical College. For more information on WAC, visit: facebook.com/groups/wacstl/.

1Collision Network Adds VP, Expands Into OH, IL

1Collision has expanded its corporate team with the addition of Kelly Cooper as VP of operations. A longtime Chicago-area independent collision shop owner, Cooper also has extensive knowledge and experience as a dealership service and collision operations director. 1Collision President Jim Keller commented, “We are excited to have Kelly on board; Kelly brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our organization. Kelly will work closely with our corporate office team, supporting our network locations throughout the U.S.” 1Collision has also added two new collision center partner locations: CRASH1 Collision Center in Rockford, IL, owned by Bill Wynkoop, and Dick Lumpkin’s Auto Body, in Piqua, OH, owned by Mike Lumpkin and family. Keller commented “Both repair center owners are leaders in their market, and their businesses have delivered high-quality collision repairs and customer care for many decades.”

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


CARSTAR Offers NABC F.R.E.E. Training to KS City-Area Firefighters More than 120 first responders from the Kansas City and St. Joe area attended demonstrations offered by CARSTAR on how to extricate people from today’s advanced vehicles. The National Auto Body Council First Responder Emergency Extrication (F.R.E.E.) training on the latest in technology was offered by three CARSTAR locations in the Kansas City area. CARSTAR hosted three events in St. Joseph and Smithville, MO, and Stilwell, KS, Oct. 16–18. Fire departments from Kansas City, MO and KS, St. Joseph, Smithville, Overland Park, Lee’s Summit, Lenexa, Johnson County, Anderson County, Shawnee Heights, Louisburg, Winfield, Rushville, King City, Maryville, Warrensburg, Fishing River and Falls City attended one of the three events. Steve Hahn, owner of CARSTAR Metcalf, said CARSTAR is committed to helping our community become a safer place to live. “Hosting the NABC F.R.E.E.™ events are a way for CARSTAR to further serve the Kansas City area,” added Hahn. Twelve salvage vehicles were

donated by State Farm for firefighters to practice “cutting” techniques. “State Farm is proud to support this program that will help prepare our first responders to handle the emergency situations they’ll face,” said Kevin Gamble, State Farm community and media relations. “We make it our business to help build safer, stronger and better-educated communities.” In crashes where minutes can spell the difference between life and death, first responders to the accident scene need up-to-date information so they can act quickly and safely. Knowing where and how to efficiently cut, pry and extricate can make the difference in saving precious minutes and lives as well as the safety of the first responders. Keeping first responders up-todate on the latest new technology in vehicles is a challenge for every local fire department. The NABC First Responder Emergency Extrication program (F.R.E.E.™) helps first responders stay abreast of the rapid changes in vehicle design. Highstrength steel, airbags, advanced restraint systems, onboard technology and safety around alternative fuel vehicles are all covered in the pro-

Gerber Acquires Gates Collision Centers in Midwest

gram. The growing popularity of high-voltage hybrid and electric vehicles and the many safety concerns surrounding these vehicles makes this program a necessity. Alternative fuel systems present different challenges when first responders arrive at the scene of an accident. Electric cars, hybrid cars and natural gas vehicles have fuel systems that pose dangers for first responders if need arises to cut or pry the vehicle for rescue. Billy Hurt from Alex Air Apparatus was the instructor at all three events. The program displayed key products used to increase the speed at which occupants can be removed safely from damaged vehicles. Hurst Jaws of Life is a rescue equipment manufacturer that has partnered with the National Auto Body Council. Hahn said, “Our training and experience in repairing vehicles also translates into knowledge of how to ‘cut’ these vehicles in an emergency scenario. Hurst knows the tools and techniques for extrication. CARSTAR body shops know the vehicles.” The First Responder Emergency Extrication (F.R.E.E.™) program is a project of the National Auto Body Council.

Gerber Collision & Glass recently announced the acquisition of a multi-store operation consisting of 18 collision repair centers, including two intake centers, located in the Wisconsin and Northern Illinois markets. The centers, located in the Wisconsin cities of Madison (4), Sun Prairie (3), Beaver Dam, Janesville, Middleton, Monroe, Portage, Racine, Sauk City, Stoughton, Watertown and the Illinois cities of Belvidere and Freeport, have operated as Gates Collision Centers since 1990. The majority of these centers are located near Madison, WI, which is the capital and second-largest city in the state and the primary city in a metropolitan area of nearly 600,000 people. “This significant acquisition broadens our footprint and allows us to introduce our brand and leading service model to new markets and better assist our insurance clients,” said Tim O’Day, president and COO of Gerber Collision & Glass. “We look forward to maintaining the high level of service provided at these locations.”

AASP-MN Announces 17th Annual Race for Automotive Education The 17th Annual Race for Automotive Education is planned for Jan. 8, 9 and 10, 2019 at ProKart Indoor Racing in Burnsville, MN.

The event serves as the primary fundraiser for the AASP-MN Automotive Education Fund, which provides financial resources to support automotive students, enhance automotive programs and raise awareness of career opportunities in the automotive service industry. Since its inception, the fund has disbursed over $223,000 directly to students enrolled in au-

tomotive programs through the association’s scholarship program and SkillsUSA competition. AASP-MN members and other industry supporters will organize teams to compete in kart racing at speeds of up to 40 miles per hour. By the time the final checkered flag waves, the Race for Automotive Education is expected to have raised over $11,000. The majority of that money is earmarked to fund scholarships for students enrolled in a NATEF-certified automotive program (collision or mechanical) in the state of Minnesota. Scholarship awards will be announced in the spring of 2019.

For more information, contact Judell Anderson at the AASP-MN office at (612) 623-1110 or (800) 852-9071 or log on to www.aaspmn.org.

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Gerber Collision Acquires TX MSO

Gerber Collision & Glass recently announced the Dec. 14 acquisition of a multi-store operation consisting of nine collision repair centers located in Texas. The centers had operated as Paceline Collision Centers since 1998. The centers are located in Abilene, Copperas Cove, Killeen (2), Lampasas, Lubbock (3) and Marble Falls. “This significant acquisition strengthens our presence in Texas and allows us to introduce our brand and leading service model to new markets and better assist our insurance clients,” said Tim O’Day, president and COO of Gerber Collision & Glass. “We look forward to these new teams maintaining the high level of service provided at these locations.” Gerber Collision & Glass is continuously looking to add new collision repair locations to its existing network in Canada and the U.S. Interested collision repair center owners are asked to contact Stephen Boyd at (204) 594-1776 or stephen.boyd@boydgroup.com.


Women in Automotive and Collision Expresses Gratitude to Sponsors in IL by Chasidy Rae Sisk

On Nov. 29, Women in Automotive and Collision (WAC) hosted an open house and sponsor thank you event at V8 Speed and Resto in Red Bud, IL.

and Kelle Oeste, WAC secretary. While Kelle organized the food and collected attendance prizes, Kevin and the V8 team took attendees on facility tours and discussed the shop’s current projects. ABRA’s Julie Hemann, who serves as WAC’s treasurer, donated a photo booth for the open house event.

WAC member and sponsor Don Peters of PPG poses with WAC officers

WAC Vice President Jess Crump (right) hands out prizes to winning attendees

Planned as a means to express gratitude to the association’s sponsors, the event included a tour of the V8 facilities, appetizers, an opportunity to network and a presentation to provide information on WAC and thank their sponsors. According to WAC President Shelly Jones, “It was a great turnout for the open house and sponsor appreciation with over 50 people in attendance. It was a great celebration.” V8 is owned by Kevin Oeste

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

troop leader, are working out the details for WAC to attend a Girl Scouts event to talk about the industry or have the scouts tour the shop with a hands-on activity.”

Doug and Gene Slattery (father and son) of ATI hold up the thank-you license plate they received from WAC for their sponsorship

Jones shared, “Several customers of V8 and members of the community attended and learned more about WAC and our mission. One family has a daughter in Girl Scouts whom they brought along. Kelle and the girl’s mother, the

During the event, WAC recognized sponsors who have helped the association become so successful. Among them were Doug and Gene Slattery from ATI, who received a personalized license plate thanking them for supporting the association’s efforts. Gene reported, “The night was perfect.” For more information on WAC, visit the WAC Facebook page: facebook .com/groups/wacstl/

Jefferson, OH, Auto Body Shop Burns to Ground by Warren Dillaway, Star Beacon

A raging fire destroyed a long-time auto body shop on Route 46 just north of the Route 307 intersection the evening of Nov. 10 in Jefferson, OH.

Mihely’s Body Shop was destroyed Nov. 10 when a fire ripped through the business located just north of Route 307 on Route 46 in Jefferson, OH. Credit: Warren Dillaway, Star Beacon

Multiple fire departments fought the blaze at Mihely’s Body Shop late that evening and well into the next morning, said Jefferson Fire Chief Thomas Lachey. He said firefighters from Jefferson, Ashtabula Township, Ashtabula, Dorset, Austinburg and Plymouth

Continued from Cover

tigation,” said SFMO Investigator Jeff Koehn. “The insurance company will be bringing in electrical investigators.” Lachey said firefighters were on the scene until 3:40 a.m. and went back to the station to prepare the trucks for operation. They completed that task around 6 a.m. and were called out for a rekindle about 6:15 a.m. Firefighters were on the scene most of the morning and into early afternoon, combing through the twisted remains of the structure. Lachey said the business is insured, but the operation was a total loss. He said several vehicles inside the building were destroyed as well. Many vehicles were lined up outside the building. Most didn’t appear to be Jefferson, OH, Fire Dept. member Kyle Blon sifts through damaged by the fire but prorubble in Mihely’s Body Shop on Nov. 11 after a fire ripped vided a challenge for firethrough the building late Nov. 10. Credit: Warren Dillaway, fighters battling the blaze. Star Beacon The investigators were from the Jefferson Fire Department, busy reviewing the damage, and firethe chief of the Ashtabula Township fighters were still dealing with “hot Fire Department and the State Fire spots” around 11:30 a.m. on Nov. 11. We thank Star Beacon for reprint Marshal’s Office, Lachey said. “Undetermined and under inves- permission. fire departments battled the blaze. He said 27 firefighters were involved in fighting the fire. The fire did not result in any injuries. Reports of the fire began around 11:16 p.m. Nov. 10. When firefighters arrived, they found the structure fully involved in flames, said Lachey. The cause of the fire is under investigation by two investigators

State Farm Wins

noted that BBC is located in Slidell, LA, and that State Farm said it only maintained five active Selective Service repair shop contracts at a time in the Slidell area. Not only was BBC unable to prove untrue State Farm’s claims that it had a firm five-contract ceiling for that area, but the repair shop was also unable to point to a non-minority entity that was treated more favorably by State Farm at the time of the July 2014 request, the court found. Another repair shop had been brought into the network in May of 2011, but the court determined that the three-year difference was too remote in time to “create a disputed issue of fact” regarding the company’s alleged discriminatory motives for the time period around BBC’s July 2014 request to join the auto repair network. Stone, Pigman, Walther, Wittmann, LLC, represented State Farm. Stephen Smith, New OrSee State Farm Wins, Page 18

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


MI Secretary of State Targets Fraudsters, Scam Artists

With the prosecution and conviction of three individuals on federal conspiracy and identity theft charges in September, the Secretary of State’s Office added yet another successful outcome to what has become a formidable track record of fighting fraud, Secretary of State Ruth Johnson said. In several notable consumer protection cases since 2011, the department:

Wrench with several law enforcement agencies, which led to the closure of several auto repair shops that were operating without a license or certified mechanics. Secretary of State staff works each day to respond to consumer complaints and ensure that Michigan’s

• Worked with the Michigan State Police to arrest individuals who offered money to a branch office clerk to provide driver’s licenses illegally.

• Shut down a truck driving school for encouraging students to apply for commercial driver licenses with fake residency documents.

• Referred a woman for criminal prosecution who was making $30,000 a month selling fake insurance policies out of an office at a church. • Nabbed a used auto dealer who had forged a police officer’s signature on title documents. •

Coordinated Operation Torque

Credit: Image courtesy MGN Online

thousands of auto repair facilities and dealerships are compliant with the law. Since 2015, the Secretary of State has shut down 77 illegal repair shops and 129 auto dealerships. Nearly 500 criminal investigation referrals have been made by the Office of Investigative Services during that time, primarily to the Michigan State Police Fraud Investigation Section.

ABRA Auto Body Repair Adds 2 Locations in OH Abra Auto Body Repair of America recently announced the addition of two new repair centers in the Cleveland, OH, suburbs.

Located in the cities of Bedford Heights and Euclid, the centers come from the acquisition of two Mayfield Collision Centers in a transaction that closed Nov. 12. Established in 1989, Mayfield was named one of 10 Top Body Shops in 2014 by ABRN, which recognized Mayfield for its commitment to customer care, technical training

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and employee development. The centers are also known for Guitar Mania—a community art project that has raised $2 million for two charities: United Way and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Education Programs. Members of Abra’s leadership team will be heading to Cleveland to welcome Mayfield’s employees to the Abra team. Abra first entered the Ohio market in 2014 and has since grown to 16 centers in the Cincinnati and Dayton areas. These two locations are the company’s first in the Cleveland area. “We’re proud of the success we’ve had in southern Ohio, and building a statewide presence just makes sense to us,” said Jim Kessler, Abra’s chief operating officer. “We look forward to introducing the Abra name to the community.”



JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

There are more than 9,000 registered repair facilities and nearly 5,700 auto dealers in Michigan. “Our consumer protection efforts are stronger than ever,” Johnson said. “We have improved this department’s ability to go after the fraudsters and scam artists who rip the people of Michigan off for millions of dollars every year. I encourage anyone with fraud complaints or tips to contact us. We are taking action to hold those who break the law accountable.” Johnson formed the Fighting Auto Insurance Rip-Offs (FAIR) task force in 2013 after her staff conducted a one-day snapshot of 15,000 registration renewals done at branch offices and discovered that more than 16 percent of the insurance certificates checked that day were fraudulent. Some of those fake policies were purposely presented as proof of insurance, while others were purchased by unsuspecting drivers who believed they were insured, when in fact they were not. Johnson also implemented training for branch staff to better spot

fakes and tough new policies on canceling plates. Additionally, the department improved its technology for data analysis and tracking and its intra-agency sharing of data based on recommendations from the task force. As a result of the changes, the number of fraudulent insurance certificates submitted to the department has decreased. The Office of Investigative Services launched in April 2015 to bring all investigative and regulatory enforcement services within the department into a unified operation. OIS is led by Darryl Hill, the retired former head of the Special Investigation Division of the Michigan State Police, and is committed to protecting the integrity of all Secretary of State programs and documents and investigating reports of fraud. In 2017, Johnson introduced a toll-free telephone tip line for consumers to report fraud. Anyone who wants to pass on a tip about possible fraudulent activity involving driver’s licenses or other Secretary of State services is encouraged to call the Office of Investigative Services at 1-844372-8356. Tips can also be emailed to sos-ois@michigan.gov.

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


How Collision Avoidance Systems Play a Part in Deer Crashes by Cearron Bagenda, WBAY-TV

“During the beginning of the week on Mondays and Tuesdays, we’re getting two to three cars in a day, it seems,” said Mark Williams, owner of Williams Auto Body in Ashwaubenon, WI.

A car gets worked on at Williams Auto Body in Ashwaubenon, WI, after hitting a deer.

Body repair shops in the Green Bay area said they see an increased number of car-deer collisions this time of year. From the summer of 2017 to 2018, Wisconsin was ranked fourthhighest in the country for car-deer collisions, according to a new State Farm Insurance study. With it now being breeding and hunting season, deer are constantly on the move. It brings up the question, could newer technology in cars, like collision


avoidance systems, prevent drivers from hitting a deer? A collision avoidance system allows a car to deploy autonomous braking to prevent a crash. Simply put, it hits the brakes if you don’t. “Most cars use radars, some use lasers, [and] some cars are even employing cameras too—forward-looking cameras to detect what the object is in front of it,” said Ben Hendricks, an automotive technology instructor at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. The system takes into consideration the speeds at which you and the person in front of you are going in order to detect whether a crash will happen. “It would first warn the driver, and then if the crash were still imminent at that point, it could employ autonomous braking,” said Hendricks. Hendricks said cars with a collision avoidance system won’t necessarily stop due to a deer darting in front of it, but if the deer were standing still and speeds were low, both the deer and the car could be spared. “In addition to the radar, some can also use forward-looking cameras to detect objects, so I guess if a deer were standing still, it could recognize that there is a deer and employ that

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

warning and/or the autonomous braking,” added Hendricks. Hendricks expects crash avoidance systems to become a required safety feature in a few years but said they can’t be fully relied on to avoid deer crashes just yet. “Because of how unpredictable a deer can be, I don’t think that they’re designed to avoid them because that means the car has to be looking off to the side, too,” said Hendricks. Experts say deer crash repair costs are higher with newer cars because camera, laser and sensor technologies are built into the bumpers, mirrors and windshields. Damage needs to be identified through a scan before shops can do any repair. “The computers control just about everything on cars these days, and until we do that scan, we won’t know. That [right] there just increases the cost already, just by having to do that scan,” Williams added. Williams said a deer crash is usually covered by comprehensive insurance. Experts say that if you don’t have any other choices, it’s always better to hit the deer than to swerve. We thank WBAY-TV for reprint permission.

Martin Senour Introduces Pro Filler Body Filler

PRO Filler Body Filler from Martin Senour is a premium line of lightweight filler, fiberglass reinforced filler and putty. The professional-grade product offering provides reliable, high caliber performance in any repair. Body shops seeking a straightforward, cost-effective solution to auto body repair look to the PRO Filler line for a quality product that will promote shop productivity. With professional grade adhesion, elimination of micro-pinholes and industry-leading sanding properties, PRO Filler is a versatile system fit for any repair job. “The complete PRO Filler line allows for seamless repair,” said Nick Dowling, product manager, Martin Senour. “It’s an asset in any job that requires a product with strong adhesion and smooth application.” The PRO Filler line is Martin Senour’s premium body filler technology. Its performance-driven formula provides dependable application that contributes to increased productivity.

MI Collision Center Owner Receives National Recognition for Restoration by Bill Wehrenberg, News-Review

The village of Walloon Lake, MI, has seen numerous changes and improvements over the past several years. One company has now received several national recognitions for its work. Steve Whittaker, owner of Lake Area Collision, located at the intersection of US 131 and M-75 , spent more than two years on the initial restoration of a 1964 Pontiac GTO 389 Tri-Power, the first year GTOs were produced. The car originally received a Gold Class rating when it was first judged in 2011. This classification is reserved for the very few vehicles that are successfully restored to their original factory specifications and conditions exclusively with parts and equipment of that year. Since then, Whittaker and his staff at Lake Area Collision have torn down and rebuilt the Nocturne Blue convertible several more times to correct parts of the car that were not 1964 vintage. These efforts paid off in 2016 when the car was recognized as the Grand Champion at the 2016 GTO

Association of America National Convention in Seattle, Washington and the Top of Class award at the 2016 Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals in Chicago. In 2017, Whittaker was invited to display his car at the exclusive Concours d’Elegance in Plymouth. This show is by invitation only and

Steve Whittaker, along with his Grand Award-winning 1964 Pontiac GTO 389 Tri-Power, at the Concours d’Elegance in 2017 in Plymouth

is reserved for only the top cars in all classes and vintages of automobiles. The car received the ultimate recognition at this event: the Grand Award for “Most Significant General Motors” vehicle at the show. This year, the vehicle was awarded the

“Best of Show” at the R.E. Olds Museum Car Capital Auto & Bike Show in Lansing. The name GTO is the abbreviation of the Italian term “Gran Turismo Omologato,” which means a general production automobile that also qualifies for racing competitions. One of only 5,000 convertibles made that year, Whittaker’s car was only used for five years before it was relegated to a salvage yard. He purchased the GTO in 1995 for $100 primarily because his 10-year-old son thought convertibles were cool. The GTO is a classic example of what are known as the “muscle cars” and is often considered the grandfather of this classification. The V8 engine and its three carburetors produce 348 hp, which by today’s standards would be frowned upon by the Environmental Protection Agency. Whittaker was able to find parts for the restoration at salvage yards, swap meets, Pontiac supply companies and the internet. He even purchased a second salvaged 1964 GTO just for parts. When asked what it takes to have a national champion, Whittaker

stated, “Money, time and an understanding spouse.” Whittaker opened Lake Area Collision in 1985 after attending Ferris State University and working at other auto repair shops for experience. His company has 16 employees and occupies 12,000 square feet. The company is an I-CAR Goldcertified collision repair facility. Unfortunately for car enthusiasts, the company does not do restorations. When asked why, Whittaker said, “The cost of doing a professional restoration dramatically exceeds what owners are willing to invest ... in most instances, it costs at least twice what a restored car is worth once it is done. I stopped keeping track of the hours on my GTO once we reached several thousand. In addition, if you restore a car to the Gold classification, you really cannot drive it for recreation if you want to keep it in show condition.” Such an investment has not dampened Whittaker’s enthusiasm; he has three more GTOs sitting in his garage awaiting new lives. We thank News-Review for reprint permission.

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


Continued from Cover

Plant Closings

County Cafe, a popular local breakfast and lunch spot, were abuzz with Monday’s news of uncertainty. “This community is going to go down. This place. Lots of people just bought homes,” former General Motors employee Carmela Deno told News 5. Deno worked at the Lordstown plant for more than 40 years before retiring over the summer after two of the three shifts in the factory, amounting to 3,000 jobs, were cut. Nearly 600 employees at the plant opted to retire early or accept a buyout after the company announced the elimination of the second shift. Deno raised her family, that now includes grandchildren, here. “My work helped me raise my son,” she said. Some of her family still works there, she said. “My nephew is very sad. He has three kids.” Officials said folks who work at the plant were called into a meeting Monday where they were told the plant will be idle as of March 1, the Chevrolet Cruze will stop production, and no new product will be allocated. In April, GM said a decline in Chevrolet Cruze sales is to blame for the employee reduction at the Lordstown plant. The decision is part of the company’s steps to improve business performance, realign manufacturing and reduce salaried workforce, according to their press release. Lordstown Mayor Arno Hill and the President of the Union (UAW Local 1112) David Green are both holding onto the glimmer of hope General Motor’s choice of words offered. “It was non-allocated or in-allocated and that just means that there’s no product to announce to put in this Continued from Page 13

State Farm Wins

leans, represented Body by Cook. The case is Body By Cook, Inc. v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 2018 BL 424655, E.D. La., No. 152177, 11/16/18. 18

Record Snowfall Keeps Auto Body Shops Busy as Drivers Collide in IL by Brittany Toolis, MyStateline.com

The snowfall that took place on Nov. 25 set several records in Rockford, IL. It became the snowiest November day on record with 11.7 inches recorded at the airport at midnight.

November 2018 set the record for the most snow in November ever with a total of 15.6 inches throughout the month as of Nov. 26, not including what fell past midnight Nov. 25. The heavy snowfall created hazardous driving conditions for travelers, a busy night for the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Deputies and a busy Monday for local auto body shops.

plant right now,” Mayor Hill told News 5. “I’m holding out for the best.” “We’ve got a great workforce and we’ve proven ourselves. So, I am hopeful that between March and September we get some positive news,” Green said. It’s that hope that will keep this area alive for the next few months. “I hope we get a new car. I don’t care what it is. As long as we get a new product. For these people to get back to work,” Deno said. GM announced Monday that it is slashing 14,700 factory and whitecollar jobs in North America and closing five factories, including the Lordstown factory, according to the Associated Press. Reproduced with permission. Published Nov. 19, 2018. Copyright 2018 by The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (800-372-1033) <http:// www.bna.com>


JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

“Since probably 3:30 p.m. yesterday afternoon, we’ve been getting motorist assist calls, people sliding into the ditches, minor accidents,” said Deputy Chief Dominick Barcelona. “We’ve been to dozens of them. “We had a lot of our squads getting stuck, [and] a lot of the tow trucks that were going out were getting stuck; so yeah, it was not a good night to be driving.” The snowy conditions turned traffic into bumper cars on the streets. Tony Arbisi, vice president of Crash 1 off Alpine, said, “You’ll see undercarriage damage [and] suspension damage. You’ll see lowerbumper damage ... from driving over snow banks. Sometimes [it’s] rims from impacting something hard on the other side. If it gets really bad, grills [and] head lamps. It depends on what they hit when they go off; it can go all the way into the hood.” A minivan got stuck Nov. 26 trying to enter Route 20 from Mon-

tague, causing several drivers to stop and help—one of whom got stuck himself. Conner and Joanna Schexnayder, who were in a similar situation on Nov. 25, pulled over to help and get the stuck cars free. “We have a shovel in the back of our truck. We had trouble getting home last night and got stuck twice, and we figured we could help,” Conner said. “If you live in the area, and you know what it’s like to be stuck in the snoz... you want to stop and help everybody you can,” Joanna agreed. While the main streets in Rockford were cleared, the residential streets and rural roads were still an area of concern for drivers as of Nov. 26. We thank MyStateline.com for reprint permission.


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autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


Media and Publicity for Shops with Ed Attanasio

3 Shop-Friendly New Marketing Ideas for 2019 So, you’ve tried it all: conventional advertising, email marketing, digital advertising—maybe you even bought a billboard or hired a plane to write your name in the sky. Now it’s time for you to devise another plan to re-energize your efforts while embracing the ever-changing technology within the world of digital marketing. I always tell body shops to work in threes because I’ve seen positive results from doing it that way. Marketing is a huge universe that can overwhelm you quickly, so doing things in handfuls rather than armfuls keeps your marketing focused and targeted.

Vlogs A vlog is a blog that contains primarily video content and represents a small but rapidly growing segment of the blogosphere. Some shops that


have been blogging for years have included video content from day one, but most of them are just joining the vlogosphere now. Vlogging is becoming more popular as equipment becomes more affordable and editing becomes easier with a wide range of user-friendly software programs that you and I can use without being a techie. Both Yahoo! and Google now feature large video sections and many MP3 players support video, so you can create and post vlogs within minutes. Anyone with a video-capable camera and a computer with a highspeed connection can create vlogs to publish and distribute online. Many vloggers use their personal devices in the paint booth or out on the shop floor, for instance, and post content without any editing, in most cases. Painters and body technicians have been using vlogs for quite

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at era39@aol.com.

some time now with great success. If you check out YouTube, you’ll see that The Gunman, Refinish Network, Motivated Painters and Donnie Smith are extremely popular YouTube Channels that get a ton of traffic. The ones that seem to be viewed the most are 2–3 minutes in length, direct and focused on one particular subject rather than several topics. People have short attention spans because they’re bombarded by media all day long, so the best advice is to create vlogs that are simple and to the point. Gabriel Merino, a painter and the creator of Motivated Painters, started out with one simple video that he produced on his cell phone back in mid-2016. Since then, painters from 128 different countries have flocked to his YouTube channel. He first began producing videos with his Android phone and then with a GoPro

camera, he said. “I started to make videos showing the struggles I was having with painting and techniques,” he said. “I was shocked that even one person would watch my first video at first. I didn’t have a clue about how to do it, and the video is terrible, but it’s still up on YouTube. After a while, I got better at it and the production values improved. Our viewers are shocked because they think that we used expensive video equipment and sophisticated editing programs to make them. The technology is easy to attain, and you don’t need to be a videographer or a film editor to do vlogs that look great.” Online Advertising Online advertising has gained popularity among more and more shops throughout the past few years because it’s an ideal outlet to reach

their target audience quickly and cost-effectively. Shops of all sizes want to reach out to their prospective customers by promoting and advertising their businesses using Google AdWords, Yelp, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and StumbleUpon, among others. Because the number of people using the Internet increases every day, shops utilizing online advertising are tapping into an emerging medium, as opposed to TV, radio and direct mail, which are losing users daily. By taking advantage of online advertising, small businesses such as body shops have the opportunity to describe their services in a detailed manner that educates the customer and hopefully makes their decision easier. By using technology that is easy to acquire without having to be a computer guru, online advertising is financially sensible for many shops. Online ads can be monitored easily from your computer, personal device or cell phone, which helps you analyze how your advertisement is performing quickly. Shops can interact with users easily on the Internet through websites, blogs and social

media to build confidence and trust. One of the best things about online advertising is the fact that you can pay as you go conveniently and easily while managing your budget with just the click of a mouse. You also can see rather quickly whether or not it is working for you. Angel Iraola, owner of Net Business Consulting & Solutions in Santa Rosa, CA, has seen online advertising campaigns that have garnered excellent results for many of his clients. “Online advertising helps drive potential customers to your website, which is always the goal,” he said. “It is an ideal medium for body shops that want to reach their target audience quickly without spending an arm and a leg. We sit down with each client and target their specific area because we’ve learned over the years that people will only travel 3– 4 miles to get any product or service, including collision repair.”

though you tried everything you could to placate them. It’s not the end of the world, so don’t fret quite yet. First off, if the review violates guidelines, you can report it and have it removed like a wart. If it’s a case of a disgruntled customer and you’re aware of the situation, you should respond promptly. Many shops let a bad review sit there for weeks or months in some cases, and that’s never a good idea. You should always privately email each reviewer, whether good or bad. Unfortunately, as part of a built-in spam prevention tool, you are allowed to send only one email to each reviewer until that reviewer responds. Reviewers can also block a shop from emailing them, so be prepared for that if it transpires. Sometimes it’s better to hire an objective third-party to ask an angry

Manage Your Reviews It happens to the best shops—you get another one-star snarky review from a customer you couldn’t please, even

customer to take down their bad review or add a few stars after rectifying the situation. Beware—never sign on using a fake name to post a review or comment on your own Yelp page. You could risk your shop’s reputation by posting 5-star reviews about you and your crew or by replying angrily to negative ones on your page. One day, a shop owner I interviewed saw a bad review and was ready to blast the customer online before I told him to relax and take a deep breath. The next day, he contacted the disgruntled individual and was able to turn it into a positive experience by simply showing him that he cared. Even an unhappy customer is reasonable when approached in a compassionate and honest way, so always reach out to everyone who offers you a review, whether good or bad.

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Cars Talking to Cars Happening in Tampa, FL, as Connected Vehicle Program Rolls Out

GM To Cut Work Force, Halt Production at Multiple Plants

by Nicole Grigg, ABC Action News

by Andrea Hinds, Williamson Source

The idea of cars talking to cars sounds futuristic, but it’s happening in Tampa, FL. The city is one of three places selected to take part in a pilot program for connected vehicles. The Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority (THEA) is demonstrating cars that can “talk” to each other, known as “connected” vehicle technology. “Connected” vehicles are not the same thing as “autonomous” vehicles, or self-driving cars. Instead, these are vehicles that communicate wirelessly via the Internet with other similarly equipped vehicles, as well as with downtown traffic and pedestrian signals. The goal is to enhance safety, improve traffic flow and even reduce greenhouse gas use. On Nov. 29, ABC Action News went along with THEA for a demonstration of how this concept works with different public transportation forms such as HART and the Streetcar system. The pilot program will gather

data for the next year to see how cars have been responding to one another and to pedestrians. Leaders demonstrated how the technology devices installed inside HART buses would alert drivers if they were to come near a connected vehicle. Both vehicles must have the technology in order to communicate and alert the drivers. “[In] 2021–22, you’re starting to see a lot of the manufacturers putting these in your car,” said Bob Frey with THEA. THEA also announced that they are testing a pedestrian area to see how the connected vehicles can connect to pedestrians through their phones. The transportation leaders have installed the necessary connected vehicle technology at a crosswalk on Twiggs Street in front of the Hillsborough County Courthouse. Tampa will be part of leading the way in continuing to develop the smart technology in vehicles. We thank WFTS- ABC Action News for reprint permission.

CIECA Welcomes Podium as New Corporate Member Podium recently joined CIECA as a Corporate Member. The privately held technology company, headquartered in Lehi, UT, provides a communication platform that enables collision centers to connect with customers and

help grow their businesses. Serving more than 26,000 small businesses in the USA, Canada and Australia, Podium is backed by Google Ventures and has been recognized by Inc. magazine, Forbes and others as one of the fastest-growing software companies worldwide. Jim Bauman, Podium’s product partnership manager, said the company helps shop owners build a shop’s online reputation on Google,



Facebook and other consumer consideration sites. “CIECA sets the standard in the collision industry for customer communication, and we are proud to partner with them,” said Bauman. “The educational content available through CIECA will help Podium better serve collision shop owners by understanding customer communication needs in the industry.” Bauman said Podium is looking forward to getting involved with CIECA. “We believe we can help CIECA modernize and improve industry communication standards to better meet the need of customers,” he said. “We’re committed to standards and want to contribute to the ongoing improvement of CSI Survey standards to better reflect the needs of shop owners and consumers.” For more information, visit www.podium.com.



JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

As part of a restructuring, General Motors will stop production at five plants and cut its salaried work force by 15 percent (an estimated 14,000 workers, reported AP). Assembly plants in Ontario, Canada; Detroit, MI; and Warren, OH, and propulsion plants in White Marsh, MD, and Warren, MI, will stop operations. GM will cease the operations of two additional plants outside North America by the end of 2019. The locations of these plants have not been disclosed yet. “The actions we are taking today continue our transformation to be highly agile, resilient and profitable, while giving us the flexibility to invest in the future,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra. “We recognize the need to stay in front of changing market conditions and customer preferences to position our company for long-term success.”

GM now intends to prioritize future vehicle investments in its next-generation battery-electric architectures. As the current vehicle portfolio is optimized, it is expected that more than 75 percent of GM”s global sales volume will come from five vehicle architectures by early in the next decade. The company plans to stop building several models now assembled at those plants, including the Chevrolet Cruze, the Cadillac CT6 and the Buick LaCrosse, reported Reuters. In the midst of announcing a cut of roughly 14,000 jobs, GM confirmed it will add a third vehicle—a Cadillac crossover—to its production line-up at its Spring Hill plant in 2019, reported CBS. We thank Williamson Source for reprint permission.


autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


Continued from Cover


and engagement increase in 2019. There are just a few carrying the flag for many here in North Carolina. Our purposes and initiatives are solid, but we will need a greater presence (through numbers) to achieve our well-intentioned goals.” Jess Crump, vice president of Women in Automotive and Collision (WAC), shared, “I hope to see 2019 bring more new members, familiar faces, students and young technicians, and of course, more events where we can reach people. I also hope we can discuss the possibility of setting up a scholarship program in our future.” For Bob Pulverenti, executive director of the Independent Garage Owners of North Carolina (IGONC), the goal for 2019 is to “find a way to increase attendance at local chapter meetings. The more people we can get to come out and network with each another and vendors, the better it is for the industry.” AASP/MA’s New Year’s resolu-

tion is “increasing membership with a focus on educating the consumers in Massachusetts as to their rights in the repair process, which is critical to our continued movement towards success,” according to Executive Director Lucky Papageorg. Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) Executive Director Aaron Schulenburg hopes to bring more value to member businesses in 2019.

has the potential to impact people’s lives in very meaningful ways. We are building solutions to let our members leverage the collective buying power of the association membership to offer more comprehensive benefits while lowering costs. The programs will provide access to more competitively priced, quality healthcare plans from major carriers that allow small businesses to offer best-in-class benefits (including medical, dental,

The association’s goal, he shared, is “to help our member businesses do more to support the health and quality of life of their employees. We believe small businesses deserve better—better benefits, better healthcare and certainly better costs. 2019 is going to welcome the launch of the SCRS Benefits Marketplace, a group health benefits program exclusively for SCRS members. We are really excited about this program because it

vision, voluntary life, short-term and long-term disability, HSAs and much more). It is something that has resonated exceptionally well with the industry in our pre-rollout surveys. “Aside from healthcare, we also intend to launch industry-first retirement solutions for employers looking for ways to offer their employees retirement benefits while reducing the administrative burden and mitigating the fiduciary risk and respon-

“There is strength in numbers, and we all need to come together and educate each other to better our industry,” — Jerry McNee

sibilities.” ASA-CO hopes to re-engage members to better focus on legislative initiatives. “We will focus on re-establishing the importance of what ASA does for the automotive community as a whole with an eye on re-engaging our membership to help it grow. It is true that ASA-CO became complacent over the years and seemed to have lost touch with its base, and we aim to change that for the betterment of our industry,” shared Brad Pellman, chair of ASA-CO. “ASA is our voice in Washington that ensures that we may continue to have all the service and repair data available on an ongoing basis. This protects us and our industry nationwide with the right to repair.” ASA Northwest has similar designs. “One of ASA Northwest’s New Year’s resolutions is to work on legislation for the Don’t Drip and Drive program through the state of Washington and the Department of Ecology. We have been working on the Don’t Drip and Drive program since 2011 in the Puget Sound region. With

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the upcoming 2019 year, ASA Northwest is looking forward to helping expand the program statewide,” noted Jeff Lovell, president and executive director of ASA Northwest. Lovell also hopes to expand the association’s educational offerings in 2019. “ATE (Automotive Training Expo) was designed by ASA Northwest to educate and train the automotive industry,” he said. “This program has provided our educators (near and far) with exceptional training that they are unable to get elsewhere. Due to the high demand for automotive training, ASA Northwest will be adding an additional training opportunity in Spokane called ATE – EAST, which will be held Oct. 4–5, 2019.” ASA Northwest Chairman of the Board Butch Jobst added his desire to “fully implement an educational coalition to bring our industry to both our region’s educators and the public in general. The complexity of our industry is mostly unknown by our education system and much of the general population.” Ricki Garrett, executive direc-

tor of the Mississippi Collision Repair Association (MSCRA), said, “Our goals for the new year include having more training opportunities for our members and making the SARC Conference the best collision repair conference ever.” ASA-MI President Ray Fisher sees 2019 as a year when consumer education can and should expand to new heights. He said the association plans on “emphasizing the importance of awareness, communication and education to our internal and external customers. As vehicles with various levels of automation and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) increase in our vehicle population, it is our duty as professionals to inform the consumer and public the procedures necessary to fix these vehicles properly so that their systems once again work properly. Awareness, communication and education are paramount in 2019, and going forward, it must be a part of every estimator, manager and owner’s job description! “Reimbursement for proper repairs should not be denied, feared or ignored, but rather welcomed. As an

industry of professionals, we cannot overlook the procedures necessary to fix the vehicle to pre-loss condition—there are millions of American families counting on us to do our job as an expert! Predictions are that severity will increase, but initial studies of these systems also show that double digit decreases in bodily injury and accident frequency are occurring. We must understand that that is where the savings will take place to offset, not omitting a procedure, which could have catastrophic results.” Burl Richards, president of the Auto Body Association of Texas (ABAT), provided an inspirational thought for industry unity: “Share, share, share information with everyone in the collision industry, as your successes will help others know that they are not ‘the only ones asking.’” AASP/NJ President Jerry McNee agreed. “There is strength in numbers, and we all need to come together and educate each other to better our industry,” he said. With these association leaders leading the charge for 2019, the industry is in for another year of progress and inspiration. Happy New Year!

Polyvance’s New Tool Aids in Removing Dents Body shops can turn dented bumpers into profits with Polyvance’s new 6148 Bumper Rollers kit. Most body shops throw dented bumpers away, unaware that they can be repaired. The 6148 Bumper Rollers kit makes it easier for technicians to push dents out and restore the sharp body lines common in today’s complex plastic bumper covers.

To remove the dent, the technician would first heat the bumper with a heat gun to soften the plastic. Once the entire area is too hot to touch, the dent is pushed out with the Bumper Rollers. The different rollers allow the technician to reestablish body lines of various shapes and to shrink the distortions around the edges of the original dent where the plastic was stretched.


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Continued from Cover

Caliber Collision

scanning and calibration services and the broadest network of OEMcertified locations in the U.S. Grimshaw continued, “We plan to maintain all existing centers from both companies as we develop and execute a plan to work smarter, generate growth, offer expanded services, drive operational excellence and reward talent across the organization. Recognizing the critical importance of top talent to our success, we will be retaining all teammates in the field at both Caliber and ABRA centers, and we look forward to creating a culture that supports our teammates as they expand their careers across a larger organization, accelerated by industry-leading development programs.” “Our industry becomes more complex every year,” said ABRA CEO Ann Fandozzi. “The combined company will invest in the equipment, training and technologies that will allow our teammates to build their careers while continuing to meet

and exceed our customers’ needs for years to come.” Both companies remain completely committed to serving valued insurance clients through the companies’ partnership programs while maintaining and expanding strategic relationships with a single point of contact.The company is also committed to continuing to serve ABRA’s 59 franchisees with an even greater level of attention. The transaction is expected to close in early 2019. Grimshaw will lead the combined company. During the transition, customers and insurance clients should expect to see no disruption to the service and repairs they receive at both companies. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. As part of this transaction, private equity firm Hellman & Freidman LLC—ABRA’s majority shareholder since 2014—will become the majority shareholder of the combined company. Both OMERS and Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. (LGP) will remain significant minority shareholders in the combined company. OMERS currently owns a majority stake in Caliber and LGP owns a minority stake.

David Rogers Is the 2018 BodyShop Business/ASE Master Collision Repair & Refinish Technician David Rogers, an ASE-certified collision repair technician from New York Mills, MN, was recently honored with a national achievement award as the BodyShop Business/ASE Master Collision Repair & Refinish Technician of the Year.

At the ASE annual awards event are Tim Zilke (from left), David Rogers, Jason Stahl and Ted Hayes. Submitted photo

Fifty-two automotive professionals were recognized on Nov. 14 at the Fall 2018 Board of Governors meeting of the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) held at Pier Sixty-Six Hotel and Marina in Fort Lauderdale, FL. The ASE annual awards spotlight top scorers on the ASE Certification tests from among the ranks of the approximately quarter-million ASE-certified professionals 26

nationwide. “Dave, who is the body shop manager at Nyhus Chevrolet-Buick in Staples, is one of the outstanding ASE-certified professionals recognized annually by different segments of the automotive service and repair industry,” said Timothy Zilke, ASE president & CEO. “Each of these elite technicians is presented with an industry-specific award recognizing their achievement.” “ASE has honored extraordinary industry professionals from across the nation for more than 40 years. This is made possible by the support of our many award sponsors, whose ranks include some of the best-known names in the industry. We are proud to partner with BodyShop Business to recognize Dave’s commitment to excellence in providing the very best in vehicle repair services to his extended community. This dedication is reflected in the talented professionals we recognize each year, and Dave represents the best of the best.” We thank Pioneer Journal for reprint permission.

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Davenport, IA, Snow Storm Keeps Body Shops Busy With Damaged Cars

get increased traffic. When you get increased traffic, you get more accidents,” Arnold said. “[You get] people bumping into each other on the low end of things; [on] the higher end of things, you’re seeing people [who went] at a higher rate of speed, [tried] to stop and [slammed] into each other. However, although crews were working around the clock to clear paths for drivers, it still put some, such as Tony Carter, in dangerous situations. “The damage is to the front end of the car, which is all plastic. That’s why there is a lot of damage, but it did absorb the impact really well,” Carter said. This left Carter with advice for other people who plan to hit the roads. “Please be careful,” he said. “With what we had with the rain last night, then it turning into snow, it is all freezing as we speak. The temperature’s dropping. I hit black ice, had plenty of time and should’ve stopped a half a mile before, so be careful.” We thank OurQuadCities.com for reprint permission.

by Briana Collier, OurQuadCities.com

Davenport, IA-area body shops were hard at work Nov. 26 after the first massive winter storm swept through the Quad Cities.

Credit: OurQuadCities.com

“With the winter weather come a lot of people slipping and sliding around, so we see a lot of suspension damage.” The slick roads left auto body shops with many cars to repair from people getting into accidents. “We’re seeing a lot of those types of accidents where people are hitting each other because they’re trying to go too fast trying to get to places.” This is something Arnold’s Body Shop Vice President Joe Arnold said they were pretty prepared for. “Along with the holidays, you

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CARSTAR Announces Aggressive Growth Plans for 2019 CARSTAR was the first multi-shop operator to cross the 600-facility milestone when it opened in Sudbury, ON, in July 2018. It quickly then set its sights on accelerating this growth for the United States and Canada through strategic, targeted expansion.

“As the collision repair industry evolves, the national organizations with strong franchise partners who have the scale and expertise to adapt to advanced repair standards, changing technology and insurance carrier needs will be the ones with the best opportunities for success,” said Michael Macaluso, president of CARSTAR. “We are focused on growing strategically in target markets with excellent franchise partners and providing these franchise partners the operations and marketing support to help them perform and grow with the most trusted

brand in the industry.” In 2018, CARSTAR added more than 90 stores to its North American network. CARSTAR saw dramatic growth in San Francisco, Southern California, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia in the U.S. and across Canada. It expects to end the year with more than 650 locations. “CARSTAR continues be the best solution for an independent collision repair shop owner who wants to compete in their local market with insurance relationships, preferred vendor pricing and operational support while retaining their independence,” added Macaluso. For 2019, CARSTAR forecasts adding 120 locations to its network, with a majority of this growth occurring in key U.S. markets. CARSTAR has an analytical approach to growth based on the Driven Brands proprietary model, which allows them to identify targeted opportunities based on real estate, economic and demographic trends.

WIN Reveals Theme of Annual Educational Conference & Awards Celebration

Women’s Industry Network (WIN®) is excited to announce that “Navigating Tomorrow Together” has been selected as the theme for the

2019 WIN Educational Conference being held May 6–8, 2019 in Fort Lauderdale, FL. “We are seeing rapid and frequent changes daily in the collision repair industry that have an impact on how we work,” stated Yolanda Sandor, who is once again serving as co-chair for the Educational Conference Committee. “‘Navigating Tomorrow Together’ speaks to the importance of collaboration and en28

couragement among those in our industry to take on these new challenges.” The Westin Beach Resort has been selected as the host property for the event. In addition to Florida sunshine, the property offers over 36,000 square feet of meeting space suited to accommodate WIN’s growing conference attendee numbers. The 2019 program specifics will be published as they become available. Attendees can anticipate a packed agenda including professional development programming, the Most Influential Women and scholarship awards and the Annual Scholarship Walk fundraiser. Conference registration will open in early 2019. For more information about the conference, MIW nominations and scholarship applications, please visit: womensindustrynetwork.com.


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JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

IGONC Learns How To Drive Growth Through Digital Marketing by Chasidy Rae Sisk

On Nov. 6, the Triangle Chapter of the Independent Garage Owners of North Carolina (IGONC) gathered for BBQ food and an educational presentation at Autoshop Solutions in Apex, NC. Autoshop Solutions Sales Director Tony Mercury presented “Driving Growth Through Digital Marketing.” According to IGONC Executive Director Bob Pulverenti, “Our members always look forward to getting a chance to learn more about digital marketing. Many have found

Tony Mercury presented “Driving Growth Through Digital Marketing” during IGONC’s November Triangle Chapter Meeting

it really useful for gaining new customers, plus we are always glad to get the opportunity to tour one of our vendor member’s offices and learn

more about their day-to-day efforts to help garage owners be as successful as possible.”

IGONC Executive Director Bob Pulverenti poses with Margaret Edmunds Palango, chief business development officer at Autoshop Solutions

The monthly meeting was held as part of IGONC’s monthly commitment to promoting the community and providing members with educational seminars. Additionally, the meeting served as a networking event. “A big part of being in an association is the community,” Pulverenti pointed out. “Autoshop Solutions provided a BBQ dinner for all the attendees, and a nice crowd was in attendance. The meeting was hosted at the offices of Autoshop Solutions, and they have always been a great supporter of both the IGONC and ASTE.” For more information on IGONC, visit igonc.com.

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Media and Publicity for Shops with Ed Attanasio

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at era39@aol.com.

Phoenix Solutions Group Unveils Digital Presence Management Solution With more and more consumers searching for body shops’ information online, it has become increasingly important for shops to clean up their digital presence. That’s one of the reasons why Phoenix Solutions Group (PSG) recently announced its new Digital Presence Management product. One purpose of its new product is to monitor and help shops revise incorrect listings about their site across all the listing sources that Google values the most. PSG President Nick Schoolcraft developed a system that cleans up online listings and generates first-party reviews that drive digital and voice search optimization—-the method that is now used for performing over 50 percent of search queries, according to Comscore. Delivered on a single platform, PSG’s system provides a shop with

the first 360-degree view of its presence in both traditional and online interactions. The numbers tell the story: 86 percent of all businesses have either missing or inconsistent company name information across all listing sources; 72 percent have either missing or incorrect information; and 71 percent have missing or incorrect phone numbers. In a recent product demonstration of PSG’s new Digital Presence Management product, Schoolcraft discussed how the company’s new collision customer research drove them to develop this product. “What we have found is that on average, the majority of a body shop’s organic search traffic comes from customers searching some form of the body shop’s name,” he said. “So if that basic information is not accurate and customers can’t

find you easily, they may end up going elsewhere. If your phone number or address is wrong, they could abandon the search and contact the next shop on their list, for example.” Schoolcraft also discussed how these types of searches, known as branded keyword searches, are not driven by any type of search engine optimization (SEO) programs. “Think about it: If people are typing in the shop’s name online, then you’d have to assume that they are already aware of the shop,” he said. “They’re not really searching for you, but simply finding you online, so you’ve already done the heavy lifting, and SEO is really not playing a role. Your name is in the front of their minds, so it’s important not to drop the ball at that point, and wrong information can do exactly that.”

Schoolcraft also discussed how these statistics align with body shop customers’ traditional buying behavior. “Shopping for a body shop is not like shopping for a restaurant,” he said. “Restaurants have a sense of desire and interest, but unfortunately, shopping for a body shop is the exact opposite. In most cases, collision customers are already in the late stages of the buying cycle when they go online. They’ve consulted with people they trust about where to go and typically use the Internet to validate the relevant facts about the shop—-its address, phone number, hours, etc.—-and perhaps check out a couple of reviews, but mostly they go directly to the shop’s website.” These industry-specific insights, along with his previous digSee Phoenix Solutions Group, Page 60



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Southeast Associations with Chasidy Rae Sisk

Chasidy Rae Sisk is a freelance technical writer from Wilmington, Delaware, who writes on a variety of fields and subjects, and grew up in a family of NASCAR fans. She can be contacted at crsisk@chasidyraesisk.com.

NCACAR Meets With NCDOI to Discuss Alternative Parts On Nov. 7, several North Carolina Association of Collision and Autobody Repair (NCACAR) board members conducted an off-site presentation with representatives of the North Carolina Department of Insurance (DOI) task force as part of a collaboration between the two groups to enhance knowledge of several main issues impacting the state’s motoring public.

According to NCACAR President Brian Davies, “These issues included differences in part types and how these parts can affect safety, but we are also working to gain a better understanding of telematics as it relates to new vehicle technology and customer communication.”

operational hurdles faced by the consumer and the shops when choosing alternative part types,” Davies shared. “The vehicle I chose for this presentation was a 2018 Honda Civic because of its commonality and readily available parts e.g. new and used (LKQ), both certified and non-certified. “The parts were organized and marked green for OEM and red for aftermarket throughout the paint department on tables, stands and the floor. All the new parts were marked for visual differences, weight and harness testing (when available). The used quarter panel, door and suspension were purchased to illustrate safety issues when OEM repair procedures are not followed, such as not duplicating factory-type welds, unknown origins and not tracing recall information, along with the obvious visual poor condition of the part itself.” NCACAR is especially thankful to Burl Richards of the Auto Body Association of Texas (ABAT) for kindly mailing his hardness tester for use during the presentation. Chris Smith, production manager for Davies’ shop, aided in performing the tests and marking and organizing the parts.

Chris Smith used the hardness tester during NCACAR’s presentation to the NCDOI

Additional NCACAR members who attended the presentation included NCACAR Secretary Clint Rogers and OEM Certifications Advisor Michael Bradshaw, along with Robbie Walker and Dennis Reittinger. Rogers hosted the meeting at Triangle Collision, outside Raleigh, NC. The two-hour presentation was divided into four sections: parts review, parts comparisons, Honda video, and a telematics discussion. “Our main goal was to demonstrate for the representatives of the DOI the safety issues by enabling them to see, feel and compare part differences first-hand, which in turn helped in gaining knowledge of the 30

front bumper, front reinforcement (AL), rear reinforcement steel, rear bumper cover, left front headlamp, upper front bumper stiffener, hood, radiator support, fender, radiator,

ite), a NSF fender, a non-certified fender, radiator and condenser, as well as a used door, a used quarter panel and a used (LKQ) knee assembly.

condenser, left front door, left quarter panel, left control arm, left strut, left knuckle, left hub and bearing. Alternative parts tested, compared or used included the following aftermarket parts: bumper, front reinforcement, reinforcement steel, headlamp, front stiffener, hood, radiator support (both steel and compos-

The table below provides a sample of the tests performed and lists the weight and hardness as measured with three consecutive impacts to the same spot per the hardness tester procedure: GYSTEEL model ST 1200. Davies explained, “It’s obvious See NCACAR Meets, Page 38

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The new OEM parts that were tested, compared or used during NCACAR’s presentation included a

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Tips for Busy Body Shops with Stacey Phillips

Stacey Phillips is a freelance writer and editor for the automotive industry. She has 20 years of experience writing for a variety of publications, and is co-author of “The Secrets of America’s Greatest Body Shops.” She can be reached at sphillips.autobodynews@gmail.com.

How to Prepare and Negotiate Better Deals With Industry Partners With the collision repair industry in- purchase they had made. When it creasingly becoming more competi- comes to personal expenses, such as tive and margins getting thinner, it’s buying a house or a car, he said it’s more important than ever to negoti- typical to conduct research and make ate better deals with industry part- price comparisons. However, many ners, according to Eric Newell. times shops are unprepared when neNewell, the market area man- gotiating large business purchases, ager for asTech, recently shared tips such as a frame machine or spray on how to prepare for negotiations booth. with industry partners during the SoNewell said that it is an acquired ciety of Collision Repair Specialists skill and sets the tone for the entire Repairer Driven Education Series process. “I can guarantee that your held at the SEMA Show in counterpart or negotiating Las Vegas, NV. party is also preparing,” he “Preparation is invalusaid. able,” said Newell. “If you Newell shared a 2014 haven’t done the work bequote from Yannick Feder, fore you get to the table, it’s an experience purchasing exgoing to prove very difficult ecutive: “More than 80 perto be successful and have an Eric Newell, market cent of the negotiations are area manager outcome that leads to more done without an underlying for asTech profitability for both parties method and often end in involved.” sub-optimal results or worse, a staleNewell offered advice based on mate.” his experience over the years work“That means that 80 percent of ing as the chief operating officer the time, people show up at the table (COO) for a six-shop MSO in North- with no clue as to how they are going west Indiana prior to joining asTech. to reach their target,” explained He was also involved in the firefight- Newell. “That’s when you start neers’ union in Indiana for nearly a gotiating out of emotion. When you decade as well as the union’s negoti- negotiate out of emotion, you’ve lost ating team. before you even walk in the door.”

The Seven Sins of Negotiating

“Be prepared to walk away. Many people feel that if you walk away from a negotiation, you’ve lost, and that’s typically not the case. You’re making an intelligent business decision. If you walk into a negotiation, you shouldn’t come out worse off than you were before.”

the way that we can communicate what we’re looking for, I think we would yield better results.”

As business owners, some type of negotiation is taking place every day, whether it’s with vendors, customers, insurance companies, technicians/employees, the landlord or the bank. There needs to be value added on both sides of the table, according to Newell, otherwise it will never work. “Negotiations can be difficult,” said Newell. “If we could improve

the negotiating process. The “lead” is the primary negotiator and main contact between both parties. Then there is the “support” team that can assist with information-gathering and be part of a committee and/or board to ensure everyone is aligned. “Do not have too many cooks in the kitchen or it can convolute the process; you’ll run into problems and the message often gets diluted,”

Taking Steps to Prepare Newell said the first step is to establish a team composed of everyone in the organization who is involved in

“Look at the long-term picture; look past next month’s bills.” — Eric Newell

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1. Pride - Be prepared to compromise.

2. Glutton - Don’t bite off more than you can chew. 3. Anger - Handle objections calmly rather than getting into arguments. 4. Covetousness - Prioritize needs and wants. 5. Envy - Know your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses. 6. Sloth - Do your homework. 7. Lust - Don’t look desperate to settle. “Through that experience, I was able to equate a lot of things that the unions did—because they are very good and strategic at negotiating— and convert it to our industry,” he said. During his presentation, Newell asked collision repairers and insurers if they recalled the last significant 34

Newell advised attendees to focus their time and energy on preparing so that both parties are more apt to come to an agreement. At the same time, he cautioned against finalizing a negotiation without careful consideration of the cost. “Maybe the agreement isn’t going to work, and that’s ok,” he said.

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advised Newell. Next, you’ll want to define your target and ensure it is precise, laserfocused and strategic. “If your part

discount is 1 percent and you want to go to 1.25, that’s your target,” explained Newell. Targets need to be achievable and realistic to achieve the negotiation. “Remove all emotion from your target,” advised Newell. “Targets need to be based within the business and based on numbers or an end result.” After defining the target, Newell said it’s time to gather the necessary information. “The reason we gather information is so that we can under-

stand both sides of the process, maybe make it a little smoother and communicate that based on factual knowledge,” said Newell. “Informa-

tion is the foundation of creating value and without it, it is almost impossible to establish any factual negotiating points.” He recommended asking the following seven questions: 1) What kind of information do we want to know? There are three types of information that Newell said are essential to find out: financial, services and opera-


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learn who they currently service and what type of service(s) they provide. Last, determine how long they have been operating and their past record. 2) Where can we get this information? A variety of sources can be helpful when gathering information, including business records, the Internet, social media platforms, employees and vendors.

3) Is there anything we can learn from previous negotiations? Many times, a business will negotiate with the same person again and again. Newell recommended reflecting on what was negotiated, the result of the negotiation and if anything could have been done differently. 4) How much business, if any, are we doing with them? Part of the information-gathering process is being realistic about how much business has been conducted and for how long with the other party and if it is feasible to negotiate any added-value services. 5) How well is the company doing? Newell recommended looking at the business’s market share, growth and reputation to learn as much as possible and help formulate a negotiation strategy.

6) What don’t you want them to know about you? IF there are issues within the business that create some exposure, Newell said to be aware of them and ensure


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tional. First, he said to find out how well the opposition is doing financially to determine if they can afford to give you a better deal. Next,

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you have the answers to address them.

7) Who is the decision-maker? Determining and working with the decision-maker is a critical component of the process. “You need to determine if they are even capable of coming to a deal—very rarely do I negotiate with someone who can’t come to a deal,” said Newell. He also stressed the importance of negotiating at the table, face-to-face rather than by phone, email, text, social media or mail. After gathering information and doing research, Newell said to decide on what he referred to as the “circuit breaker” and the BATNA (Best Alternative to Negotiated Agreement). The circuit breaker is the number that the decision-maker is comfortable walking away from, and the BATNA is the middle ground or ZOPA (zone of possible agreement) that the decision-maker is willing to accept. “Don’t agree just to agree,” advised Newell. “Look at the long-term picture; look past next month’s bills.” What Type of Negotiation is Best Newell talked about two types of neContinued from Page 30


from the measurements that both the hardness and weight of these parts are different, specifically the progression of the hardness of the radi-

NCACAR compared a multitude of brand-new OEM parts to their alternative counterparts to demonstrate to the DOI that they do not have equal performance

ator support. The North Carolina Statute states, ‘Parts are required to have equal performance,’ and the differences were shown and explained to the DOI representatives in order to 38

gotiations: positional and principled. Positional negotiations involve arguing based on an extreme position regarding wants, needs and limitations. The positions are almost always on the opposite side of the spectrum; therefore, it becomes necessary to make concessions to reach an agreement, according to Newell. These negotiations tend to last longer and can often end in a stalemate. A principled negotiation, also known as an integrative negotiation, is where both parties work together to achieve a value-created agreement. In theory, this leaves them satisfied with the outcome and status of the relationship. Rather than having different positions, Newell explained that the parties think in terms of their similar interests. He stressed the importance of building a relationship during the negotiation process and how valuable that can be. “This is where the magic happens,” he said. He shared a statistic from the Carnegie Institute of Technology in regard to the benefits of having excellent negotiation skills. “Eighty-five percent of your financial success is due to your perdemonstrate how the parts may not meet the ‘like kind and quality’ requirement of the North Carolina law. We also shared a video produced by Honda that demonstrated when parts that have such glaring physical differences from original parts are used, the airbag timing is negatively affected to the detriment of the occupants.” As the meeting drew to a close, Rogers shared his insights on the privacy concerns with telematics as they relate to steering, personal injury and automatic accident notifications, along with driving habits. Additionally, NCACAR sponsored and shared a several-hundred-page color binder with a multitude of industry information to serve as a resource to all the DOI representatives. Davies concluded, “My hope is for this type of collaboration to continue with all the Departments of Insurance throughout the United States, so that we, as an industry along with our government, can continue to grow, advance and ensure consumer safety.”

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

sonality and ability to communicate, negotiate and lead. Shockingly, only 15 percent is due to technical knowledge,” he said. Newell also discussed different negotiation styles, which include competition, accommodation, collaboration, avoidance and compromise. A competition style of negotiation is more than likely to be adversarial. Negotiations are seen as a competition with a winner and a loser. Newell said it can be used in fast-paced circumstances. “When two of these same styles come together, there is a greater risk for a stalemate,” observed Newell. The accommodation approach is a more submissive style in which a party is ready and willing to offer information and make concessions. The individual most likely places the relationship as a top priority. “This is a successful approach when mending or maintaining relationships,” said Newell. “If a company is in the midst of crisis, it’s a great strategy to avoid litigation and appease the other party.” Otherwise, he recommends using this strategy sparingly.

Where an accommodating style is submissive, avoidance is passive aggressive. “It skirts the issue rather than attacking it head-on,” explained Newell. Many view it as less transparent and honest because communication lines can be weak. Newell said it’s a great tactic to use in a highly emotional negotiation when focusing solely on the facts and to avoid emotional issues. With collaboration, both parties brainstorm and create mutual value. While this is often time-consuming and requires the most skills, Newell said both parties’ needs are typically met, and strong relationships can be the end result. Compromise, also called “positional negotiating,” involves splitting the difference, which usually results in a decision that is halfway between both parties’ opening positions. Newell recommended using this approach when pushed for time and dealing with someone you trust. “Both parties win and lose,” he said. “Meeting halfway reduces strain on the relationship but usually leaves something on the table.”


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In Reverse with Gary Ledoux

Gary Ledoux is an industry veteran with 48 years’ experience in the automotive and OEM collision parts industry. His column appears exclusively in Autobody News. He can be reached at YesterWreck@yahoo.com

The 1960s – Associations, Leaders and Poor Management Anyone who lived through the 1960s knows what a turbulent time it was politically, socially and culturally. There were some profound changes in the collision repair trade as well. Born in the mid-1940s, the industry was starting to “come of age.” Unlike today in the 21st century, when industry metrics are plentiful and easy to find, it was difficult to find accurate numbers on anything in the 1960s. The number of shops had been growing almost unabated since 1946. By 1969, there were an estimated 75,000 body shops in the country, but nobody had a figure on their size in terms of either square footage or number of employees. Earnest Rowe, then marketing service manager for DuPont Automotive Refinish Division, surmised that despite the great number of shops, most were very small operations, and most overworked. The universe of shops consisted of independents and a few dealer-owned shops, and none of them had to go begging for work. Back then, the average hourly labor rate for collision repair was $4.50 to $5.50 per hour. In a trade magazine article, a shop owner noted labor rates had only gone from $4 to $5 per hour in 1951 to $4.50 to $5.50 per hour in 1963. Yet, insurance company adjuster salaries had gone from $225 per month to $450 per month. He questioned why labor rates had been frozen for so long. Another unidentified shop owner was quoted as saying, “…problems have existed in this business for a long time. We have been talking about them, but what the heck are we doing to correct them!” Part of the change that the collision industry experienced in the ‘60s was the almost simultaneous emergence of three key elements. The first was the evolution and proliferation of auto body associations. Smart shop owners saw the industry becoming more complicated and knew that they had to band together. The second was emerging leaders. With any organization, espe-


cially those operated by volunteers, leaders eventually emerge. And thus, certain people within the industry began to stand out and assume leadership roles, bringing elements of the industry together. And last, but certainly not least, was the advent of the nationally distributed collision industry trade magazine so the leaders could have a voice and shops would know what was going on. Soon, leaders and those willing to support them would have an answer for the shop owner who asked, “…what the heck are we doing to correct the industry’s issues?” One of the earliest industry leaders to begin suggesting industry solutions was Art Fox, president of the Independent Garage Owners Association (IGOA). He began calling for more oversight of auto body shops, suggesting that all shops be licensed on a nationwide basis to ensure competent repairs. He noted that barbers in his home state of Iowa were subject to more legal oversight than the technicians who worked on cars were. But the emergence of industry associations and leaders had a dark side. An article appearing in a 1969 trade journal provided one long-time shop owner’s vision of the collision business over the past 20 years. He noted that during the period from 1959–1964, as the collision associations began to emerge, insurance companies began to see them as a threat and refused to do business with shops that were part of an association or displayed an association emblem on their shop. Some associations were able to put the spotlight on labor rates, and the rates went up slightly in the local area. However, parts discounts to insurers got out of hand, and despite the increased labor rates, shops lost money on parts and many began to go bankrupt. It is also assumed that those same shops were not run well financially to begin with and the parts discounts were the “last straw.” It was also difficult, if not impossible, to recover costs for paint and supplies.

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Despite the bankruptcies, more shops opened up. To compete with the established shops, they not only offered parts discounts, but also kept the labor rate artificially low. Things got bad—and then got worse for many. According to the veteran shop owner writing the 1969 article, to stay in business, he borrowed $50,000 to stay afloat, not knowing how he would pay it back. From 1964—1969, trade associations became stronger and insurance companies began to accept and even work with the associations to make the industry better. But things did not get better for all shop owners. Many were poor businessmen and could not control their own businesses or finances. Technicians left for better working conditions. Owners suffered. Despite the best efforts of emerging industry leaders and organizations, another hallmark of the industry in the 1960s was an undercurrent of unrest. It seems owning a body shop during this period was politically tough. The shops fought with the OEs, insurance companies and one another. They had what seemed like a multitude of small local auto body associations that didn’t always work together. Shop owners were looking for answers. The business, as it was in the 1960s, was simply not sustainable. In the post-WWII economic boom, car sales skyrocketed—as did the number of collision and mechanical shops to serve them. This created a lot of competition between shops, which spawned a rather odd phenomenon—the super-cheap service. On the collision side, it was the $29.95 paint job. The concept undoubtedly attracted some work to the shop, but many shop owners thought that the concept was illegitimate and gave consumers a poor impression of the industry. Harry Wright, president of the IGOA, railed against those shops, both mechanical and collision. He purported that shops were promising ridiculously inexpensive jobs, only to either turn around and charge the customer two to three times as

much or do virtually nothing for the cheap, agreed-upon price. He noted that garages that continue this practice continue to “denigrate the automotive repair business and put the industry in a negative light.” The IGOA and other associations continued to fight this wherever and whenever possible. The 1960s also saw the increasing involvement of insurance companies, spawning another trend that continues today to a certain degree—the shop owner who “has had enough” and gotten out of the business. Stories like this one started to pop up all over the collision trade magazines: “After running a threeman body shop for over 25 years, Linwood King of Raleigh, North Carolina was tired of the insurance companies harassing him for parts discounts, asking him to lower his labor rate, asking him to cut corners and driving customers from his shop. Rather than fight anymore, King stopped doing body work as his main source of business and stopped dealing with insurance companies. Instead, he turned to mostly mechanical work with some small body jobs on the side—small enough that they were customer-pay and did not involve an insurance company. All work was done for cash, on a take-it-or-leave-it basis.” Most had a similar story—it was tough to get started at first. But after things evened out, the shop typically had a smaller volume of business but made more money with less stress, and the owner could sleep at night. Throughout the ‘60s, industry leaders called for shop owners to clean up their businesses and make them more pleasant and aesthetically pleasing to customers, as well as workers. Many owners stepped up and modernized their shops, bringing them out of the ‘60s and onto the edge of the 1970s.


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From the Desk of Mike Anderson with Mike Anderson

Mike Anderson is the president and owner of Collision Advice, a consulting company for the auto body/collision repair industry. For nearly 25 years, he was the owner of Wagonwork Collision Center, an OEM-certified, full-service auto body repair facility in Alexandria, VA.

A Reasonable Price for a Vehicle Scan Depends on What You’re Including I get asked quite regularly by both shops and insurers, “What is a reasonable charge for a vehicle scan?” Our “Who Pays for What?” surveys have found there’s not much consistency for what collision repair-

house charge a flat fee. Just over 40 percent charge up to one labor hour at a mechanical labor rate. But the remaining 35 percent of shops conducting scanning in-house were all over the map. There was similar variety in

Up to one hour of mechanical labor is the single most common charge among shops for conducting a vehicle scan in-house, according to a 2018 “Who Pays for What?” survey, but almost 70 percent of the industry uses a different pricing methodology

ers charge. In 2018, of about 1,000 shops responding to the survey, about 1 in 4 of those who perform scans in-

whether and how shops bill for their labor—such as hooking up the vehicle—when they use a remote scan-

ning service. So whenever I get asked, “What’s a fair and reasonable charge for scanning?” I just say it depends on what steps you’re including as part of that charge. I’ve been asking people in my classes to write down all the steps involved in scanning. Only a handful of people are able to list all the steps. Think about it:

labor time included or do you lineitem it separately?

• You have to gain access to the vehicle battery. Depending on where

• You may have to allow the vehicle to get to operating temperature. This might not often be an issue in Southern California or other warm

the battery is located in the vehicle— under the hood, under a seat, in the trunk—you may have to remove trim or other items. Is that additional

climates. But if you’ve pulled the vehicle in from outside during the dead of winter, in many parts of the country it may take some time to get that

• You need to access the battery because you have to hook up battery support in order to ensure you have the proper voltage to perform the scan.


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vehicle up to operating temperature.

• Only then can you locate the port and hook up your scan tool to perform the output or functionality test. How long that test takes, to send a signal out to all the different modules and determine if any diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) have been set,

only indicate how many key cycles have occurred since the DTCs were set. Either way, this data helps determine if the DTCs were related either to the accident or (for post-repair scans) the repair process. • Then you have to record any DTCs. There may be only a few. I re-

that process a little easier, but most do not. For each DTC, you can generally find a flow chart to help you determine which one of potentially several causes led to the DTC. You have to diagnose which is most likely and then narrow that down.

• Once all that work is done, you generally need to test drive the vehicle. More and more automakers have very specific test drive requirements. • After that, you may need to conduct another scan to ensure the DTCs have been cleared and have not reoccurred.

What shops charge for their labor when using a remote scanning service, such as asTech or AirPro Diagnostics, also varies widely according to a 2018 “Who Pays for What?” survey

can vary by make and model, how many modules the vehicle has, etc.

• Next, you have to record the “freeze-frame” or “snapshot” data. Some vehicles indicate the exact date, time and vehicle mileage when any DTCs have been set. Others may

cently saw a vehicle scan that showed 57 DTCs. There could be more than 100. • Next, you have to research what caused each of those DTCs. Some OEM scan tools integrate with the OEM repair procedures, which makes


So a vehicle scan is a lot more than just hooking up a scan tool. Knowing what is a reasonable charge requires knowing which of the above steps you’ll be including. I can’t tell you what to charge. But given that some of the steps can vary widely from vehicle to vehicle, I think the fair thing is to include the basics in your base charge for scanning—pulling the vehicle in, letting it get up to operating temperature, hooking up the scan tool and record-

ing the DTCs. I think it’s also fair to then lineitem the related procedures that vary more widely vehicle to vehicle. Certainly the diagnostic time required to trouble-shoot all the DTCs varies based on the number and complexity of those codes. I don’t see how that can be included in a basic scan charge rather than being itemized out based on how much time is required for each particular vehicle. I think the industry should move away from a simple set charge for every scan. Instead, I’d suggest defining what’s included in the base charge and then adding line items for the diagnostic work and other variables.

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AkzoNobel Performance Group Highlights Importance of Working on Business, Not in Business by Stacey Phillips

Performance benchmarking, sharing best practices and customized training were all part of a recent AkzoNobel performance group meeting in San Diego, CA. Held in September, the AkzoNobel Acoat Selected North American Performance Group (NAPG) provided an opportunity for body shop owners and managers to work on their businesses instead of in their businesses. The ultimate goal during the three-day event was to enhance the performance of both the individuals and companies through peer-topeer networking.

(l to r) Marty Heiden, Greg Griffith and Oscar Arellano

“Imagine being with a group of 100 shop owners for the sole purpose of exchanging business growth ideas. That is exactly what happens at Acoat Selected Performance Group meetings,” said Rick Fifer, North American services manager. “Acoat Selected Performance Group members meet to share successes, find solutions to problems and make new relationships with like-minded shop owners from across North America. The wealth of knowledge and experience present at these meetings is nothing short of awe-inspiring.” There are two main components to the meetings for the body shops, distributors and AkzoNobel employees who attend. The first involves group activities, which consist of keynote speakers, idea contests, panel discussions, classes and other activities. Fifer said that many of those who attend mention how much they value the conversations that take place. “With so many people in attendance, you are sure to find someone who has solved the problems you face or has a great business improvement 44

idea you can implement,” he said. Sub-group sessions are the other focus of the meetings. Similar to a conventional 20 group, Fifer said members analyze financial data, formulate improvement strategies, assist one another in problem-solving and share experiences. “The close friendships—both personal and professional—created at the meetings are immensely valuable to the members,” said Fifer. “They know that anytime during the year, they can contact a known, trusted shop owner for advice. That is a good feeling.” “The performance group meetings have been outstanding. I find that just getting away from the business twice a year to attend the meetings improves my perspective significantly,” said Van Takemoto, owner of Island Fender in Hawaii. “The opportunity to benchmark, to collaborate with my peers in the industry and to set new goals has really sharpened my skills as a businessman. It’s made a difference to the bottom line!” Prior to the two days of individual performance group meetings, a variety of early-bird training sessions were offered the first day of the event.

Presentation Highlights First-time attendees were given an overview of what to expect during a presentation by Sam Sherrill of AkzoNobel Coatings.

(l to r) Jason Orlando, Jen Schmid, Shane Orlando, Arica Carranza, Daniel Carranza and Richard Rychlik

“This session was designed to prepare new NAPG attendees to effectively engage in performance group financial discussions,” said Fifer. Some of the topics Sherrill highlighted included income statements and balance sheets, body shop key performance indicators and comparative benchmarks. Jeff Peevy, president of the Auto-

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

motive Management Institute (AMi), discussed the importance of “soft skills,” which include listening, communication and interpersonal skills, and the impact they have on collision repair facilities. AMi is currently fo-

(l to r) Lee and Leila Bates, and Diane and Don Miller

cused on supporting the development of soft skills throughout the industry. Peevy also talked about the value of industry-based professional designations and said they not only increase professionalism, but also minimize the risk when hiring new employees. Tyler Brunatti from Podium Corp. shared tips on helping potential customers locate a body shop while searching online. He pointed out how difficult it can often be to attract new customers and recommended being actively involved in managing a company’s online reputation in order to stand out from the competition. Two representatives from I-CAR (Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair), Jason Bartanen and Josh McFarlin, talked about some of the significant changes the organization has undergone. These include the Reparability Technical Support (RTS) initiative, I-CAR’s new vehicle and technology curriculum, the expansion of hands-on skills development and an overview of the new Professional Development Program (PDP) and Gold Class programs. Body shops also learned how to leverage OE certification during a presentation by Robb Young of Assured Performance Network. Young provided tips to those in attendance on how to capitalize on being an OE Certified Collision Repair Provider (OE-CRP) and become a “five-star business performer.” Those unfamiliar with data analysis and net mining had the opportunity to hear from Don and Diane

Miller of Body Shop Nation. The Millers explained how net mining can help shops better identify their target audience and “find their perfect customer.” They said the approach enables businesses to deliver a stronger message to potential customers. Nick Schoolcraft of Phoenix Solutions Group shared insight on optimizing customer and employee experiences. Considering that many of today’s customers are becoming increasingly skeptical about collision repair facilities, Schoolcraft stressed the importance of having front-line employees focus on great customer interactions. He also talked about the key elements necessary to deliver great employee and customer experiences, which he said will lead to higher sales and growth. Kevin Wolfe of LeadersWay talked about a collaboration between his company and AkzoNobel that involves leadership training for a limited number of performance group members.

(l to r) Tim Ronak, Todd Edwards, Nada Jokic, Sam Sherrill and Bob DuBreuil

The final presentation during the early-bird training sessions was led by Dave Luehr of Elite Body Shop Solutions. Luehr, co-author of “The Secrets of America’s Greatest Body Shops,” talked about the six secrets he recommends body shops consider in order to be successful. Based on information from his book, which was released in 2017, the session included advice on how to “bust old beliefs” and stay out of what he referred to as “the victim zone.” He also talked about how to build a sustainable business model and provided tips on modern leadership. The next AkzoNobel North American Performance meeting will be held in Palm Beach, FL, on Feb. 20–22, 2019. For more information, contact Rick Fifer at Richard.Fifer @akzonobel.com or your local AkzoNobel representative or distributor.

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National Associations with Chasidy Rae Sisk

Chasidy Rae Sisk is a freelance technical writer from Wilmington, Delaware, who writes on a variety of fields and subjects, and grew up in a family of NASCAR fans. She can be contacted at crsisk@chasidyraesisk.com.

ARA Hosts Magical 75th Annual Convention and Exposition From Oct. 31 through Nov. 3, the Automotive Recycling Association (ARA) held its 75th Annual Convention and Exposition at the Walt Disney World Dolphin Resort in Orlando, FL.

Blalock explained. “Networking opportunities are one of the main reasons that automotive recyclers and industry suppliers attend year after year. These opportunities are priceless and allow automotive recyclers to benchmark themselves and their peers in the industry in order to learn from each other. The automotive recycling industry is unique in that a large percentage of businesses are family-owned and multi-generational, which really brings a family atmosFourteen countries were repre- phere to this annual gathering. sented, with industry professionals “Speakers ranged from fellow traveling from as far away as the recyclers, governmental officials and United Kingdom, Australia, Brazil, industry experts. ARA debuted new Canada, France, Germany, Hong peer-to-peer panels for both full-serKong, Japan, Netherlands, New vice and self-service operations, Zealand, Peru, Poland and South which proved to be among the most Korea. popular sessions. Our members need According to Sandy Blalock, to stay informed on the latest develexecutive director for ARA, “Nearly opments and trends in the automo900 professional automotive recy- tive repair industry. ARA’s Annual clers, industry vendors, suppliers and Convention, as well as ARA affiliate supporters made the trip to celebrate chapter association events, serve as a the association’s 75th anniversary at means of providing this type of vital the happiest place on Earth: Walt Dis- information. The networking and inney World.” formation-sharing that take place at these events also provide insight to our association leaders and staff that helps determine the direction of current and future ARA initiatives—it’s where we take the pulse of the industry.” The convention and exposition also provides ARA leaders with an opportunity to showcase member benefits and promote the associIncoming ARA President Jonathan Morrow (right) poses ation’s value by highlighting with outgoing President David Gold (left) the products and services The largest annual meeting of only offered by ARA. Talking to the professional automotive recy- members also provides the associacling industry in the world, ARA’s tion’s staff with a better understandAnnual Convention and Exposition ing of their members’ needs. provides a unique opportunity for atDuring the convention, Jonathan tendees to network with one another Morrow of M&M Auto Parts in Virand obtain top tier training. ginia succeeded David Gold from “Association-sponsored events Standard Auto Wreckers as the associlike the ARA Convention provide ation’s president. Additionally, ARA significant education and network- recognized some of the industry’s best ing opportunities, two of the most by distributing several awards. The beneficial reasons that attendees Automotive Recyclers Association of [keep] coming back year after year,” Rhode Island received the Affiliate


JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Chapter of the Year award, and Shan McMillon of Cocoa Auto Salvage in Florida was recognized as Regional Director of the Year. Nordstrom’s Automotive in South Dakota re-

Roger Schroder was honored as Member of the Year, and the coveted President’s Award was bestowed upon Jeff Schroder of Car-Part. Blalock added, “Many new programming features were debuted this year, including a Big Beach Bash that automotive recyclers and their entire families could enjoy. Attendees enjoyed the event, and the feedback has been positive. We have many volunteers, including recyclers and vendors, who work colAutomotive recyclers Lawrie Beacham (Australia), Ed MacDonald (Canada), Ted Taya (Japan) and Andy laboratively all year to plan a Latham (U.K). Standing is Steve Fletcher, executive program that meets the needs director of the Automotive Recyclers of Canada of our dynamic industry. I ceived the CAR Member of the Year believe the event measured up to all of award, while Gold Seal Member of our expectations.” ARA’s 76th Annual Convention the Year was awarded to Counselman’s Automotive Recycling in Al- & Exposition will take place Oct. 10– abama. CIECA’S Fred Iantorno 13, 2019 in Charlotte, NC. For more received the Apple Award, Car-Part’s information about ARA, visit a-r-a.org.


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Media and Publicity for Shops with Ed Attanasio

Ed Attanasio is an automotive journalist based in San Francisco, California. He can be reached at era39@aol.com.

Are You Forgetting About Half Your Customers by Not Catering to Women? In the U.S., there are half a million women actively looking to buy a new car at any given time. They have a serious influence on all automotive purchases (85 percent), from the showroom to the service lane. Yet, 74 percent of women feel misunderstood by the automotive industry. So, how as a body shop owner or manager do you cater to this significant percentage of your customer base? Shops all over the country have had great success thinking outside of the box. Many have produced series of how-to videos, sponsored networking/educational sessions at their facilities on a quarterly basis, embraced social media because women use sites such as Facebook and Instagram more than men do, and promoted community nonprofit organizations that appeal to women, such as Mothers Against Drunk

Drivers (MADD) and Toys for Tots. We interviewed several female body shop owners to find out how they’re getting 5-star Yelp reviews from female customers and getting recommended to their female customers’ friends and colleagues. Kathy Mello is the owner of TGIF Auto Body in Fremont, CA. She is the president of the California Autobody Association (CAA), a member of the Women’s Industry Network (WIN) and well-known for championing women who strive to enter the industry. An incident she encountered prior to working in the collision repair industry many years ago opened her eyes and taught her a valuable lesson. “I had the first-time experience of getting an estimate after backing into a basketball pole at my child’s school,” she said. “There were no

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rear-view cameras on Volkswagens back then. I went to the shop that my insurance company recommended (this was prior to DRPs). I announced myself to two ladies who were sitting at their desks in a halfway-decent office. One of the ladies called an estimator, who walked out to my vehicle without a word. I swear, he grunted several times and then wrote some things on a clipboard as I followed him. “I sat in my original waiting spot as he did his thing. The two ladies talked with each other as they worked. I was basically invisible. The estimator completed his work and handed me a copy without a word. I said thank you and exited. “When I began playing a role in the company my husband founded, I vowed that we would never treat anyone like that, no less a woman. As a result, we have a pleasant office

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with unisex decor. There are fresh flowers on most days provided by a local florist and a refreshment bar. We start by asking questions right away, not only about the claim and the vehicle, but about the people involved. Another important question is, ‘What is your greatest concern?’ We want to remove any anxiety if we can.” Tiffany Silva, owner of Accurate Auto Body in Richmond, CA, is president of the CAA’s East Bay chapter and is also on the organization’s board. “I don’t feel that we necessarily cater only to women,” she said. “I feel that we cater to each customer who walks through the door. Perhaps because I am a woman, I know how important it is to make sure that each customer feels that we are providing exceptional customer service and See Not Catering to Women?, Page 50

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National Events with Stacey Phillips

Stacey Phillips is a freelance writer and editor for the automotive industry. She has 20 years of experience writing for a variety of publications, and is co-author of “The Secrets of America’s Greatest Body Shops.” She can be reached at sphillips.autobodynews@gmail.com.

SCRS Red Carpet Awards Breakfast at SEMA Recognizes Collision Industry The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) hosted the second annual Red Carpet Awards Breakfast during SEMA on Oct. 31. During the special event, individuals and businesses in the collision repair industry were recognized for their outstanding leadership, dedication and commitment. “It’s always a pleasure to bring up new faces and new voices to help this industry recognize greatness,” said Aaron Schulenburg, executive director of SCRS. “This isn’t an SCRS event. This is a collision industry event for every organization that wants to recognize greatness in this industry.” Awards were given out by the Automotive Management Institute (AMi), Automotive Service Association (ASA), BodyShop Business, CIECA, I-CAR, National Auto Body Council (NABC) and SCRS. “Today is about recognizing and celebrating the greatness within our industry,” said Rissa Matsumoto of Auto Body Hawaii, who emceed the event.

water, president of AEII. This year, Peevy said there were close to 100 individuals who graduated from the AMi program. In addition to holding a graduation ceremony earlier this year, 11 individuals were recognized during the breakfast for earning a professional designation: Ken Brown, Bruce Burrow, Maria Carrillo, Robert Byron Gottfred, Wesley Jackson, Kandie JenningsMolloy, Scott Kaboos, Tony Passwater, Carl Preston Riggenbach, John Shoemaker and Kenneth Thayer. “Learning may be defined as a transformative process of taking in information that when internalized and mixed with our experiences, changes what we know and builds on what we do. It is based on input, process and reflection,” said Peevy. “It is what changes us. I’m a strong believer and advocate that learning is the only source of a sustainable competitive advantage.”

Automotive Service Association (ASA) Roy Schnepper, president of ASA, announced the recipient of the association’s Phoenix Award, Chuck Automotive Management Institute Sulkala. The award is given by the (AMi) ASA Collision Operations Committee Mark Claypool, Optima Worldwide, in honor of an individual in the colliwas presented with AMi’s Collision sion repair industry who has devoted Repair Training Provider of the Year his or her career to advancing profesaward. Jeff Peevy, president of AMi, sionalism with leadership, integrity said the well-known industry leader and personal strength. For many has been a big supporter of the organ- years, Sulkala has been an active ization and leads many AMi-ap- participant in industry associations proved courses that have been well including ASA, I-CAR, Collision received. Industry Conference (CIC) and NABC. “This is quite nice,” said Sulkala. “It’s part of why we’re all here and why we work together.” He said that regardless of what side you’re on, where you’re from, what you do or AMi recognized 11 individuals during the Red Carpet what association you belong Awards breakfast for earning a professional designation to, everyone is part of this Two former board of trustees industry. members received an award for Out“I would hope that when you go standing Dedication, Commitment home, you give a special hug to your and Personal Leadership: Bob Keith, family because they are the ones Assured Performance, and Tony Pass- who allow you to do this, come to 48

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

these meetings and do the things we do together,” said Sulkala.

tion to mobile data standards. The Outstanding Contribution award was given to Joanna Cohen, Car-Part.com, who has primarily foBodyShop Business Sean Donohue, publisher of cused on procurement and estimatBodyShop Business, announced the ing messages. Two individuals were named for magazine’s Multi-Shop (MSO) Executive of the Year winner: Vartan Outstanding Leadership. Leslie RedJerian Jr., director of operations for field from Genpact received the Caliber Collision/H&V Collision award for her work on the photo esCenter. The MSO has been involved timating committee, and Darrell Amberson from LaMettry’s Collision was recognized for his involvement with the scanning committee. NuGen IT was named the Electronic Commerce Company of the Year. Pete Tagliapietra, business development manager, accepted the award on behalf of the company. Marlow explained that CIECA’s board (l to r) Clint Marlow, CIECA chairman of the board; Pete of trustees extends this Tagliapietra of NuGen IT, recipient of the Electronic Commerce Company of the Year award; and Fred Iantorno, award every year to a comCIECA’s executive director pany in recognition of its in numerous charitable activities over outstanding leadership, contribution the years and was one of the first in and dedication to furthering CIECA’s the Albany, NY, capital region to in- mission in the collision industry. troduce the lean production process, which drastically improved the busi- I-CAR ness’s KPIs. Tim O’Day, I-CAR’s chairman of Louis Giordano, Giordano’s the board of directors, announced the Collision, received the Single-Shop I-CAR Chairman’s Award, which is Executive of the Year award. A mem- presented to the individual or organber of the Long Island Auto Body ization that has made a significant or Repairmen’s Association since 1970, extraordinary contribution to the IGiordano has owned three shops and CAR organization. I-CAR honored worked in both collision repair and Clark Plucinski, who has nearly 50 insurance. years of experience in the collision “The winners of these presti- repair industry. Plucinski is curgious awards are true collision repair rently the executive director of the visionaries who have experienced Collision Repair Education Foungreat success or innovative thinking, dation (CREF) and chairman of the overcome challenges and perse- Certified Automotive Parts Associvered,” said Donohue. ation (CAPA). “Our wonderful industry is filled with many success stories by CIECA Clint Marlow, director at Allstate people who have not only made their Insurance and CIECA’s 2018 chair- marks, but also have fulfilled their man of the board of trustees, an- commitment to helping others estabnounced CIECA’s award winners lish their own careers,” said John Van Alstyne, CEO and president of this year. Andy Bober, ARMS Business I-CAR. Jeff and Jeanne Silver, Solutions, received an Outstanding Dedication award for his contribu- CARSTAR Mundelein, were pre-

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sented with the Russ Verona Memorial Award, which recognizes a business that demonstrates a strong dedication to training and reinforces the positive image of the collision repair industry. CARSTAR Mundelein has held a Gold Class designation since 1996 and was chosen based on the owners’ extensive industry involvement, their dedication to training and the promotion of career opportunities at schools in and around their local community.

John Mosley (left) and the Mississippi Collision Repair Association received the SCRS Affiliate Association Award. Aaron Schulenburg, SCRS executive director, is pictured on right

Van Alstyne then shared information about the Jeff Silver Award. Silver Continued from Page 47

Not Catering to Women?

treating everyone equally. “My office staff asks each customer if they would like us to go over their estimate with them line by line. We strive to make sure every customer understands the repairs needed to their vehicle. We don’t just simply hand them paperwork and expect that they’ll understand the terminology in the estimate. I believe this is the most important element in providing excellent customer service. Another important thing is to take the time to explain and educate not only about the claims process, but exactly what is required to repair the vehicle properly. We make sure that no questions or concerns go unaddressed. Although these are standard procedures, they may be more pertinent with a woman, particularly if she is doing this for the first time.” Nancy Friedman, president of Telephone Doctor Customer Service, trains automotive companies on how to enhance the customer expe50

served as the CEO of I-CAR and is considered a pioneer of the I-CAR Gold Class and Platinum recognition programs. The award, presented to Rick Cope, Cope Collision, was established “to maintain Jeff’s amazing legacy, a true and deep passion for training and professional growth,” said Van Alstyne. He said Cope is a strong proponent of continuing education, and his shop has been I-CAR Gold Class since 2007. National Auto Body Council (NABC) NABC Awards Committee Co-chairs Marie Peevy, owner of Automotive Training Coordinators, and Debbie Teter, Garmat’s director of sales and marketing, presented the NABC awards. Peevy said the Body Image Award, which was given to Moppert Brothers Collision, recognizes a positive, attractive and well-designed facility. “Harry and his brother Steve continually work to certify their shops and repair vehicles to OEM procedures,” she said. Kevin Thomas, Town East Ford, received the NABC Award of rience and cited several main ways to achieve it. “First, we want to be listened to and valued,” she said. “Making eye contact is important, so don’t keep looking at your watch and other people when you’re talking to me. Smile—because we’re suckers for that, and use the same handshake you do with a man. We don’t want a wet fish handshake that offers three fingers; we hate that. And one last thing: Put a hook in the ladies’ room so that we can hang up our bags. It sounds like a little thing, but the little things add up. “In short, how can you make your shop more attractive to female customers? For one, women care about the cleanliness of your facility and like shops that cater to children because they’re usually in tow. If you have a little kiddie section with toys and books, that also goes a long way with the ladies.”


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JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Distinction, which celebrates extraordinary efforts by individuals who give of themselves to others. As a result of the business’s strong culture, Teter said Town East Ford has very little turnover and the shop’s

The March Taylor Memorial Fund Kina’ole Award was given to Petra Schroeder. She is pictured with Gary Wano (l), who received the award in 2017, and industry veteran Jeff Hendler

CSI is continually over 95 percent.

Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) Schulenburg announced the recipient of the SCRS Affiliate Association

Award, which is given very infrequently to associations that stand out amongst others. “Normally it is reserved in instances where other associations look up to one of their peers for the work they have done or for the stage they have set in the industry,” explained Schulenburg. John Mosley and the Mississippi Collision Repair Association were recognized. “This particular organization worked with state regulatory bodies and with other industry groups to develop a consumer guide to insurance and auto body repair through a very collaborative effort that ended in a product,” said Schulenburg. “I think all in the industry can look to and utilize it as a reference book for their own states.” Jeff Hendler, SCRS historian, then presented the March Taylor Memorial Fund Kina’ole Award to “Collisionista” Petra Schroeder, who retired from Axalta and remains very active in the industry. Hendler said the award honors the name and spirit of March Taylor. The Hawaiian word “Kina’ole” means “Doing the

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right thing, in the right way, at the right time, in the right place, to the right person, for the right reason, with the right feeling, the first time.” Hendler is an administrator of the March Taylor Memorial Fund, which was created when Taylor suddenly passed away after a scuba diving accident. “He was a mentor to many and friend to all of us,” said Hendler. “The award was not for March, but it’s about the spirit of March. It’s an award that is presented to people who absolutely embrace March’s spirit—Kina’ole.” He said Schroeder has that same spirit and is a mentor to many in the industry. “I had the pleasure to know March much too late in my life, but in the short time I had the pleasure of knowing him, it was just amazing,” said Schroeder. “It means a ton to me to receive this today and to be able to be in front of you. Thank you so much—you have no idea what it means to me.”


2 Veteran Families Receive Cars Through NABC Recycled Rides in VA by Amy Simpson, WRIC.com

Tis the season to give back. On Dec. 4, exactly three weeks before Christmas, two veteran families in Virginia got a gift without a price tag: a car. The cars were both wrapped in bows—just like in those holiday commercials. This holiday season, these two veteran families have gained the gift of independence. “Reliable transportation is something that many of us take for granted, but it’s something that’s so necessary,” said Ashley Ray with Soldiers’ Angels, a nonprofit that supports veterans and men and women in uniform. One of the car recipients served 14 years in the Army. He said the shiny red Toyota is a gift that will keep on giving to his family. “The long commutes that I used to have on public transportation—I can eliminate that right now,” said Joey Burrell of Hampton, VA. The car donations were possible because of a little magic from



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Che and Jerri Griffin were nearly in shock when they saw a slate-colored SUV waiting for them. Both spouses served in the military and said they had been relying on Uber to get around. “We had a vehicle that was working that went down,” said Che,

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a Navy veteran from Hampton. “You know [economically] the way things are—made it hard for us.” Now the Griffin family is overjoyed with their Dodge SUV. They told 8News they’re most excited to have a car big enough to fit the whole family. “I don’t know where we’d be right now,” said Che. “We’d probably still be waiting at home for a blessing to come by.” Both the Burrell and Griffin families were nominated for the Recycled Rides program by Soldiers’ Angels. “A lot of people had a hand in this and made it work, and I’m really thankful for that,” said Griffin. Joey smiled from ear to ear as he checked out his new ride. “That’s what I’m thankful for the most,” he said. “That people are looking out for all of us.” Caliber Collision said that since this program began, it has given reliable transportation to more than 300 people in need. We thank WRIC.com for reprint permission

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A Profile of the Evolving Collision Repair Marketplace in the U.S. and Canada by The Romans Group LLC

The 13th annual white paper, A 2017 Profile of the Evolving U.S. and Canadian Collision Repair Marketplace, is now available. The four industry constructs or pillars that we identified over a decade ago, Consolidation, Contraction, Convergence, and Constructive Transformation, remain in place and are now stronger than ever. They continue to influence the collision repair industry’s long-term structural transformation within the entire auto physical damage landscape, affecting numerous dynamic macro market changes. However, the context of what they represent has evolved in ways that broaden their influence and impact on the future of the collision repair industry.

A summary of the current state of the four pillars underlying the continuation of the collision repair industry’s structural transformation:

Consolidation ▪ Slowing – strategic clusters, tuckin platforms ▪ Segment market share continues to grow-scale matters ▪ Scale as a competitive advantage or scale is fail

Contraction ▪ Stabilizing - temporary equilibrium ▪ Simple and complex alliances and partnerships ▪ Differentiation and diversification

Convergence ▪ Omnipresent – moving at extreme 52

speed ▪ Confluence of prevailing conditions driving industry transformation ▪ Repairers are at the intersection of a traditional business model and practices and the innovative, disruptive technology driving change

32.8 percent of revenue processed in the U.S. in 2016. From 2006 to 2017, the Top 4 MLO consolidators

MLOs in Canada, the combined larger segment has a significant 78.4 percent of all the private passenger in-

have experienced robust growth due to continued incremental organic growth, multiple-location platform acquisitions, an increasing number of single-location acquisitions, and a brownfield and Greenfield build strategy. The following chart reflects the ranking of the Top 10 multiple-location operators and networks for 2017. When ABRA’s franchise revenue is excluded, Boyd/Gerber moves into the third position.

surer and consumer-paid market. Under the All Repairers column, we see a combination of banner, franchise and independent groups represented in the Top 10 ranking category. Although the U.S. has seen an increase in consolidation within the multiple-location operator segments, Canada remains significantly more consolidated in the revenue generated by the combined franchise and banner and ≥$10 million MLOs. In Canada, this combined segment group represents a 78.4 percent market share versus the combined 35.9 percent share for the same U.S. segments.

Constructive Transformation ▪ Long-term, multi-faceted, multisegment integration within various auto physical damage segments ▪ More complex, slower than anticipated, integration challenges, unintentional consequences U.S. Collision Repair Industry Collision repair revenue in all key market segments has increased since 2006. This growth is reflected most significantly in the sustained expan-

sion progress by the four large independent consolidators and in the remaining ≥$20 MLO independent and dealer repair segment. The 96 ≥$20 million MLOs represent 26.9 percent of the industry’s market size which has grown from 24.6 percent in 2016 and is significantly higher than their 2006 share of 9.1 percent. Revenue trends in the multiple-location network franchisors, MLNs, and in the $10-$19 million independent and dealer segments have been essentially flat. Together, the four segments of top consolidators, ≥$20 million independents and dealers, multiplelocation franchise networks, and $10-$19M MLOs represent annual revenue of 35.9 percent of the total addressable market, as compared to

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Canadian Collision Repair Market The Canadian market continues to consolidate with the franchise and banner segment now representing a

significant 58.1 percent share of the Canadian private insurance auto market. When you add the ≥$10 million

Within the U.S. market, the ≥$20 million independent and dealer See A Profile, Page 59


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Mike Anderson Presents ‘Using the Subaru Technical Information System (STIS) – Part 1’ by Chasidy Rae Sisk

On Tuesday, Nov. 27, Mike Anderson of Collision Advice presented the sixth webinar in his “Learn to Research, Research to Learn” series, during which he explored “Using the Subaru Technical Information System (STIS) – Part 1.” He was joined by Nicole Riedel, whole sale parts specialists for Subaru of America, as well as Subaru technical service representative J. J. Marino and director of parts Dave Zastrow. The webinar was created by Collision Advice in collaboration with Subaru. After reading the antitrust guidelines, Anderson reiterated that he decided to host these webinars because the results of his annual “Who Pays for What?” surveys, conducted in conjunction with the Crash Network, led him to determine that shops are not researching OEM repair procedures 100 percent of the time as they should be. As a result of this finding, Collision Advice has been hosting monthly webinars, each one focusing on a different OEM, to raise awareness of the resources each OEM offers to research repair procedures. Anderson plans to guide attendees on a step-by-step tour of each specific OEM’s website and advise on how to improve search results. He will also demonstrate how to research some common procedures needed by collision repairers, explore the differences between an OEM scan tool and aftermarket scan tool and investigate OEM parts information and support tools. In addition to an explanation of how to register, log in and use the STIS website, the first part of the Subaru webinar series included a review of the additional features offered on the Subaru STIS website, a discussion of Subaru’s requirements pertaining to scanning and an exploration of Subaru’s certification program. Anderson began by explaining that Subaru’s position statements are available at oemonestop.com and crashrepairinfo.com, but they are not available within STIS. He emphasized the importance of looking at the OEM position statements before each repair, showing Subaru’s position statements on pre- and post54

scanning and the use of aftermarket windshield glass for Subaru vehicles equipped with Eyesight. Moving on to how to access Subaru repair procedures, Anderson directed attendees to Techinfo.Subaru.com, pointing out that it’s important to use Internet Explorer (IE) 11 or newer for all website features to work optimally. Users can register by clicking “purchase and create

On the bottom right side, you can access your five most recently saved reference links, but an extended list is available by clicking “show more,” though Anderson warned that the number of saved reference links is limited. If you get maxed out, you will need to delete some to make room for the new ones you want to save. Exploring the icons used on STIS, Anderson explained that the down-

subscription,” which will take them to the registration page to complete the process. Subscriptions are available for three days at $34.95, 30 days at $299.95, or one year at $2,499.95. Two experiences are available: the online reference or the service diagnostics, which is available by PDF versus HTML. Once you click on Information, you can select Special Tool Information, which takes you to information about purchasing Subaru’s scan tool, Subaru Select Monitor (SSM), as well as the minimum computer operating requirements. Anderson advised, “When I was in the OEM repair procedures and I was trying to find documentation to educate an insurer about why I needed to scan a vehicle or utilize a scan tool, sometimes I would just use the term Subaru Select Monitor or SSM as a key search term.” Under Information, the Immobilizer Key Access area of the website is only available to NASTF members and authorized dealers, but at the bottom of the page, you can click on Technical Information System to access STIS. After logging into the website, the upper left-hand quadrant shows the five most recently posted documents on STIS; clicking “show more” will provide an extended list of the past 90 days. In the upper right-hand quadrant, the Quick Reference Search allows you to use an advanced search (using the vehicle’s VIN number) or a quick search. At the bottom left side, users can see their five most recently viewed items.

ward-pointing arrow is for viewing and downloading. Hovering over the icon allows you to view the description, while clicking on it launches a new window as a PDF that you can download, print or save. He noted that the Chrome PDF viewer plug-in must be enabled to launch in a new window and reminded attendees that IE is the preferred browser. The star icon allows users to save frequently used docu-

JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

ments to the Saved Reference Links for easy access, while the X icon removes items from Saved Reference Links. Under Online Reference, users can select the type of publication they want to view, including owner manual, service manual, bulletins and more. Using the VIN number is most accurate, but if that’s not available, using the model year, carline and trim is another option for searching. When performing a keyword search, Anderson sarcastically quipped that “only the first 500 relevant documents will return, so I recommend selecting a publication type or model to narrow down the search.” Noting that all OEM websites’ search features work differently, Anderson explained how to narrow down search results by using “and,” “or,” “not” and “minus” to specify the query. Subaru’s coolest feature, according to Anderson, is the wildcard (%) operator, which returns documents with zero or more characters in the wildcard. “Subaru has some really amaz-

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ing search features [that are] probably more advanced than any other OEM that we’ve so far done a webinar for,” Anderson noted as he demonstrated searching the STIS website and how to download documents. Navigating the Technician Reference Booklet, Anderson explored Subaru’s implied restrictions on rear bumper repairs for certain vehicles, stressing the need to scan a vehicle. He also showed where the booklet forbade painting of the sonar sensors because doing so can prevent the sensors from functioning properly. “I found this technician reference booklet to be invaluable to me from a collision repair perspective,” Anderson said. He then moved on to the body repair manual, found under the Service Manual tab. There are two different types of formats and layouts for the body repair manuals, depending on the year, make and model of the vehicle. Marino explained that some of the differences for the BRZ model are related to Subaru’s collaboration with Toyota on this model, which means this manual has a different feel. Scanning through the BRZ body

repair manual, Anderson looked at work notices and precautions to show that Subaru requires repair of panels related to weld burn damage and warned that they are “not-included” operations. Showing where the document instructs technicians to check for diagnostic trouble codes as a precaution for using an electric welder, Anderson reemphasized, “I really saw something that blew my mind … The only way I can check the vehicle for diagnostic trouble codes is to use a scan tool, ladies and gentlemen. This was an amazing document to me.” Under structural outline, Subaru identifies which parts are aluminum, and the damage diagnosis document illustrates how the specific vehicle is designed to divert the inertial forces and also identifies where to look for possible hidden damage. Anderson showed an example of another body repair manual to show the differences between most of these manuals and the BRZ manual. He demonstrated how to use the table of contents to link to the specific section of the document. The foreword section provides an intro-

duction to the symbols that will be used in the manual as well as precautions about specific substrates of materials used. Highlighting a section of the manual that stated to “avoid previously welded locations,” Anderson noted that this would preclude the use of a LKQ quarter panel in the repair since it would require disregarding this caution from Subaru. Anderson continued exploring the body repair manual, looking at use of foam, the body construction section, body reference points and panel replacement, which identifies how Subaru wants each specific component repaired. As Anderson explored the body sealing portion of the document, he reminded attendees, “Keep in mind, when you want to get paid from an insurance company, the four negotiation questions are: Is it required? Is it included? Is there a pre-determined time, and if not, what is it worth? On the first basis, you have to prove that what you’re asking for is required, and what I love about this is that it shows me that on this specific vehicle make and model, it’s telling me where it’s seam sealed at… I found

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this to be a really valuable document and critical to my success with getting reimbursed from an insurer for a not-included operation.” The webinar continued with Anderson identifying the OEM’s requirements related to anticorrosion wax, undercoating, damping seat, insulators and plastic parts and materials. Because Anderson had received feedback that previous webinars ran too long, he announced that he was cutting off the first webinar at 45 minutes but provided an overview of what will be covered in the second part of the Subaru webinar series, including but not limited to: what to do if you can’t find what you are looking for in STIS, symbols used for one-time use parts, how Subaru’s Star Link impacts collision repairers, what collision repairers need to know from the owner’s manual, an in-depth look at the Service Diagnostics tab and an update on the Subaru certification program. Riedel then provided a brief update on the Subaru certification program. “We will be sending out an e-blast See Mike Anderson Presents, Page 58

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OE Shop Certification with Stacey Phillips

Stacey Phillips is a freelance writer and editor for the automotive industry. She has 20 years of experience writing for a variety of publications, and is co-author of “The Secrets of America’s Greatest Body Shops.” She can be reached at sphillips.autobodynews@gmail.com.

Subaru of America Prepares to Launch Its Certified Collision Center Network Program Enrollment opens Jan. 1, 2019 Subaru of America is currently preparing to launch the Subaru Certified Collision Center Network to independent shops across the country. Nicole Riedel, wholesale parts specialist for Subaru of America, recently shared information about the program requirements and what collision repair facilities should expect. Riedel reviewed the program and all its onboarding elements during a recent webinar hosted by Dave Luehr’s Elite Body Shop Academy. This included information about tools and equipment, facility standards and the training and technician requirements. “We’re excited to begin offering our certified collision network to independents across the country,” said Riedel. “For the last few months, we have been conducting a pilot program and initial launch with our retailers, and now we are preparing to

launch the program to the public. On Nov. 28, we announced to our waitlist that enrollment will open on Jan. 1, 2019.”

What are the main goals of the Subaru Certified Collision Network?


The goals of the Subaru Certified Collision Network are a little different than what some people think. Rather than it being about selling parts or going after aftermarket companies about the parts they sell, we’re not trying to go against anything negative. Instead, the program centers around proper and safe repairs. We at Subaru really care about our owners; we consider the Subaru family one big happy family. We love dogs, we love kids, we love the outdoors and we just want to spread the



love to the collision industry. One of the ways Subaru has set out to serve vehicle owners better is to make sure that at the time of an accident they are getting treated the same way they would throughout

health, community, environment and animal organizations—to set Subaru apart through our deeds and the deeds of our partners and to be unlike any other car company by doing what is right and good, just for the sake of doing it. We’re asking our collision partners to make this commitment as well. The Subaru Love Promise is supported by five different initiatives focused on the Environment (Subaru Loves the Earth), Health & Wellness (Subaru Loves to Care), Community (Subaru Loves to Help), Education Subaru of America is preparing to launch its certified (Subaru Loves Learning) collision center network program and Animal Welfare (Subany Subaru experience: with love, aru Loves Pets), where we partner respect and integrity. We also want with charitable organizations to do to ensure that the collision centers in- philanthropy, volunteerism, etc. terested in doing the right thing for As part of the terms and conditheir owners are being elevated to a tions for our Subaru Certified Collipoint where everyone can know that sion Network, we are mandating that about them. collision centers complete at least Not all collision centers are cre- one volunteer effort throughout the ated equally, and we want to raise the year with a 501(c)(3) organization to flag and provide awareness of the fa- make sure they are reaching out and cilities out there that are doing a re- doing what they can for their comally good job.

Q: A:

Who should join the Subaru Certified Collision Network?

We encourage anyone who believes in the same values as Subaru to jump on board with our network, and we can fulfill the Subaru Love Promise together. Non-Subaru dealers can take part as well, as long as they have the required equipment and follow our processes. How would you explain Subaru’s Love Promise, and what does it entail?


The Subaru Love Promise is a commitment that we share with our retailers and Subaru of America employees. It is a promise to do right by our community by partnering with nonprofit education,


JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Who is handling most of the administration for Subaru’s program?


The core of our program is done in partnership with Wadsworth International. They are handling most of the administration, all of the onsite audits and customer service. They are doing a great job with retailers and pilot shops. In addition, we elected to use the Enterprise Rent-A-Car ARMS® (Automated Rental Management System) Automotive Suite to upload all of the collision center profiles. If a collision center already has an ARMS profile, the facility can link up to it.


What is the cost of the program and what does that fee include?


There is a $3,200 annual fee that covers a one-year subscription to the AutoWatch web portal where a facility uploads its documents. An annual quality repair production audit is also included, as well as access to Subaru Technical Information System (STIS), which includes details about all of our repair procedures. Included in the cost of the program, Subaru will also manage a facility’s KPIs, such as cycle time. If a shop is struggling in any area, we’ll work closely with employees to help them improve. All participants will receive an initial welcome kit, Nicole Riedel, wholesale parts specialist for Subaru of a certification plaque, an inAmerica, recently shared information about the program door/outdoor banner, winrequirements dow clings, estimate sleeves munities and fulfilling that Love and access to profit boosters, a webPromise in every regard. Donations site with downloadable marketing are accepted, but they will not fulfill materials such as fliers, email/digital the requirement. Actual outreach and materials and logos. Collision centers (volunteer) time are required. will also be featured on www.SubWe believe this sets Subaru’s aru.com and the ARMS profiles. certified program apart from others. It What is the importance of upis the heart and soul of Subaru, and loading documentation to Auit’s very important to us that we carry it out through every initiative we take. toWatch?




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autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


We feel it reduces some of a shop’s liability. A lot of the liability falls on the collision centers to prove that these repairs were done properly. That can be a huge burden. When all of the information is uploaded into AutoWatch, shops have some evidence to prove that they were really doing the right thing. AutoWatch also provides real-time updates on vehicles for customers, which builds trust and helps them feel like a part of the process and secure in the work that the collision center is doing. It also offers the capability to track Customer Service Index (CSI). At the end of a repair, customers will receive a survey through AutoWatch where they can rate their experience and we can ensure the brand experience is being met.


Q: A:

Does a shop need to be I-CAR Gold Class-certified?

Yes, a shop must be I-CAR Gold Class-certified, and no more than two positions can be held by any one person at a repair facility. I believe I-CAR has adopted this rule as well.

Q: A:

What is Subaru’s position on scanning?

We recently changed our scanning position statement to say that pre- and post-scanning are required. Previously, it said they were recommended. We believe that this is integral since there are so many things that can happen in an accident. We know that collision centers often have a hard time pushing this through with Continued from Page 55

Mike Anderson Presents

this week announcing to everyone when we will be opening to independent collision centers,” she said. “We want to thank everyone for their patience. We’ve wanted to give our retailers a good running start on being part of the network since they’ve been so loyal, and now we’re ready to open up to everyone else and will be anAUTOBODY


insurance providers, and if changing scanning to ‘required’ is something that helps collision centers do the right thing, then by all means, we are happy to help out. The other aspect we are requiring with scanning is that shops can either use the Subaru-specific SSM4 diag-

and what should I expect?

sure that the business and the work is there so shops can build relationships and have good communication with customers. We have plenty of open space across the United States. I doubt we will turn many people away, especially from the onset, so if you’re interested, please sign up (details below).

Currently, the program is open to all Subaru retailers and independent collision centers. We are opening this program to anyone who is a hand-raiser right now. We gave retailers about six months to jump on board and secure their place in their area, and those that were interested have done that. There is no referral or sponsorship needed from a retailer to enroll. Positions will be assigned in order of inquiry and based on market demand. We’re using many metrics in each area, The program is open to all Subaru retailers and independent such as units in operation collision centers (UIO), insurance claims nostic tool and update the software on data and Subaru sales to determine their own, or use the asTech system, market demand and how many colwhich is a great tool for people who lision centers we can have in a given are working on all different makes and geographical area. We’re not using models. Either of those is accepted. the typical retailer area responsibility No other equipment is approved. The model because the UIO for aging veonly reason we are requiring those hicles are very different than a sales tools is that we can measure them and area. We are trying to do what’s fair make sure they are up-to-date to en- because we don’t want to oversatusure a safe and proper repair. rate the market. We want to make

Q: A:

Are there any other tooling requirements?

Rather than requiring specific brands and models, the required tools are based on specifications. If shops have a welder that meets the specs for a safe and proper repair based on STIS, we are happy to have them use that.


As an independent shop, when can I register for the program

nouncing that date this week.” Anderson and Riedel fielded some questions and feedback from attendees as the webinar drew to a close. This webinar is available on the Collision Advice website and YouTube channel. The second part of Collision Advice’s Subaru webinar series took place on Thursday, Dec.13 at 2 p.m. EST. Anderson concluded, “We look forward to seeing you next month. Make it a great day!”



JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com


There have been rumors that the program has been pushed back. Is this true?


Definitely not. We wanted to make sure all of the retailers knew the date before we told everybody else because they had invested in the brand and have worked with us over the years to make Subaru what it has become. We felt there was a sense of loyalty to them to make sure they understood what was happening before we made the announcement to the public. If you are on the waiting list, you’ll receive an email. For more information and to sign up for the program/be added to the waiting list, email: info@subaru certifiedcollision.com or call 877257-0046.


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Continued from Page 52

A Profile

MLO segment is the largest while the franchise and banner network MLOs remain the dominate business model in Canada. When ranking all repairers for the U.S. and Canada, and consolidating those that operate in both countries, four operate in both the U.S and Canada while five are in the U.S. only and one is solely in Canada. These Top 10 U.S. and Canada combined repair organizations represent 22.6 percent of the combined collision repair revenue, an increase since 2012. This revenue is managed through significantly more locations than in 2012, representing 10.1 percent of combined collision repair locations for the U.S. and Canada for 2017. Since 2010, Canada has lost a significant number of its collision repair locations. Compared to the U.S., Canadian average annual repair revenue in 2016 was 54.7 percent lower than the U.S. average. As a sign of ongoing consolidation,

the average revenue per repair facility for both Canada and the U.S. has been steadily increasing over the last few years. As we discuss in this edition of our annual paper, there are a broad base of prevailing market conditions

vehicles; OE certification programs, and the technician shortage. The pace of collision industry consolidation and contraction has shown signs of slowing down over the past 15 months. MSO consolidators will continue to grow and will do

simultaneously impacting the transformation taking place within the wide-ranging collision repair ecosystem. Five secular trends are causing more immediated challenges and opportunities for repairers and many other relevant constituent groups including auto insurance companies: telematics, 5G and the connected car; ADAS and the evolving autonomous

so in the immediate future through single shop or smaller MLO platform acquisitions, brownfields, and Greenfields. Larger MLO market share and scale are now a clear competitive advantage that is also viewed today as a competitive asset. Our future view remains consistent that the collision repair industry over the next decade will

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involve the continued long-term, multi-segmented structural transformation which will impact the entire auto physical damage ecosystem for all existing and many new companies providing products, services, software, and technology that in some way touches cars in the U.S. and Canada. We believe that the market segments profiled will continue to gain share within the collision repair industry and expand their revenue base, both through acquisitions and by adopting a diversification strategy that leads them to incorporate new lines of business services over the next few years, both in the U.S. and Canada. Our annual report, A 2017 Profile of the Evolving U.S. and Canada Collision Repair Marketplace, is now available. The report contains the complete results of our research and analysis for 2017 including over 50 charts and graphs over 70 pages with historical trends and a future view. The report can be purchased by contacting Mary Jane Kurowski of The Romans Group LLC at maryjane @romans-group.com OHIO

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autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS


AkzoNobel Turns Over Keys for Refurbished Car Program to NABC Recycled Rides

This holiday season, even more people in need and the organizations that help them are getting support for getting around, thanks to the merger of two recycled car programs. AkzoNobel is handing over the keys for its Acoat® Selected Benevolence Program to combine it with the National Auto Body Council’s (NABC) Recycled Rides™ initiative. The latter has its roots in the AkzoNobel program. “Our program has enabled collision repair professionals across the nation to help thousands of their neighbors in need during the holiday season by presenting them with reconditioned cars,” said Rick Fifer, AkzoNobel central business services manager for automotive and specialty coatings. “By combining our customers’ efforts with the NABC Recycled Rides program, our industry will now be able to kick its community support into even higher gear.” The Original Driver The recycled car initiative started in the late 1990s, when Dave Adams, owner of Dave Adams Classic Collision in Orem, UT, saw mechanically sound vehicles with minor body Continued from Page 29

Phoenix Solutions

ital experience with Accenture, a global consulting firm specializing in digital transformation, helped PSG develop a digital marketing solution that was built specifically for the collision industry while incorporating relevant future digital trends. PSG’s Digital Presence Management product features 17 distinct solutions built to help body shops market themselves online more effectively, including the ability to generate first-party reviews through SMS or email and optimize their website for both voice and local search. The product also features a full suite of digital analytics, Schoolcraft explained.

damage go to salvage yards. Looking to turn the corner for disadvantaged neighbors, Adams and his technicians decided to donate their skills to recondition these vehicles

refinish products and a big red bow for each donated car. Since then, this community relations effort has helped technicians recondition and donate more than

and gift them to community members in need. The program took off. Adams and his team found it rewarding to help others, vehicles were saved from the scrapyard, community members gained transportation, and Adams’ shop received positive attention. In 1999, Adams shared his success story at the AkzoNobel Acoat Selected North American Performance Group conference, a semi-annual event that brings together collision repair professionals. AkzoNobel decided to help and announced that it would sponsor any group member following in Adams’ footsteps by providing Sikkens brand

500 cars, providing as many families with the means to get to work, school, stores, medical appointments and more.

“We are so excited about this new product,” he said. “Using the help of artificial intelligence, we are finally able to marry our traditional collision customer research with a shop’s online sentiment to provide a shop everything it requires to manage its customer experience and online reputation all in one place. We want to help shops realize that they don’t have to spend a significant amount of money to drive traffic to their website, especially since the majority of people already know who they are. With our new Digital Presence Management program, we have eliminated all of the guesswork and can now help a shop optimize its online presence while gaining a better understanding of how to market its business to ensure the highest level of ROI.”

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JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS / autobodynews.com

Inspiring Others In 2006, the National Auto Body Council took notice of the positive impact the Benevolence program made and asked for AkzoNobel’s guidance to help create its renowned NABC Recycled Rides program. Since launching it in 2007, NABC members have donated nearly 2,000 vehicles to individuals and nonprofit organizations. This year, AkzoNobel and the NABC are merging their programs,

so even more community members will get access to the transportation they need for their daily lives. “Our NABC Recycled Rides program is the perfect way to exemplify the professionalism and integrity of the collision repair industry,” said Bill Garoutte, president and CEO of the National Auto Body Council. “By bringing AkzoNobel’s Benevolence program participants into the NABC Recycled Rides program, we are uniquely positioned to provide the gift of transportation to even more deserving people in need.” “We are incredibly proud of our Acoat Selected members who have helped others through our Benevolence program, which has come a long way over the past 19 years,” added Fifer. “Now, we’re just as proud to officially transition it to the NABC Recycled Rides program and help even more people.” How To Participate Collision repair shops interested in participating in the NABC Recycled Rides program can find more information at https://www.nationalauto bodycouncil.org/recycled-rides/.



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IAA Announces Opening of New Flint, MI, Branch

Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc. (IAA) recently announced the opening of its new facility in Flint, MI. The new branch is IAA’s third strategic location serving the northern Midwest market of Michigan. The site boasts a new state-of-the-art facility and its 18 acres allow for future expansion. “At IAA, we are always working to improve the customer experience, and this new facility, with the latest auction technology, allows us to upgrade the buying and selling experience for our customers who previously visited our Bay City facility,” said John Kett, CEO and president of IAA. The new IAA facility in Flint replaces the IAA Great Lakes facility in Bay City, MI. IAA Flint will host auctions on Tuesdays, with preview days held every Monday.


AASP National Elects New Executive Board During SEMA

tional Board had confidence in me to fill the position. I would like to work to see all trade associations work During the AASP National Board’s more closely together and provide semi-annual meeting in Las Vegas more benefits to members.” during the SEMA show, AASP Elder stated, “I look forward to elected its executive board. being a part of the board and The executive board inworking to make a difference cluded well-known industry for our member shops throughprofessionals from around the out the country.” country. AASP/MA President Adams shared, “I am honMolly Brodeur was elected as ored to be elected the new secretary/treasurer, and Bob president of AASP. I look Pulverenti, executive director forward to working with the of the Independent Garage board and their members to Owners of North Carolina provide them with my 30(IGONC), will serve as execplus years of business experiutive director chair of the naence in the automotive repair tional organization. industry. One of my main The role of vice president AASP National elected its new executive board during SEMA goals is to facilitate a dialogue will be filled by AASP/NJ’s in Las Vegas. (l to r) Bill Adams, Bob Pulverenti, Tom with our affiliates across the Tom Elder, and Bill Adams Elder, Molly Brodeur. Credit: Thomas Greco Publishing country to see what works of New York will serve as and what doesn’t as to how president of the board. Brodeur said, “I am honored their associations relate to individAASP National’s administrator, Judell Anderson, CAE, shared, to serve as an executive board ual members. Along with that, I “The new executive committee is member of AASP National. My would like to expand the membermade up of stellar individuals with goal is to support the board as we ship from areas around the country extensive experience and a commit- provide information, educational that currently do not have represenment to advancing the industry. I opportunities and resources to our tation. The more ideas that we can bring to the table, the more of a posam eager to work with them to affiliates.” Pulverenti shared, “I am thrilled itive impact we can have to grow strengthen AASP affiliates’ capacity to better serve the auto service and that the members of the AASP Na- business.” by Chasidy Rae Sisk

The Right Parts. A Perfect Fit.

collision repair shops that we represent.” The newly appointed executive board members shared their reactions to being elected as well as their goals.

Tariff Rate Increase Put on Pause Amid New Discussions by Jordan Scott, glassBYTEs.com

The United States will not raise the rate of tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese products to 25 percent on Jan. 1, 2019, as previously planned, according to a statement from the White House.

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Tariffs will remain at the current 10 percent rate imposed on Sept. 24, 2018, for at least another 90 days. The update came after a sideline meeting between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the G20 Summit over the weekend of Dec. 1–2 in Buenos Aires. President Trump called the meeting “highly successful.” In return for the halt on a tariff rate increase, President Xi has agreed to purchase a yet-to-be-decided-upon, “very substantial”

amount of products from the U.S. According to the White House statement, the purchases will “reduce the trade imbalance between our two countries.” The two leaders agreed to begin negotiations on forced technology transfers, intellectual property protections, non-tariff barriers, cyber intrusions and cyber theft. President Trump cited forced technology transfers and a lack of intellectual property protections as reasons for the tariffs. Both parties agreed to try to complete the negotiations within the next 90 days, otherwise the 10 percent tariffs will be increased to 25 percent, according to the White House. Auto glass-related materials on the list of products subject to the tariff include: • • • •

Various float glass products Glass mirrors Glass frit Laminated safety glass

We thank glassBYTEs.com for reprint permission.

autobodynews.com / JANUARY 2019 AUTOBODY NEWS



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Profile for Autobody News

January 2019 Midwest Edition  

January 2019 Midwest Edition