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THE NEW WHMIS Are you ready for the changes?

Full report on the CSN conference.

INSIDE CHINA We lift the curtain on China’s burgeoning collision industry.



The owner of Brent Gerrits Collision & Refinishing makes sure rural issues are on the table in Nova Scotia. PLUS The future of self-drivers,

AkzoNobel’s Automatchic Vision takes digital colour matching to a new level, Ontario updates its training and much, much more!!! Volume 15, Number 6 l December 2016




Canada Post Canadian Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement No. 40841632   l  86 John Street, Thornhill, ON L3T 1Y2



ON THE COVER 37  COUNTRY LIFE Brent Gerrits of Brent Gerrits Collision & Refinishing gives rural shops a voice. Volume 15, Issue 6, December 2016

FEATURES 40  EXECUTIVE VISION Debbie Day and Jack Rozint of Mitchell on parts procurement and trends. 43 READY FOR WHMIS? Changes are coming to the how Canada uses WHMIS symbols. 60 DIGITAL EVOLUTION Looking at AkzoNobel’s Automatchic colour matching tool. 62  FINANCIAL REPORT The latest news and reports from the industry’s biggest companies.


2016 SEMA Show brings the heat to Las Vegas with a surplus of cool. Check out our coverage starting on page 51!

66 REPORT ON TRAINING Ontario’s new curriculum includes PDR, electronics and more. 66  SELF-DRIVING UPDATE Autonomous cars by 2021? Not so fast, say experts.




CSN Collision Centres drives performance at annual conference.


China’s collision industry may see fewer car owners, but even more cars on the road.

ON THE COVER: Brent Gerrits of Brent Gerrits Collision & Refinishing. PHOTOGRAPHY BY RICK PENNEY.


Canada’s collision repair information resource. New articles and top news stories daily. Visit

06  PUBLISHER’S PAGE  by Darryl Simmons People business. 31  WHO’S DRIVING?  by Jay Perry The uncoachable. 32  PRAIRIE VIEW  by Chelsea Stebner Greener pastures. 34 TRAINING  by Andrew Shepherd Key to performance. 80 RECYCLING  by David Gold Town hall. 82  INDUSTRY INSIGHT by Jeff Sanford New tricks.

HAVE YOUR SAY. We welcome your comments on anything you see in Collision Repair magazine. Send your feedback to



CONFERENCEMAGIC Why you should attend every one.


By Darryl Simmons


he collision repair industry loves its conferences. More unites us in our markets than divides us, so it’s no surprise that people would have a lot to talk about. Conferences are an important meeting of the minds where you get a glimpse into ever y aspect of what we do. They provide a golden opportunity for people of every interest in the industry to come together, share and grow. S ome people like to focus on the numbers, because collision repair can be a challenging numbers game, and some

necessarily have to have different interests. Some live by elbow-grease, others by keyboards, but everyone contributes. Of course, the most important events at any conference are the coffee breaks. Not to undermine all the wonderful panels, seminars and vendor exhibits, but if you want to know the real collision repair industry, then you want to know the people. Get industry experts in the same room talking, and that’s where you’ll hear the kernels of the ideas of next year’s advances. The people involved might be focused on numbers, technology, or


people enjoy that. Other people like to focus on innovation—bringing the latest and greatest technological developments to bear on our industry. This is an industry that provides opportunity for invention. Other people focus on a car as art, a big metal and plastic and electronic work canvas. And some are born problem solvers—always searching for new and more effective ways to get those four wheels back on the road. There’s room for all these kinds of people in the collision repair industry. Collision repair is something like a puzzle, and it takes a lot of clues to solve it. Running the numbers, paint-matching, part replacement—even finding the parts —and just coordinating the flow of traffic through the shop, it’s all one complex puzzle to solve. It takes a lot of hard working, practical but creative people to bring this all together, and these people


just their love of putting something back together that was once broken, but any which way you look at it, the meeting of the minds is what gets things done. That’s the real innovation in the industry, and the real gift of conferences, and it happens over coffee. So, when next you’re at an industry conference, remember: take it all in. The people around you are all passionate, hard working and creative people, no matter what their area of interest is. All you have to do is listen, get people talking, and the magic will happen. That’s what a conference is all about.


EDITORIAL DIRECTOR MIKE DAVEY (905) 549-0454 ASSISTANT EDITOR MIKE PICKFORD (905) 370-0101 CREATIVE DEPARTMENT MICHELLE MILLER (905) 370-0101 STAFF WRITER JEFF SANFORD VP INDUSTRY RELATIONS & ADVERTISING GLORIA MANN (647) 998-5677 MANAGING DIRECTOR IMM/DIRECTOR BUSINESS SOLUTIONS & MARKETING ELLEN SMITH (416) 312-7446 CONTRIBUTORS DAVID GOLD, JAY PERRY, BARETT POLEY, ANDREW SHEPHERD, CHELSEA STEBNER, ALEXANDRIA TOLFA. SUBSCRIPTION One-year $39.95 / Two-year $64.99 Collision Repair™ magazine is published bi-monthly, and is dedicated to serving the business interests of the collision repair industry. It is published by Media Matters Inc. Material in Collision Repair™ magazine may not be reproduced in any form without written consent from the publisher. The publisher reserves the right to refuse any advertising and disclaims all responsibilities for claims or statements made by its advertisers or independent columnists. All facts, opinions, statements appearing in this publication are those of the writers and editors themselves, and are in no way to be construed as statements, positions or endorsements by the publisher. PRINTED IN CANADA ISSN 1707-6072 CANADA POST CANADIAN PUBLICATIONS MAIL SALES PRODUCT AGREEMENT No. 40841632 RETURN POSTAGE GUARANTEED Send change of address notices and undeliverable copies to: 455 Gilmour St Peterborough, ON K9H 2J8

We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Collision Repair magazine is published by Media Matters Inc., publishers of:


PEOPLE ON THE MOVE Fix Auto has announced two team members will now have new positions within the organization. Andy Neufeld will serve as Director of Operations for Fix Auto Ontario and Trina Irwin will move into the newly created role of Specialized Andy Neufeld Services Coordinator. Neufeld was formerly Fix Auto’s Strategic Partner Developer in Ontario before accepting the new position. He has spent his entire career in the collision industry, from technician through to insurance image desk professional, on a trajectory that has now placed him in a leadership role, guiding the efforts of the company’s Strategic Partner Developers in Ontario. Tr ina Ir win has b e en with Fix Auto for several years, most recently Trina Irwin. managing the company’s Head Office Hail Program. In her new role, Irwin will be responsible for reviewing estimates for insurance partners, auditing and expediting the approval process. Irwin will report to Tony DeSantis, Vice President of Sales for Fix Auto Canada. For more info, please visit PPG Canada has named Christie Alexander to the position o f Te r r i t o r y M a n a g e r for British Columbia. Norm Angrove, Director, Refinish Canada, made the Christie announcement. In this role, Alexander. Alexander will serve as PPG representative to the company’s automotive refinish distributors throughout the province. Alexander joined PPG Canada in August of this year. She has extensive experience in the refinish business, including as a territory manager for several auto refinish-related manufacturers. “We are ver y pleased that Alexander has joined us,” said Angrove. “She brings with her a wealth of industry knowledge, an understanding of our distributors’ requirements and a positive attitude. We welcome her and know she’ll make a fine addition to the PPG team.” For m ore i n for m at i on , pl e a s e v i s it 8  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

Fix Auto World has named Terry Feehan to the position of Head of Business for Fix Auto Australia. Feehan was previously the General Manager of SAPE Group, an Australian paint, body and equipment distributor. Feehan is responsible of overseeing Fix Auto’s Australian operations, growing the organization’s team, supporting the network and building relationships with suppliers to help Terry Feehan establish Fix Auto as a player in the Australian market. “I am ver y excited about joining Fix Au t o. T h e F i x Au t o m o d e l b e n e f i t s independent repairers who want to grow and create opportunity by joining their p e e rs i n a re c o g n i z e d, re sp e c te d and successful national repairer group,” said Feehan. “It is my goal and that of my Australian team to work with repairers, suppliers and work providers to build Fix Auto Australia into a network based on honesty, integrity and full focus on the customer.” Australasian Paint & Panel reports that SAPE Group CEO Ray McMartin has thanked Feehan for his contribution to the business over the years. “Earlier this year Terry felt that he needed a new challenge and with our knowledge the opportunity arose to take on this new position with Fix Auto,” said McMartin, as reported by Australasian Paint & Panel. “I know one thing for certain and that is if anyone can put Fix Auto together in Australia, Terry Feehan can.” Fix Auto has previously announced that Steve Taylor will fill the role of National Operations Manager for Fix Auto Australia. “Terry is a seasoned industry professional and his extensive experience will be key in ensuring our growth and cementing our position as leading collision repair network in Australia,” Steve Leal, President and CEO of Fix Auto World. Leal is also the President and CEO of Fix Auto’s Canadian operations. Please visit fixauto. com for more information.


Craftsman Collision makes a dent in hunger Craftsman Collision and Save-On-Foods teamed up with The Salvation Army to do what they could to ensure no families went hungry this fall. The organizations held a food drive on Saturday, October 1. Craftsman Collision pledged to match every item donated. For every can donated by a participating customer, two cans of soup made it onto a shelf at local Salvation Army Family Services units. A statement says the Salvation Army has seen an increase in demand in every British Columbia community this year, as more families have come to rely on their services to put food on the table. Many food banks throughout the province have had trouble stocking the shelves, with fewer businesses and individuals being able to part with food donations in these difficult economic times. Through the efforts of Craftsman Collision employees on a rainy Saturday, they managed to raise $16,913 worth of food and cash, and the Salvation Army will receive a total donation of $33,826. The food and monies raised will help support local meal and food hamper programs for the Salvation Army. “We are ecstatic that we hit our goal of a quarter of a million dollars,” says Stacey Cook, Marketing Manager for Craftsman

Craftsman Collision staffers and ‘Sally Ann’ at one of the Food Drive locations. Craftsman Collision has made a total donation of over $33,000 to the Salvation Army this year.

Collision. “Since 2009, Craftsman Collision has raised $251,102.44 in food and cash for the Salvation Army. Giving back has always been an integral part of the culture at Craftsman Collision. Our fundraiser is a chance for us to come together as a company and participate in fun, team building activities, while supporting a very worthy cause.” Upon entering participating locations, customers received a shopping list of ideal non-perishable food items to shop for and donate. While all food

donations were needed, some items were in particuarly short supply this year, including canned fruit and vegetables, canned meat, mac and cheese, peant butter, rice, Hamburger Helper, cereal, diapers, pasta, toilet paper, instant noodels, canned baked beans, pasta and tomato sauce and beans. Craftsman Collision would like to extend special thanks to Save-On-Foods for the company’s ongoing community partnership and to all the volunteers that helped make the day such a success.

CSN-OpenRoad Richmond holds Industry Night Close contact with the OEMs is more important than ever before. An event at CSN-OpenRoad Richmond Autobody brought together stakeholders from every segment of the collision industry to learn about OEM certification and training programs as well as the very latest repair techniques. Representatives from Porsche, BMW/ Mini, Acura/Honda, Lexus/Toyota and Volkswagen/Audi were all on hand at the event, with simulations demonstrating cutting edge diagnostics scanning, electronics calibration and repair procedures for advanced materials. The crowd showed a cross-section of the

collision repair industry, including students from collision repair and refinishing programs at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) and Vancouver Community College (VCC). Students had the chance to mingle with OEM experts, collision educators and insurance, business and government professionals. Door prizes and an impressive display of exotic cars helped to round out the evening. The following sponsors helped to make the event possible: CSN Collision Centres, OpenRoad Honda, OpenRoad Toyota, the BCIT’s School of Transportation (Motive Power) and Audio Visual Services departments, AutoHouse Technologies,

At the Industry Night event hosted by CSN-OpenRoad Richmond Auto Body.

BASF Canada, 3M, White & Peters, Audi Boundary, OpenRoad Lexus, Porsche Langley, and the BMW Store. Catering was provided by Cocktails & Canapés catering + events.




CARSTAR Okotoks steps up to help local woman in need One Alberta resident had the opportunity to witness first hand just how generous the Canadian collision repair industry can be. The unfortunate side-victim of an incident involving the Calgary Police Service earlier this year, a beleaguered Ana Sosa was left literally picking up the pieces after her 2005 Jeep Patriot was damaged during a fatal shooting. On the evening of July 15, police responded to a call from a local resident indicating there were four people prowling vehicles in a crowded parking garage. After blocking the exits of the lot, police began searching the building, eventually coming across the four suspects inside a vehicle. The driver of the vehicle made several attempts to run down officers on the scene before police fired shots at the stolen vehicle. One man was killed in the incident, while three others were arrested. Shortly after the parking garage re-opened to residents, Sosa was one of many to discover her vehicle had been severely damaged during the episode. With dents and scratches covering most of the lower parts of the front, back and right side of the vehicle, Sosa found herself in a sticky predicament when she learned her basic liability insurance package would not cover the costs of a repair. Enter Mark Kharfan and his team at CARSTAR Okotoks. When they first caught wind of Sosa’s story following contact with a local radio DJ, they knew right away that they wanted to do whatever they could to help a community member in need. “We reached out to Ana pretty much right away after we heard about what happened,” said Andrew Northrup, Operations Director at CARSTAR Okotoks. “Whenever you park your car at home, you don’t expect to come back out later and find it wrecked. We didn’t have to think too hard about deciding to help.” It wasn’t all plain sailing from there though, with Northrup telling Collision Repair magazine that Sosa thought he was playing an elaborate joke at first. “She couldn’t believe it when I told her we wanted to help out, her reaction was definitely one of amazement,” Northrup said. “Once she realized we were serious, she was extremely thankful and incredibly gracious. She was surprised, especially in today’s day and age, that there are still 12  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

CARSTAR Okotoks’ Director of Operations Andrew Northrup (left) is pictured alongside his colleague Curtis Williams (right) as they officially hand Ana Sosa’s (middle) fully-repaired 2005 Jeep Patriot back over.

organizations out there that help out their neighbours and their community members like this.” The word ‘help’ may be putting it lightly. The team at CARSTAR Okotoks donated all the time, labour, materials and parts towards the restoration with some donations also coming in from All-in-One Auto Parts, LKQ Canada and Varsity Chrysler Dodge Jeep. In the end, they had done almost $6,000 worth of work to restore Sosa’s Jeep back to working condition. “We ended up completely redoing the front, rear and right side of the vehicle. That included replacing doors, bumpers, fender flares, the whole lot,” Northrup said. “The car was pretty much destroyed when it came over to us. If it had been an insurance claim, there’s no doubt it would have been a total loss.” While there may be some people questioning why the Okotoks-based shop would step in to cover the costs of the repair, Northrup says it’s all down to the community-first mentality Kharfan has instilled in his business and encouraged amongst his employees. “If there’s one thing that Mark has always pushed and encouraged it’s making sure we’re good, active members of our community. That’s something he promotes within the Kharfan Group as a whole,” said Northrup, noting the Okotoks facility is one of seven in the group. “Ana found herself in a tough spot and really didn’t have a whole lot of places she could turn to for support. It makes me proud that we were able to step in and say ‘yes, we will help you out’.”


Saskatchewan significantly toughens drinking and driving laws The government of Saskatchewan has recently announced tougher changes to impaired driving laws. The changes go into effect on January 1, 2017. Judgment is one of the first things you lose when you consume alcohol and other impairing drugs, so Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) is encouraging people to leave their vehicles at home before they go out for beverages. That way, there’s no choice but to get a safe ride home after having a few drinks. “People have good intentions, thinking ‘I’ll only have a drink or two then come home,’” said Earl Cameron, Executive Vice-President of the Auto Fund. “But alcohol impairs your judgment and can lead to poor decisions. You may be a very responsible person, who makes sound decisions when sober. You know it’s wrong to drink and drive, and are certain you would never do it. But throw alcohol into the mix, and that sound judgment isn’t so sound any more. That’s why planning ahead is so important. Leaving your vehicle

at home and finding an alternate way to an event decreases the temptation to drive home under the influence.” In 2015, 53 people were killed and 578 more were injured in impaired driving crashes in Saskatchewan. “There have been too many impaired driving tragedies in our province,” said Cameron. “These collisions are needless, unacceptable and 100 percent preventable. Think of the families of those whose lives have been lost, and don’t risk causing another family that same pain. Leave your car at home and eliminate the risk completely.” Saskatchewan has the highest rate per capita of impaired driving fatalities in Canada. “Drinking and driving has taken far too many lives in this province and people need to get the message that it is never acceptable, period,” Minister responsible for Saskatchewan Government Insurance Joe Hargrave said. “Our government is committed to reducing the number


Earl Cameron of SGI.

of lives lost and people injured due to impaired driving.” Amendments to the Traffic Safety Act include adding a three-day vehicle seizure for experienced drivers who are charged for the first time with having a blood alcohol content (BAC) over .04; applying zero tolerance for drugs and alcohol to drivers 21 and under and strengthening ignition interlock laws to be the most effective in Canada, by extending mandatory ignition interlock to drivers who register a BAC over .16 or refuse to provide a breath sample.


Manitoba road fatalities already in excess of 2015 total By the end of October, Manitoba road fatalities had already reached the disturbing total of 85, compared to 78 for all of 2015. “Today we’re putting out an urgent call of road safety action to Manitoba motorists,” Crown Services’ Minister Ron Schuler said. “The increase in road fatalities is disturbing. We must remember that this is much more than just a number but represents mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, friends, co-

workers, and best friends. Too often road fatalities are associated with high-risk driving behaviour, behaviours which can be changed.” Of the 85 fatalities this year, 38 percent (32) are related to impaired driving while speed accounted for nearly 20 percent (16). Another 11 Manitobans were killed due to non seatbelt use. Almost 70 percent of all the fatalities were male, and nearly 25 percent were under 25 years old.

Ward Keith of MPI

“This increase in road fatalities is extremely concerning and reinforces the vital role that all road safety partners, including our law enforcement officials, must continue to play in keeping our roads safe,” Attorney General and Justice Minister Heather Stefanson said. Manitoba’s public auto insurer will continue its proactive approach to education and awareness. “Manitoba Public Insurance continues to work with our police partners and road safety stakeholders such as MADD Canada to reinforce the importance of road safety and the need to change highrisk driving behaviour,” said Ward Keith, Vice President of Business Development & Communications and Chief Product Officer, Manitoba Public Insurance. “Despite overall downward trending in fatal collisions in Manitoba over the last two decades, the increase in road fatalities recorded in 2016 confirms that much work still needs to be done. Every motorist in Manitoba can take action today by personally committing to keeping our roads safe to travel.” Police agencies are equally concerned about the fatality counts this year. “Far too many people are being killed on Manitoba’s highways and the impact is felt province wide,” said Insp. Ed Morleand, Officer In Charge of D-Division Traffic Services. “The RCMP are committed to an heightened presence on our roads and solid enforcement against those who break the law.” “No one should suffer the tragedy of losing someone to an impaired or speeding driver,” said Staff Sergeant Rob Riffel, Winnipeg Police Service. “These behaviours are choices, bad ones. Driving impaired or speeding puts drivers, passengers and pedestrians at risk, and every year far too many Manitobans lose their lives to this selfish behaviour.” 16  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM


Assured Automotive opens new facility in Ottawa

Assured Automotive Orleans South is the latest facility to open as part of the Assured Automotive chain. The collision centre is located in Ottawa, Ontario.

Assured Automotive has opened its newest collision repair facility, operating as Assured Orleans South in Ottawa, Ontario. The 13,500 sq. ft facility is a purposebuilt Greenfield collision centre situated in Orleans, a suburb of Ottawa. Assured Automotive designed and built the ultramodern facility on a one-acre parcel of land in Orleans, one of the fastest growing communities in Ottawa. A statement from Assured Automotive says the facility is professionally outfitted with the latest and greatest in equipment, including Car-O-Liner “Speed” Light Repair Systems in all collision repair bays, Invertaspot and Invertapuls Welders, Miracle Repair Systems for aluminum and steel and a dedicated aluminum repair area. The facility also boasts a dedicated

“Plastic Bay” area equipped with the Revo Rapid System. The facility utilizes two Ultra Downdraft Paint Spray Booths, one of which is also equipped with the Revo Speed Paint Curing System. “We are very excited with regards to our newest facility in Ottawa,” said Tony Canade, President of Assured Automotive. “Our new state-of-the-art facility is located in an area of Ottawa that is experiencing considerable population growth and will offer a convenient, comfortable and modern collision repair facility to our insurance partners, dealer partners and customers alike.” Assured Automotive operates nine facilities in Ottawa and a total of 62 facilities in Ontario. For more information, please visit

Prochilo Brothers Auto Collision helps raise $200,000 for SickKids

At the SickKids Breakfast of Champions. From left: Claudia Ieraci, Domenic Ieraci, Domenic Prochilo and Paul Prochilo. Executives from the repair organization joined a who’s who of Canadian social and business leaders, from Olympic gold medalists to the Canadian heads of companies like Facebook and Instagram, for the annual fundraising get together. Prochilo Brothers helped raise approximately $200,000 for the Child-Bright Network, an initiative run by SickKids Hospital and aimed at preventing brain-based developmental disabilities in children.



Carrossier ProColor partners with Operation Red Nose Carrossier ProColor has announced a three-year partnership with Operation Red Nose, a popular reference for designated driver services during the holiday season. Operation Red Nose was created in September 1984 by Jean-Marie De Koninck. The non-profit organization’s mission is to promote the adoption of responsible behaviour in all impaired situations by offering an accessible and confidential designated driver service provided by and for the community. Operation Red Nose doesn’t encourage or condemn alcohol consumption. Instead, the organization aims for a more Mary Jayn de Villers and Melissa Murphy of Carrossier ProColor show their support for Operation Red Nose. preventive approach for its campaign to raise Carrossier ProColor has recently announced it has entered into partnership with the organization to discourage awareness about the importance of opting for impaired driving. responsible driving. In support of the organization, Carrossier In addition to its financial contribution, Carrossier ProColor ProColor will provide financial support to Operation Red Nose will conduct its own mobilization campaign, entitled “Carrossier to contribute to the success of its awareness campaigns, including ProColor Wants Time Off for Christmas.” The campaign will a sponsorship of $5,000 in prizes that will be drawn among be aimed at the network’s collision centres to solicit their customers who respond to the satisfaction survey following the participation as volunteers with their Operation Red Nose use of the designated driver service. local headquarters. “We are delighted to offer our support to Operation Red Nose,” Two official designated driver service evenings have already said Mary Jayn de Villers, Director of Communications and been scheduled: November 25, in Montreal, and December 2, in Marketing at Carrossier ProColor. “As this year marks our 15th Quebec City. anniversary, we were looking for a unique opportunity to stand out “With 158 collision centres across the province, we are well as a socially responsible organization. A partnership with Operation positioned to do our part in supporting Operation Red Nose’s Red Nose was a perfect fit for our mission by enabling us to bring our mission to allow everyone, ourselves included, to take full support to the communities we serve across the province.” advantage of the holiday season,” said de Villers.

Fix Auto expands with Fix Auto St-Augustin Fix Auto has announced the addition of Fix Auto St-Augustin to the network. Fix Auto St-Augustin is owned and operated by Guy and Gilles Vallières. “Our shop’s philosophy is first and foremost based on a family spirit,” says Guy. “This is what pushed us to go with Fix Auto in the first place; it’s a well-known

and established brand, but that also takes the time to build business relations around a family spirit.” The Vallières have been in business for more than 23 years, while having almost 40 years of experience in the industry. “Guy and Gilles Vallières are extremely passionate entrepreneurs who will bring

a valuable expertise to the Fix Auto network,” says Michel Bourgeois, General Manager of Fix Auto Quebec. “Having Fix Auto St-Augustin as a partner in our evergrowing network makes us very proud. We wish them good luck in this new chapter.” For more information, please visit



CSN-Chapman Autobody expands with new location By Ryan Perks

Kelvin Campbell has officially opened a second, state-of-the-art location in the Halifax suburb of Bedford. Campbell is the owner and operator of CSN-Chapman Autobody, located in Halifax’s North End. The new shop is CSN-Chapman Autobody West-Bedford. Campbell, who first purchased Chapman Autobody in 1994, has been working out of his current shop, at 2500 Agricola St., since 2001. But after nearly 15 successful years at that location—a period in which the shop was able to triple its yearly business—Campbell decided it was time to expand beyond his 8,000 sq. ft. shop. As he explains it, his team of 18 staff had started to run out of room a few years ago, and this was hemming in business. “Basically, we’d hit the ceiling at $4.5 million a year—and that was in a $3 million-a-year shop,” he says. And under such constraints, Campbell was having to place his customers on a waiting list of 4 to 6 weeks—something no business person enjoys doing. When Campbell decided it was time for an expansion, he set his sights on the suburb of Bedford, about a 15-minute drive from the Agricola St. space. But while there were many upsides to Bedford—the community is located in the dead centre of the Halifax Regional Municipality, Campbell points out, and is considered the fastest-growing part of the greater HRM—getting the proper permits in order wasn’t easy. The challenge is a familiar one for many shop owners. The community wasn’t zoned for commercial properties, which meant the business had to apply for the relevant by-law amendments. This can be quite the headache. “We had to hire legal counsel and a property developer,” Campbell explains, “just to navigate the paperwork.” The process was time-consuming; though he’d put an offer on the property back in June 2015, it wasn’t until the following summer that everything came together, and Campbell was able to commence work on the design and construction phase of his exciting new endeavor. He hired a design firm to realize his vision of a more efficient commercial space, and after three weeks of drafting, the builders were able to get to work. This was the exciting part. Expanding 20  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

A view of the new facility, shortly before completion.

to a new and bigger location—11,000 sq. ft. bigger than the original shop—allowed Campbell to realize some of his longheld dreams when it came to floor plans. Campbell drew particular inspiration from a trip he took to Europe in 2012, with his colleagues from the Collision Performance Group, a body of other shop owners and industry professionals from Canada and the US. The group toured shops in various countries, which allowed Campbell to put together a wish list of design features. Campbell says the new facility allows for increased freedom of movement and the capacity to take on more ambitious jobs. And this is a big part of his vision for the Bedford shop. “The idea is that the new shop will be a heavy-hit centre,” Campbell explains, “while the original location will be more of a fast-track shop.” He’s adamant, though, about one thing—they will not discriminate: if you live on the Bedford side of town, they’re happy to repair lighter collision work at the new shop, too. It’s about customer convenience, after all. “I don’t like to count my chickens before they hatch,” he says. But he notes that the Agricola location was having to turn down 50 to 60 repairs a month due to lack of space. “The hope is that the new shop will recover this business, with room to expand further. “Ultimately, the new shop could do 200 repairs a month easily,” Campbell says. At any rate, Campbell, who plans on moving six veteran technicians from the Agricola location, in addition to the six other techs he’s recently hired for the Bedford expansion, is ready for whatever comes his way.


Unlocking information: Audatex Canada officially launches AudaVIN for Shops Audatex Canada has officially launched AudaVIN for Shops, the company’s latest tool for the collision repair industry. There’s a lot of information contained in that string of 17 digits, but Audatex Canada says the last six digits contain a wealth of useful data that hasn’t been accessible to the repair community. Jessica Shields is Senior Manager, Product Marketing for Audatex Canada. She says using the new tool, collision shops can benefit from the same efficiencies and savings that insurers have realized through AudaVIN. “Seconds after punching in the VIN, estimators and appraisers get access to vehicle-specific information that is critical for determining accurate repair costs or for declaring the vehicle a total loss,” says Shields. “AudaVIN presents you with everything the OEM has recorded for that vehicle, including standard equipment, factory options, and engine and transmission data. Having this information upfront will greatly speed up the process.” AudaVIN is fully integrated with the estimating and total loss valuation systems produced by Audatex. Shields says AudaVIN can drive greater accuracy in estimating by providing the correct vehicle parts and option details at the very beginning of the process, all from within the estimating system. “It essentially takes all the guesswork out of the process and reduces manual inspection time,” says Shields. “Our results show that using AudaVIN can save up to seven minutes per vehicle inspection. That adds up to a lot of time saved in a year and it will have additional benefits downstream in the process.” Michel Caron is Vice President, Sales Dealer Fixed Ops and Collision Repair Solutions for Audatex Canada. He notes that

while the first 11 digits of VINs reveal many details such as such as country of production, manufacturer, year, and model, the last six digits also provide a wealth of information. “Until now, no VIN decoder on the market could make sense of the most valuable characters of the VIN: the last six digits,” says Caron. “Those last six digits are really the vehicle’s DNA. They reveal the factory options fitted onto the vehicle during production. These include options such as trim, traction control, blind spot sensors, rear-view cameras and parallel-park assist. But that’s really just the beginning.” Caron points out that increasing efficiency during the initial appraisal will inevitably have a positive impact on the collision repair facility’s total efficiency. “Body shops often require supplements as they are performing repairs due to the appraiser having missed damaged items on the original inspection. If the last six digits of the VIN were decoded at the onset, collision repair shops would have immediate and accurate identification of the vehicle parts that require repair,” says Caron. “This would lead to fewer supplements and enable the body shop to experience a higher throughput—and more revenue. By helping to ensure accurate claims, the body shop can be confident to deliver the vehicle within the original expected timeframe.” Audatex Canada provides comprehensive training and support for AudaVIN, including an AudaVin Quick Reference Guide, available through the company’s Online Training Center, and a “Show Me” video available from the vehicle information page in the Audatex Estimating/Autosource application. For more information, please visit

Alex Hunter to serve as keynote presenter at IBIS 2017 Anticipation is already building for the 2017 IBIS Global Summit with the announcement that Alex Hunter will serve as one of the keynote speakers. Alex Hunter is a branding and customer experience expert who was part of the founding team of award-winning US airline Virgin America. He then joined Virgin Group as the global head of online, overseeing the company’s global digital strategy, including Sir Richard Branson’s personal digital strategy. IBIS 2017 will bring together collision repair industry stakeholders from across the globe. The event will take place at the Meliá Castilla hotel in Madrid, Spain, on June 12 to 14. Collision Repair magazine is the exclusive Canadian Media Partner for IBIS 2017. With the ability to talk authoritatively on branding, customer loyalty, reputation, marketing and these topics’ intersection with the digital world, Hunter will provide the collision repair industry with an external viewpoint of how to tackle the challenges that lay ahead. The theme for 2017’s Global Summit is ‘The Currency of Trust’, and Hunter’s knowledge of brands’ relationships with customers and his proven track record of success will emphasise the importance of trust and a collaborative approach. The world class content at the IBIS Global Summit consistently receives outstanding ratings in delegate feedback, ensuring the 22  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

Alex Hunter, former global head of online for Virgin Group, will serve as a keynote presenter at IBIS 2017.

conference maintains its status as the world’s leading collision repair event. The 2017 incarnation of the Global Summit is no different, and Hunter is the first of many high profile presentations to be announced. For more information or to book, please contact Nicola Keady via email to


Mitchell signs partnership agreement with AI company Tractable Can computers be programmed to see what a human sees? Alex Dalyac says they can. Dalyac is the CEO of Tractable, a UKbased company that has recently signed a partnership agreement with Mitchell International. Tractable specializes in the development of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions capable of automating manual tasks. Mitchell has announced it will integrate Tractable’s solutions within its WorkCenter Automobile Physical Damage platform. WorkCenter is a modular solution produced by Mitchell for the insurance sector. According to a press release, this will enable customers to make better decisions and accelerate the vehicle repair and claims management processes. “Our industry is ready to adopt intelligent solutions leveraging machine learning technologies. There are many activities we believe can be improved using these capabilities and we are thrilled to partner with Tractable to bring innovative solutions forward,” says Debbie Day, Executive Vice President of Mitchell International. Broadly speaking, the idea here is to have intelligent software take some of the load off insurance claims professionals by simplifying and accelerating repetitive tasks. In turn, this would allow the human beings involved in the process to focus on activities in the claims process that require more oversight, intelligence and experience.

The software isn’t intended to provide a full estimate, but to determine in a broad sense what level of repair is needed, or if the vehicle should be considered a total loss. Speeding up this process should benefit both insurers and repairers. “Our technology is going to change the way that auto claims are managed in the future. We have trained computers to see exactly what humans see, so that vehicle damage can be assessed within seconds

and consistent decisions made. Artificial intelligence will make the process quicker, more cost effective and more efficient,” said Alex Dalyac, CEO of Tractable. “We are excited to partner with Mitchell as we believe their long history and marketleading expertise, combined with their modern cloud-based solutions, will enable us to create unique opportunities that deliver the benefits of artificial intelligence to the insurance claims sector.”

Most Influential Women nominations now open Nominations for the prestigious Most Influential Women (MIW) Awards are now officially open. Nominations close on December 30, 2016. The winners will be recognized at a gala held during the 2017 Women’s Industry Network (WIN) Educational Conference held May 8 to 10, 2017 at the Westin Denver Downtown in Denver, Colorado. Nominations of women working in any segment of the collision repair industry across Canada and the US are welcomed. WIN membership is not a requirement for nomination. WIN has contracted a thirdparty to review all nominations. For more information, please visit DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  23


Mopar launches ‘Right to Request’ campaign Mopar is targeting consumers with a new campaign designed to promote OEM parts in collision repair. The campaign focuses on the consumer’s “Right to Request” OEM collision parts. According to a statement from Mopar, the campaign will include a new informational ad that details the rights of owners to ask for OEM parts for collision repairs. The “Right to Request” ad will be featured on the brand’s YouTube page, as well as on its official website at collision. Mopar is also distributing a collision repair guidebook that the company says will showcase the advantages of using OEM Mopar collision products. “Consumers have the freedom to choose, and that includes the freedom to insist on O.E. Mopar collision parts to protect their investment in their vehicles,” said Ross McGinnis, Vice President – Parts Sales and Field Operations, Mopar. “Owners have the right to ask for O.E. parts created by the same engineers who designed and built their vehicles in order to protect their vehicles and the people riding in them.” A statement from Mopar says the case for insisting on OEM parts is even more critical considering the complex technology and safety systems integrated into the manufacture of today’s modern vehicles For more information, please visit

Mopar has launched a new campaign targeting consumers and asking them to request OEM parts be used in repairs to their vehicles.

Co-Auto Co-Operative to go nationwide Co-Auto Co-Operative has announced it will deliver a national “one-stop shop” service for dealers anywhere in Canada. The Ontario-based company will be changing its name to “Consolidated Dealers Co-Op.” The company says dealerships across Canada are consolidating and searching for new economies of scale. “Regardless of region, our goal is to offer the same great deals and the same great service to dealers across the country. A growing number of our clients have already been served by us, outside of Ontario, so this move to nationalize officially is essentially a logical brand evolution,” according to an official statement. The decision came following a meeting held in September 2016 where a legal name change was approved. The new national brand was launched on November 1. Tom Langton, President and CEO of Consolidated Dealers Co-Op. “We are very proud and excited to announce that we have become the first national auto dealer buying group to serve the entire Canadian market. Auto dealers across the country when surveyed, clearly indicated their need for simplicity when selecting a buying group,” said Tom Langton, President and CEO of Consolidated Dealers Co-Op. A statement from the company says great member growth is expected, along with new products and services that will provide additional savings and profits in the coming months and years. For more information, please visit 24  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM


In Memoriam: Cal Sanders It is with great regret that that we must report the passing of Cal Sanders. Sanders was the founder of U-POL USA. However, many in the industry knew Sanders personally from his years working on numerous committees and industry programs to help build a better industry for all of us. His son, Michael, is currently Vice President of North America for U-POL. He shared the following statement following the 2016 SEMA Show. “Cal loved this industry and he spent the last 40 years working hard to build up

Zubair ‘Zuby’ Siddiqui, Cal’s friend, and Michael Sanders, Cal’s son at the 2016 SEMA Show.

businesses and make the industry better. As I cleaned out his things in his house, I found old plaques from when he was involved with different committees and different industry programs. Over the past three weeks I have received calls, emails, texts and this week had many people stop by the booth to pay their respects to Cal. Every single one of them was remembering a time they had shared with Cal. Some were recent but most were 20-plus years ago. Each of the people paying their respects told a story that was ‘classic’ Cal. Whether it was how he taught them how to sell, encouraged them to make the right decision, mentored them in this business or just when Cal made them laugh hysterically. It is very touching to know that Cal had such an impact on people’s lives, just as he did for my sister and myself. I was lucky to have worked with him over the last 13 years and can recall the same memories of Cal as all the people who have reached out. He was a great father, great mentor and business partner and he will be missed.”

Cal Sanders was the founder of U-POL USA and a staunch supporter of industry initiatives.

Zubair “Zuby” Siddiqui, owner of Crescent Industries, knew Cal Sanders well and also shares his reminiscences. “I knew him for over 30 years, and he was just a super guy,” says Siddiqui. “He was down to earth, a good businessman and honourable. He was my hero. He believed giving his time to industry committees and programs was just something we had to do for the advancement of the industry.”

Uniparts O.E.M. celebrates 20th anniversary in Las Vegas With 20 years of remarkable growth under their belts, employees of Uniparts O.E.M./Unipiece were treated to a Vegas-style celebration that coincided with the recent SEMA Show in Nevada. “It was the 20th Anniversary of Uniparts. We celebrated by having our national sales meeting in Vegas. We invited everyone to come down. To make it a little more special, we told everyone to bring their spouses,” says Mike Kaplaniak of Uniparts O.E.M. Everyone from President Claude Zalac to the company’s office manager, Christine Reed, went along. In total 24 people made the trip, including Ontario and Quebec sales reps. They even brought a former consultant who had retired some time back. The group arrived on Tuesday, in time for the Canada night event attached to SEMA. Wednesday was a free day to take in the exotic sights and sounds of Vegas. “A lot of the group were first timers to Vegas so we thought we’d let them figure it out. We checked out different shows. Celine Dion was amazing. She puts on a hell of a performance,” says Kaplaniak. Thursday was the all-day national sales meeting at the Mirage Hotel. After that, it was time to take in the 2016 SEMA show, which they did as a group. The anniversary was celebrated in style with a big dinner at a revolving restaurant called Top of The World in the Stratosphere Hotel. On top of the restaurant is a carnival ride, the X-Scream, which some dared to try. “That was really good. We got to see Vegas from above. We went around in the restaurant twice. I didn’t try the ride though,” says Kaplaniak. The celebration was a fitting tribute to the hard work and dedication that has gone into growing the company to its current size. Zalac founded Uniparts in 1997. The company facilitates

Some of the Uniparts O.E.M. team at Top of the World in Las Vegas. The company has recently celebrated its 20th anniversary.

accessibility and management of genuine OEM parts. The company started out in a network of fifteen dealerships in the Laval region of Quebec. A year later the company expanded to Montreal. An advance to the South Shore of Montreal followed, and then a foray into Eastern Ontario began in 2005. Kaplaniak came into the organization four years ago and helped to expand the company across the rest of Ontario. “They had gone no further than Ottawa. That’s when we started talking and I came into the picture to help set up things up. Now we’ve completed that expansion over the last four years,” says Kaplaniak. Over this time the company has experienced a whirlwind of growth and expansion and is now represented in 145 dealerships in Quebec and over 100 dealers in Ontario. “Since we started in Ontario, we’ve doubled the sales of the prior year each year over that time. It’s going to be hard to keep that up,” says Kaplaniak. “We’re at the point where it’s going to be tough to double sales again.” Not that they won’t try. “Our goal is to continue expanding,” according to Kaplaniak. “We want to expand anywhere in Canada where our model works.” DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  25


Industry turns out for Tom Bissonnette’s retirement party It’s simple. When it comes down to it, it’s all about people. It’s about getting to know people, forming relationships, making a difference, being challenged and learning and growing. And that is what Tom Bissonnette is all about. September marked 16 years since Bissonnette and his wife Barb purchased Parr Auto Body, although Bissonnette had been a part of the industry for much, much longer than that. Over the years, Bissonnette has become a well-known part of the Canadian collision repair industry. He has gotten to know many industry stakeholders through his membership in numerous performance groups, his terms Tom Bissonnette at the party given in his honour at Parr Auto Body. as Chairman of the Canadian Collision Industry forum, and through his tireless work on behalf of initiatives such as Haiti ARISE, which is helping to build a technical school in Haiti. Bissonnette was also a popular columnist with Collision Repair magazine for many years. An event was recently held at Parr Auto Body to help celebrate the transition of majority ownership away from Tom and Barb, and to a number of senior staff. What transpired was a coming together of folks from all over Canada to celebrate a leader in our industry. Sandy and Lloyd Giles, owners of Giles Midtown Auto Body in Elrose, Saskatchewan. The event drew many locals as well as those from further afield.

Numerous stakeholders from across the Canadian industry travelled to attend the once-in-a-lifetime event. 26  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

The event featured refreshments and entertainmeny provided by world renowned musician Kyle Riabkowe. There was also a bit of a “roast” of Bissonnette, with many people from the industry who had known him over the years contributing favourite stories and anecdotes. While many of the stakeholders were local, there was no shortage of industry professionals who travelled a long distance to attend the party. Some of the more local attendees include Sandy and Lloyd Giles, owners of Giles Midtown Auto Body in Elrose, Saskatchewan, longtime customer of 60 years Harry Fleury and Adolf Kramer, a lifetime ambassador for Parr Auto Body who spent his entire career working for the facility. The party drew stakeholders literally from coast to coast, with Mike and Pat Srigley of Sunshine Autobody in British Columbia in attendance, as well as Derrick and Kathy Ryan of Garland Autobody from St. John’s, Newfoundland. Throughout the evening, Teen Challenge, a local Saskatchewan charity that deals with addictions, donated their time by volunteering with serving and clean up, highlighting Bissonnette’s spirit of giving back to the community he lives and works in. A young man from Teen Challenge spoke about his journey through addiction and overcoming it, bringing to light the challenges that face our youth today. All in all, it comes back to people. “Tom has a knack for talking to people, building relationships and bringing people together. The evening was a great success and we are all proud to call Tom our mentor and our friend,” says Chelsea Stebner of Parr Auto Body.


CSN honours exceptional shops at annual awards It’s important to acknowledge those who perform above and beyond what’s expected. A desire to give credit and recognition for those exceptional efforts underlies the awards given out by CSN Collision Centres at its recent conference in Vancouver. Gary Laschuk, and his team at CSN-Reflections in Edmonton, Alberta, were the proud recipients of two awards at the conference. First, they took home one of the three CSN Experience Awards. The CSN Experience Awards are given to CSN members that have displayed passion, commitment, corporate citizenship, dedication and customer service above and beyond the average. Receiving the award is definitely a reason to be proud. You can tell that Laschuk feels even more pride for his team’s accomplishments when he discusses the ultimate award they won that night: the CSN Shop of the Year Award. The Shop of the Year Award specifically recognizes the CSN member facility that demonstrates commitment and dedication to their growth in sales, customer service, growth and support of the CSN network, participation in the industry and positive outlook and results through their activities year over year. “It was a great night,” said Laschuk. “A year ago, the staff and I thought ‘we want to win this,’ so we made it a priority and worked with CSN to come up with some new ideas and best practices.” CSN-Reflections Auto Body was the first facility west of Ontario to join the CSN network. Laschuk was approached by CSN in 2009 and signed on. The CSN corporate team is proud that this facility was the first in western Canada to take home CSN Shop of the Year. “When I first took on the role of Alberta Regional Manager and met with Gary he told me his goal in 2016 was to be the CSN Shop Of The Year,” said Kari Barton of CSN Collision Centres. “He never wavered from his goal and was set on going from good to great. Gary’s ambition and drive ignite the passion he shows towards his business on a daily basis. I’m so proud of Gary and his team, and I am confident that this is achievement is not only a win for CSN - Reflections but also an inspiration to others in our network, especially in the Alberta region.” Laschuk says they knew a year ago that they needed to grow to take better care of their business partners. “We expanded the shop, got rid of a paint booth and put in two new ones,” he says, noting that there were also new processes put in place. “We really worked on our flow. We’re a very lean running shop, and part of the expansion was to design the layout so cars would flow through a lot better.” The entire face of the collision repair facility was also redone, including refurbishing the 40 by 10 foot sign outside. “We’ve got a good reputation locally and we’ve always been known as Reflections Auto Body,” says Laschuk. “Now we’re known as CSNReflections and we’re very proud of that.” Melanie MacKenzie also has reason to be proud. MacKenzie is the manager of CSN-Crown in Saint John, New Brunswick. The facility won the award for Sales Growth in the 8,001 to 12,000 sq. ft. category. She accepted the award with Chris Downey, the facility’s owner. MacKenzie has been with the facility for about 15 years, starting as a receptionist. From there, she moved into invoicing, billing, repair planning and got her hands dirty in the production area. She became the facility’s manager last June. “I believe our sales growth over the last year is the result of new 28  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

Gary Laschuk of CSN-Reflections accepts the award for CSN Shop of the Year from Alberta Regional Manager Kari Barton and Manager of Network Performance Mark Roesch (right).

processes and some new people on the floor,” she said. “Combined with our everyday business, that’s what made the difference.” “Congratulations to all of our winners this year. They are the leaders in our network and should be very proud of their accomplishments,” said Jenny Trokic, Marketing Manager for CSN Collision Centres. “These CSN collision centres, especially CSN - Reflections, have shown nothing but dedication and commitment to our philosophy and brand. We believe that they are prime examples of what it means to be best in class.” For more information on CSN Collision Centres, please visit See below for a complete list of award winners. For more information on the CSN conference, please see page 47 in this issue. CSN Experience Awards • Under 8,000 sq. ft.: CSN–Kingston in Kingston, Ontario • 8,001 to 12,000 sq. ft.: CSN-Hutten in Fergus, Ontario • 12,001+ sq. ft.: CSN–Reflections in Edmonton, Alberta Sales Growth Awards • Under 8,000 sq. ft.: CSN–Premier in Edmonton, Alberta • 8,001 to 12,000 sq. ft.: CSN–Crown in Saint John, New Brunswick • 12,001+ sq. ft.: CSN–Highway 27 in Woodbridge, Ontario CSNdex Customer Satisfaction Awards • Under 8,000 sq. ft.: CSN–Cowichan in Duncan, British Columbia • 8,001 to 12,000 sq. ft.: CSN–Maple Leaf in Niagara Falls, Ontario • 12,001+ sq. ft.: CSN–Jones in London, Ontario CSN Shop of the Year Award • CSN–Reflections in Edmonton, Alberta


THEUNCOACHABLE Some people refuse to change, no matter the motivation.

By Jay Perry


ave any difficult people in your life? We all do. Part of my mandate with clients is to assess their people. Recently one of my clients had tried in many ways and on many occasions to help a key person to excel and grow in their organization. I had to observe and lend a hand through sharing with my client what I had concluded about the individual. The following is the result of those observations. While trying hard to not make generalizations I have found that some people have personal attitudes

though we are different, and our stories do not match each other, we are all equals. The superiority complex is a mental device devised to help us move from difficult situations. When we start to operate inside of a more balanced environment, it holds no value and thus needs to be abandoned. Attitude #4: Too old to learn, also known as “I already know this stuff.” Every single person on Earth learns something every single day. That is a fact. You either learn about something you can do or you learn about something you can no longer do.

WHY NOT CHOOSE TO LEARN SOMETHING THAT WILL PROPEL YOU FORWARD AS OPPOSED TO HOLDING YOU BACK? that prevent them from moving forward, thus they also hold back the company. Be on the lookout for these attitudes within your people because they poison the culture and hold back the corporation. Attitude #1: Relying on experience as opposed to obser vation. This individual thinks that the experience gained over time is applicable to all current situations. This flies in the face of reality. Everything changes over time. Experience can be irrelevant when facing the challenges of rapidly shifting business landscapes. Attitude #2: Perceiving commentary as criticism. When someone believes that people are against them (or inferior to them, see next paragraph), even when comments are meant to help them, they will reject those comments. They will view those comments as detrimental, negative and demeaning instead of helpful. An attitude of closed-mindedness prevents them from hearing things that can be improved in areas where they actually have control. Attitude #3: Superiority complex. This is where it gets weird because any superiority complex is in fact (psychologically speaking) a reversal of inferior self-doubt. If a person thinks they are superior to everyone, it is because they have a deep-rooted fear of being inferior. Truth is we are all equal. Even

The point is, you learn. If you learn, why not choose to learn something that will propel you forward as opposed to holding you back? It is every person’s right to make that choice. Are you too old to learn? The culture of business is changing (for the better) and when you discover someone does not fit with your culture, they need to change or leave. You will not be able to soar like an eagle if you are forced to fly with turkeys. Get rid of the turkeys if they refuse to turn into eagles. We’ll embark upon a discussion over the next few issues about the true nature and value of leadership, but this article is really about taking inventory. Think of your operation like a bus. You must take that inventory to determine if the right people are on the bus in the first place. In the near future we will talk about sorting them out and getting them into the right seat. It is the only way you can be the one who’s driving! Jay Perry is co-author of the book “Success Manifesto” with Brian Tracy, and the founder of Ally Business Coaching, a process improvement and leadership development firm. He can be reached at



GREENERPASTURE There’s an art and science to making sure your shop is the one where people want to work. By Chelsea Stebner


ll across our great nation, good journeyperson collision technicians are in short supply. These folks are a hot ticket item that shops everywhere are fighting for. In your business, what are you doing to ensure you attract the right people? And once attracted, how do you keep them? In addition to that, if you’ve made the mistake of hiring the wrong person, how in the world do you let them down nicely? We’ve all heard the line “hire slow, fire fast.” We’ve all had that soft spot for someone that we truly want to fit in and work with the team and they simply don’t. In making those tough decisions, think long term. If you keep someone on your team who doesn’t fit, you’re short-changing them. Each person has a place and if it’s not yours, get them out so they can find it. Sit down, do an exit interview and be honest. Keep it simple of course, but tell them why this isn’t working for you, but also some kind observations of where their next move might be.


Often that conversation is the catalyst for change and will open a new door for that person. Several years ago, our leader made the decision for change starting in our production shop. Getting rid of flat rate was the first step, and then making sure the right people were in the right places, and that meant cleaning house. It came down to building a culture in our shop, working with a team to achieve those goals and winning together. Over the next few years, we built the team from a young, green group of technicians, along with a couple of seasoned mentors, to create our close knit team. We practice open book management. Basically, this is a management approach whereby employees are provided with company financial information to enable them to make better business decisions. I can tell you from experience that it plays a huge part in keeping us all honest and working together to earn more dollars collectively. So do our values within the business. What else do we do to ensure we keep the right people in the


right places, while giving them every opportunity to grow as individuals and to make a difference here at the shop? The basic things we offer: a good wage, benefits packages, Employee and Family Assistance Programs and RRSPs. What about pension plans and training incentives? Do you provide flexible working hours for folks with families and RESPs or scholarships for your employees’ kids? What about bursaries for your

encourage ownership of each job to help keep things fresh. Encourage your team to be involved in their community, to volunteer or to support a passion of theirs. If a teammate is interested in additional training why not offer them incentive for classes at the local college? When we invest in our teams, we are showing in them that we believe in them, trust them and want them to succeed in their whole lives. Start introducing and sustaining opportunities like

WHAT ABOUT PENSION PLANS AND TRAINING INCENTIVES? DO YOU PROVIDE FLEXIBLE WORKING HOURS? apprentices so they can get the training they need and struggle a bit less during school? Do you bring guest speakers in for staff meetings or have team building sessions? Maybe you volunteer together or have a staff fun nights. You’re never going to please everyone all of the time but with options like these, coming to work at your business and staying there should be enticing for a wide variety of repair professionals. In smaller businesses, there may not be lots of room to move up the ladder so to speak or move around, but additional training and cross-training opportunities

this and your shop will be the greener pasture, the place that attracts—and keeps!—the very best staff members the industry has to offer.

Chelsea Stebner is a co-owner/operator of Parr Auto Body, a collision repair facility located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. She can be reached at



PERFORMANCEKEY I-CAR updates Production Management curriculum.

By Andrew Shepherd


-CAR US Director of Curriculum and Product Development, Josh McFarlin, recently announced the release of new curriculum in the Production Management role, noting that it is geared toward new production systems found in modern collision repair facilities. This is essential material for anyone who wants to produce high volumes of quality repairs. McFarlin noted that “There’s not only a ‘Technical Tsunami’ hitting the collision repair industry—vehicles built with non-traditional metals and composites which require new tools, techniques and processes—but it’s also evolving business as we know it. Whether you’re a shop owner or part of the management team that keeps business running smoothly, there are a certain set of skills

management curriculum, which focuses on the repair or production process. When the new curriculum was introduced in 2015, it helped provide the end-to-end production-management knowledge needed to drive process improvements and maximize shop performance. This draws upon a diverse skill set which can range from finding the right talent to blueprinting processes. TOPICS The Production Management role covers topics such as understand the learning culture; the blueprinting process; workflow design and management; quality control;

WHY DOES THE CANADIAN COLLISION REPAIR INDUSTRY STAND OUT IN THIS WORLD? THE ANSWER SURELY LIES IN OUR COMMUNITY. required to run a successful business today that weren’t as critical in the past.” These business conditions increasingly include a more “industrial” approach to the business of collision repair. This approach has largely been fostered by the bigger MSOs and networks that deal with more than one shop. KEY TO PERFORMANCE In addition most of the collision repair sector is grappling with an unending need and desire to achieve key performance indicator (KPI) levels set by business partners—as well as profitability targets. Shops of all sizes have to become more operationally efficient and smarter with the resources they do have, all the while breaking down silos, tracking KPIs and aggressively looking for ways to grow and maintain business. The answer, according to I-CAR, is a focus on the knowledge and skills resources of the company. In 2010, I-CAR began working with the industry to develop educational resources to build management acumen with the rollout of the Professional Development Program. As that program was being developed with a focus on technical knowledge and skills, I-CAR recognized the future need for another element: the production 34  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

personnel and business management; cycle time analysis; building vendor and network relationships; company financials and meeting KPIs. Training paths can now be tailored to the role-specific knowledge needs of collision repair professionals involved in shop-wide production processes, as well as for those responsible only for sub-elements of the process. This makes the curriculum more relevant to all repair organizations, regardless of how the production management process is executed. McFarlin concluded that “Business is changing fast for collision repair professionals, with no signs of slowing. In line with this shift, the skills required to be successful are changing. While individual efficiencies and expertise will continue to remain key to quality of work, enhanced production process acumen will also help today’s shops build a better business.” Registration for Production Management courses is available at Andrew Shepherd is the Executive Director of I-CAR Canada, a non-profit organization that provides collision repair training and ongoing education. He can be reached via e-mail at



VOICE The owner of Brent Gerrits Collision & Refinishing makes sure rural issues are on the table. By Jeff Sanford Brent Gerrits is the owner/operator of Brent Gerrits Collision & Refinishing in Port Williams, Nova Scotia. He is active on industry committees, in part to help ensure rural and independent shops have a voice.


rent Gerrits Collision & Refinishing is a proudly independent collision repair centre in Port Williams, Nova Scotia that has been providing service to this rural community for 25 years. According to the proprietor, Brent Gerrits, this is a job he was born to do. “My mother always said she saw it coming,” Gerrits says. Maintaining his independent status in the Nova Scotia collision repair industry, however, has involved a lot of hard work. Today Gerrit involves himself in government rule setting efforts as a way of ensuring he doesn’t get bowled over by the bigger banner chains in the region. His story will strike a chord with many independent shop owners across Canada. Gerrits’ parents immigrated to this country from the Netherlands in the mid-50s. Gerrits got involved in the auto sector early on. “I bought my first vehicle when I was sixteen. It was a ‘62 Chev pick-up that needed a fender and had to be patched up. My father was an automotive repair technician so he had all the equipment,” says Gerrits. It wasn’t long after that his mother says she saw what was coming. “She she could see that I had an interest in this trade. I came in at an early age,” he says. “Early on I knew I wanted my own shop. I knew that right from my late teens.” Gerrits worked in the industry for 10 years, moving around to different shops. In May of 1990 Brent Gerrits Collision Refinishing opened for business. Only one year later in February 2000 the shop achieved I-CAR Gold Class status. “It was always my objective to be selfemployed. I didn’t see the downside at that time,” he says with a chuckle. Today the facility services a largely rural clientele in Kings County, Nova Scotia, which is a relatively wealthy rural area of the Atlantic province. “We’re busy. We’re fortunate in this portion of the province. Kings County is a good area,” says Gerrits. DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  37


The region is home to almost 35,000 people. The agricultural base is solid. Local farmers produce supplymanaged commodities like chicken and dairy, as well as onions and carrots. There’s a Michelin tire plant nearby, so there are some big employers. Gerrits can see Acadia University across the river from his shop. The economy is diversified and the shop is busy. “We’re a typical rural shop. We see a lot of deer collisions. The occasional tractor comes in. That typically happens when someone turns to pass a slow-moving tractor just as it’s making a left hand turn. One of my employees just said the other day he’s seeing a lot of tractors on the road now as planting season begins. So we’ll see some of that business soon,” says Gerrits. The shop is a compact 2,500 sq. ft. There is an apprentice and a journeyman on the floor, in addition to Gerrits, who fits the definition of a hands-on owner. The shop has developed a reputation in the local area for quality work. “A lot of times a customer comes in and says, ‘So and so says that you’re good.’ I think in the rural areas I have a personal reputation,” he says. The good reputation follows on a solid work ethic. “It’s always been my objective to fix it right the first time and then don’t quibble if we messed up. Carry on. Get it right,” says Gerrits, who makes a point of applying a personal approach in his dealings with clients. “A lot of times when I talk to a customer I question them on what they did that day. If they have an interesting name I’ll ask about their background. I look for some sort of connection outside of the business aspect of it. I’m genuinely interested in people. It’s not a bad business model.” Gerrits’ independence goes beyond not joining a large network or MSO. “I’m not signed on as a DRP to any insurer. I’m independent because I want to be independent,” he says. “There’s a couple of network facilities in my area, the DRPs have approached me, but

A classic arrangement. Brent Gerrits works on the floor and manages production. His wife Susan manages the facility’s financials.

“We have some of the bigger players around that table. Looking at revamping the apprenticeship program, I’ve had to say, ‘That might work for you guys. But it’s not going to work for the independent,’” he says. Gerrits is also a member of the Nova Scotia Automotive Sector Council. “We try to engage youth in automotive trades. We’ll go into junior high schools and talk

“As an independent, Gerrits had to make a point of becoming involved and active in industry issues in the province.” I have to relinquish too much independence. We’re doing fine without. Why would I cut anyone in on my profit?” As an independent, Gerrits had to make a point of becoming involved and active in industry issues in the province. He is a member of the Provincial Trade Advisory Committee for the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship agency. “I’ve been involved in the industry because I want to see it move forward. Autobody is now a mandatory certified trade. That’s finally come about almost a decade after that initiative started. A lot of my motivation is to give a small business owners a voice,” he says. Gerrits believes it is important for smaller independents to be at the same table as the bigger players. What works for a national network may not work for an independent operator. The independent shop owners still form the majority of the industry, so any solutions must take them into account. 38  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

about the automotive sector and trades in general.” He recently attend the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum. “Even there, again I look at the board of directors of that and I see they’re all from large corporations. As a small independent I worry that policies are going to be developed that I can’t keep up with,” he says. “I do what I can. I keep an eye on it. Call it administrative oversight. I think that’s critical. Certainly over the long-term. If it is enough to keep you getting run over by the bus, at least it was worthwhile. I think it’s important to enlighten these guys that there is another world out there.” Gerrits appreciates the greater focus in recent years on apprenticeships. Nova Scotia has a program known as “direct entry,” which is a form of co-op program where a prospective apprentice just walks through the door without first registering at a school.


A smaller shop means the opportunity to develop a wider skill set. Technicians must be adept not only at repair, but at customer service.

“You get them registered as an apprentice with no prior training,” says Gerrits. That is important in a rural area. Being flexible in terms of training possibilities are key in an area where there are few local school programs for training. “The only place that offers that is in the Halifax area,” says Gerrits. Any shop owner outside of a larger urban centre will understand the problem that entails. Gerrits has had bad luck sending local kids to classes in a big city like Halifax. Once the young recruits get to the big city, they’re much less likely to return. “Students go in there and never come back out. I call Halifax the black hole,” says Gerrits. That said, Gerrits thinks there is a benefit for apprentices training in a smaller shop. They learn all the different roles involved in running a successful business, which might not happen in a larger shop where roles are divided among employees. “I don’t have the luxury of pigeonholing my employees,” he says. “The guys in a smaller shop have to possess a wide range of skills. You have to have front office skills in terms of answering the phone and dealing with the customers. In a lot of bigger shops you’re going to get preppers that are into their third year. The apprentice I have, he’s painting, he’s changed quarter panels, he’s done a lot of the bolt-on parts replacement. That’s one of the benefits of being in a smaller shop. You develop a much wider skill base. The apprentice I have right now said he was talking to his classmates and he flat-out said, ‘If I had to do one job over and over I’d quit.’ He needs the stimulation that comes with doing many different things in the shop.” Nevertheless, the fight to find good talent goes on. Gerrits would like to see some more flexibility from the government in terms of people brought over on temporary

worker permits. Gerrit tells a story about an Icelander he had employed who was in Canada on a temporary foreign worker permit. “When it expired he was rejected and had to go back. The sad part was that he had a family here. His kids went to school here. They had friends, property, roots ... and he had to move back. They really want to come back here,” says Gerrit. He notes that government has been a little more receptive on this issue of late, but often, “Administratively, they keep throwing up more roadblocks.” Even though, “Immigration is important. I know one shop in Halifax is importing four guys from England,” says Gerrits. Life on the ground in the modern collision repair industry goes on. You can be sure Gerrit will continue to make his independent voice heard.

A hands-on owner, Gerrits gets involved in every stage of the repair process.





Debbie Day and Jack Rozint of Mitchell on industry trends and Mitchell Parts.


xecutive Vision focuses on discussions with key players in the auto claims economy. Darryl Simmons, Publisher of Collision Repair magazine, sat down with Debbie Day and Jack Rozint of Mitchell at the 2016 SEMA Show to discuss Mitchell’s new parts procurement solution, Mitchell Parts, powered by uParts, and the trends impacting the industry today and in the future.

Collision Repair magazine: Mitchell’s philosophy is to embrace technological change in order to best serve their customers. So with the acquisition of uParts, how will this be delivered? Debbie Day: Mitchell is 70 years old this year, and we’re built on the auto physical damage from all that time ago. What’s still the case is that Mitchell is about empowering better outcomes. By that, we mean a varied set of stakeholders - could be the carriers, could be the repairers, it could be the parts providers. With Debbie Day, EVP and General Manager of Mitchell’s Auto Jack Rozint, Mitchell’s VP of Sales & Service, Repair. Mitchell Parts, powered by uParts, Physical Damage Business Unit. it’s really significant because it can be used by any shop, on any part, for free, and it will help the repairer workflow, single part type reliably, and it does so on DD: We looked a long time at this, and instead of creating friction. a level playing field. It doesn’t give one we’re making a very deep integration. It’s supplier of one type of parts an advantage. actually going to be embedded in four Jack Rozint: There have been so many It allows the repairer to make a decision, different Mitchell solutions: the estimate attempts to automate parts procurement, aided by the intelligence of the system, on itself, it’s going to be in RepairCenter, it’s going back to the ‘90s, when some of the first that particular repair. going to be embedded in our analytics and electronics parts procurement programs That “particular repair” is a certain our connectivity, and our next generation started showing up, and virtually all of them type of vehicle for a certain insurer, estimating, which is all going to be in the have fallen short of expectations because of who may be on a DRP program or not. cloud. We took some time to evaluate their inability to work on every transaction, The system is intelligent enough to it to make sure we got the integration every day. So, there’s one solution that works base the parts suggestion it will make right. We’ll be rolling out first in southern great on OEM parts, one that works great to the user, to say “this bundle of parts California, then elsewhere. on aftermarket parts, there’s one solution is going to work best for you, because that’s mandated by a certain insurer but the we’ve got all of your preferences loaded CRM: So we will be getting this in Canada? shops don’t like it, the suppliers don’t like it. in.” The repairer can then look at that, There are all of these different procurement push a button and all the parts orders DD: Yes! It’s funny you should say that. networks out there, and none of them is really go off with a single click. It works with taking hold. every supplier of every type of part, and JR: When we came out of our recent We built a strategic alliance with it brings significant efficiency to both conference, where we had our customer uParts because they have a platform that’s the suppliers and the shops. It’s the first advisory council, and some of our top based in the cloud. It’s completely device system we’ve ever seen that does all of Canadian customers literally walked independent and can work with anybody that. We think it’s really going to change out of the room and grabbed me using any software. It works with every the game. and said “We want this in Canada.” 40  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM


CRM: This sounds like once again it ties into your philosophy of working with technology. How will you adapt to other trends in the industry? It’s not just change, it seems like there’s a revolution at stake. DD: I’m going to pick out a few of the trends that we think are really significant. One is that mobility is a must. Every consumer is walking around with a camera right now, taking photos, and getting that integrated with first notice of loss and making a better dispatch, whether it be to a staff appraiser or total loss or repair. That gives us a lot more intelligence. The second one is consumer self-service, or the role of the consumer who wants to initiate a claim and be kept apprised of status. That’s big. The third is the idea that machines help humans, the idea of artificial intelligence.

Every year it’s more and more of an issue. From the adaptive cruise control, to the 360-degree cameras, to just more and more technology. A mirror replacement these days is actually a computer repair job along with replacing the part. That complexity is a challenge for repairers. As information providers, we’ve got a very good product called TechAdvisor that has a lot of repair information. We’re looking at how we can get that information more integrated into the workflow, so that as you’re developing the estimate and repair plan that all the information is at your fingertips so you can make better decisions, whether they’re just developing the estimate or actually fixing the car. It’s fairly apparent today that it may no longer be a world where every shop can fix every car. That leads to questions about what kind of intelligent dispatching tools might be needed in the future, so that when you

JR: Where the car itself, through telematics, is informing another party of the parts needed for the repair, that’s still a bit down the road. But we do have a very close relationship with Toyota and their certified collision repair program, and the specific Toyota estimating template lets you get very quickly to an estimate. Instead of the old way of building an estimate, where you start with a blank sheet and build it line by line, you now select the damaged area of the vehicle on the Toyota template, and you actually get a complete estimate with just a couple of clicks. You can deselect the parts that aren’t damaged. It’s a whole new methodology of estimating that’s proven very effective. The other thing that’s really effective about that, is it puts the Toyota repair procedures right into the process. You’re not going out of the estimating system

“Mobility is a must. Every consumer is walking around with a camera right now.” – Debbie Day You might have seen the announcement we made with a company called Tractable. The idea here is, just via photos, machines can assess damage. We’re going to start with this technology in the review function. A human writes the estimate, but before you commit it, you have the machine take a look. It will make recommendations, like saying “maybe instead of repairing that, you could replace it,” or vice versa. And the machine will start learning. The idea of incorporating machine learning into a human intensive system is very exciting. We’ve been working hard on that. CRM: So the machine intelligence will get better with each estimate, and self-correct? DD: Exactly. It’s funny, but Tractable was only looking at a few industries: oil and gas, biotech and insurance claims. They believe there’s so much opportunity, and when I think about the industry, frequency is up, severity is up and we’ve got to do more with less. The pressure to perform is high. It can help the insurers, the shops and the consumers, all the way through the shop. JR: The first trend that comes to my mind is the increasing complexity of vehicles. That’s a problem that’s not going away.

have a Ford F150 that’s been in a rollover, you have to get that vehicle to a facility that has aluminum repair capabilities. That leads directly to my next major trend, and that’s the increasing influence of the OEMs. For years they were selling parts into the collision process, but pretty much staying out of the operations part of the industry and not really interacting much with the consumer aspect of collision repair. You see that changing now. You see the OEMs getting more active. If a consumer has a bad experience with a collision repair, it taints the brand. Therefore it affects the opportunity to sell a customer another vehicle of that brand. They still have a desire to sell parts, of course, but overriding that is the protection of their brand equity by making sure repairs are completed effectively. We work with a number of OEMs in how they integrate their information, procedures and methodology to help the repairer get that vehicle returned to the safety and function it had when it left the factory. CRM: Along with that, would there be the advanced triage that you’ve been working on with Toyota? For example, if the sensors report that the car has been hit in the right quarter, so therefore send all the parts for a right quarter?

and going to another computer screen and looking up Toyota’s Technical Information System to find the procedure you need or to find out if a part is reusable or not. In that template, it’s telling you “that windshield nozzle can’t be reused” and you can make a good decision on the first estimate, rather than having to submit a supplement. CRM: It seems like there’s a lot of stuff coming up for Mitchell’s 70th birthday. Where do you see yourselves in the next 70 years? What can we expect from Mitchell in 2086? Where will we be even in 2020? DD: I love technology and I heard something last week that fascinated me. Our grandchildren are going to look at us with our smartphones, and say “Look how cute you were.” I think one thing that will always be with us, no matter how technology advances, is that you’re going to want to take care of that consumer. You’re going to want a proper repair and make sure that it’s safe. There’s going to be tons of technology that emerges and the OEMs are going to continue to make cars smarter. The cars are going to start to tell us what’s wrong with them, the same way we tell the doctor, “Hey, my left front quarter panel hurts.” DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  41




he Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) is currently undergoing a significant change in Canada. WHMIS is a system that provides suppliers, employers, employees and individuals with the necessary information to ensure their safety as they interact with hazardous materials in the workplace. Currently, WHMIS in Canada is in a multi-year transition in order to align with the Globally Harmonized System of

Safety Consultant with extensive collision repair experience. He notes that WHMIS in Canada has not seen a significant alteration since its adoption back in 1998, but that’s about to change. For example, WHMIS 1988 had only eight hazard classifications. The new WHMIS, in accordance with GHS, has over 30 classification hazard classes. Gabriele points to the importance of recognizing these changes. It is not just that there are more categories. The way hazards

“Many collision repair facilities are seeing the new supplier labels and Safety Data Sheets (SDS) enter their workplaces today as many of the paint manufacturing companies and suppliers have already completed their transition to the Globally Harmonized System,” says Gabriele. In other words, some of your suppliers are probably already using the new symbols. Ensuring staff understand that these changes have occurred and what the

“WHMIS in Canada has not seen a significant alteration since its adoption ... that’s about to change.” Classification and Labelling of Chemicals, most commonly recognized as the Globally Harmonized System (GHS). Employers are responsible for ensuring all employees are trained on the most upto-date WHMIS. The importance of proper training aligns with the mandate to protect employees and employers. As we are currently in the middle of a transition, it’s important to take the time and initiative to understand these changes. Many suppliers have already begun taking action in adopting the GHS. It is time for employers to do so as well. Rob Gabriele is a Certified Health &

are indicated has changed significantly. “The new WHMIS is significantly different from the previous version in that hazard classes have been further redefined, going from eight to 31,” says Gabriele. “Additionally, it is very important that employers make sure their employees are able to recognize the hazard pictograms as they are look very different from WHMIS 1988 symbols.” The transition to WHMIS 2015 won’t happen overnight. It’s a project that requires employers and staff to take the time and learn about the changes that are occurring in all areas of their workplace.

changes mean is extremely important. Although the transition time for WHMIS 2015 is suggested to take place over a “multi-year transition period” as outlined by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety (CCOHS), symbols, labels and safety data sheets worldwide have already changed or are in progress. Staying up-to-date and as safe as possible requires that workers partake in WHMIS training. Training is required even for those who don’t use the products directly. In Gabriele’s view, this is one of the most significant changes to WHMIS.



“Now every worker who may be exposed to a hazardous or controlled product must be trained. Previously, only those workers who handled or worked in proximity of the product required training,” he says. Gabriele believes training on WHMIS is essential to keeping your employees and your business safe. “The change is happening now and the call to action for employers is to make sure that their employees are trained in

the new WHMIS standard as more and more products are adopting the globally harmonized system,” says Gabriele. “Providing workers with the most accurate and current information on hazardous materials protects them from injury and illness.” Gabriele is employed with SafetyOne Consulting. For more information, please call (647) 558-4676 or email to info@


Rob Gabriele of SafetyOne Consulting. Gabriele has years of experience working with the collision industry.





Clockwise from top left: Kellie D’Alesandro, Lorenzo D’Alessandro of CSN-427 Auto Collision and Gloria Mann of Collision Repair magazine; Trista Anger-Miklusek of CSN Collision Centres, Kellie and Raj Kavia of CSN-Kavia Auto Body and Joe Carvalho of Economical Insurance; Jay Hayward, CSN Collision Centre’s Vice President of Operations; Derek Bennie of CSN Collision Centres, Manuel Der Haroutiounian of CSN-Bayview Steeles, Richard March of CSN-Brimell, Lianne Perissinotti Le Rue of CSN Collision Centres and Dana Alexader of CSN-Dana’s Collision; Rob Pavan of CSN-Golden Triangle and Flavio Battilana, Chief Operations Officer for CSN Collision Centres.


he message at CSN Collision Centres’ latest annual conference was clear, whether it related to nutrition, stress, or customer experience, everyone could agree: performance drives the business. This year’s conference took place at Westin Bayshore in Vancouver, BC, with the theme of “Performance Driven.” The 2016 event opened on September 22 with the official dinner and the opening of the Vendor Trade Show. James Cunningham served as emcee. You may remember Cunningham as the host of the TV show Eat St., which airs on Cooking Channel USA, Food Network Canada, and in more than a dozen other countries. The conference really got rolling the morning of September 23, with a short opening address by Cunningham, who then introduced Flavio Battilana, Chief Operating Officer for CSN Collision Centres. Battilana updated attendees on the success of the network in the last year and outlined what they will face in the future. “The CSN Performance Driven conference was an excellent opportunity to prepare for future performance needs and expectations of our network,” Battilana said. “The level of performance required to satisfy not only the vehicle repair requirements, but to meet customer

expectation are increasing at a rate never seen before. A commitment and culture of performance is required to ensure future sustainability and CSN is committed to matching and surpassing those expectations.” Then came the “Checklist of Champions.” Mike Lipkin, founder of Environics/Lipkin, and author of nine books on leadership, listed the items he says are directly related to performance. The next speaker also focused on performance, but in a somewhat unusual way. Carmen Dunn is an orthomolecular nutritionist who spoke on nutrition and its effects on performance in terms of bodily health. Dunn served up a refreshing reminder that the performance of an individual is often very similar to that of a business; what goes into the body will directly impact what gets done. The coffee break that followed helped drive performance back on stage, as the insight continued when Flavio Battilana returned, accompanied by Jay Hayward and Larry French of CSN Collision Centres. Then, Mike Black, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Dent Wizard showed his presentation, titled: “It’s About the People.” In Black’s analysis, the performance of any business comes down to the people involved and how their skills are utilized. DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  47


Dunn agreed, following Black with another short session on health, but this time looking at stress management, and how to perform under pressure. Running a high-performing collision repair facility can put a lot of pressure on management and staff, so Dunn’s session focused on how to turn that stress into a performance advantage. An industry update and performance panel followed lunch. Moderated by Trista Anger-Miklusek of CSN Collision Centres, the panelists included Joe Carvalho of Economical Insurance, Chris Hancock of ICBC, Luc Ruest of TD Insurance, Steve Wade of Intact, Jake Rodenroth of AsTech and Scott Wideman of Volkswagen/Audi. “The industry panel lent itself directly to the overall Conference theme of “Performance Driven,” identifying that the measure of performance in today’s collision repair industry is changing,” said Anger-Miklusek. “It was clear from the panel discussion that insurers, vendors, OEMs and collision repair facilities all have a variety of different performance measures, but everyone has the same top priority of safe and correct repairs for the consumer.” Rounding out the day’s session, Dave Carroll discussed customer experience in the age of social media. Carroll is something of a practical expert in this area, when a trip on United Airlines resulted in his favourite guitar being severely damaged in flight. Nine months of calls and emails asking United Airlines to compensate were ignored, so Carroll took his grievance to the Internet and posted a song on YouTube titled “United Breaks Guitars.” It was a different kind of performance from the one usually talked about at this CSN conference, but it was certainly effective. The video was seen by over 150 million people worldwide, and touched off an avalance of bad press for United Airlines as the company’s stock plunged. At a practical level Carroll demonstrated the importance of customer service, social media, branding and the power of one voice to make a difference.

Dave Carroll, above, discussed customer experience in the age of social media and entertained attendees with his song ‘United Breaks Guitars.’

John and Joanne Hutten of CSN-Hutten accept a CSN Experience Award from CSN’s Kari Barton and Mark Roesch (right). For more on the CSN Awards, please see page 28.

When the day concluded it came time to recognize outstanding performance with the gala dinner and awards ceremony. For more on the CSN awards, please see page 28 in this issue. More information on CSN Collision Centres is available at

Clockwise from top left: Sharon Ashley of BodyshopConnect and Matthew Bannister of Titanium Tools & Equipment; Dustin and Larry King of Caruk & Associates; Darryl Simmons of Collision Repair magazine and Dave Smith and Sylvain Seguin of AkzoNobel; Nick Di Luca of CSN-CARS Collision and Osvaldo Bergaglio of Symach; Larry French of CSN Collision Centres and Darryl Kruger of CSN-ON LINE; George and Myra See of CSN-Lakeshore.



ll part of one out of the five

just one sma A Show. This shot shows size and scope of the SEM run. It’s hard to get the sheer w’s Sho A SEM the to capacity for Center that were packed



halls at the Las Vegas Con




he 2016 SEMA Show is hard to describe, but frankly it’s almost as hard to experience. Thousands of stakeholders from across the automotive world crowded into the Las Vegas Convention Center for the annual event. “Crowded” is the right term to use here. The SEMA Show covers more than 1 million sq. ft., and there was still barely room to move. This year’s show featured over 2,400 exhibitors and over 2,500 new products for collision repair, refinishing, restyling and much more. The 2016 SEMA Show is split over five halls: North Hall, Central Hall, South Hall Upper and Lower and the Performance Pavilion. Most of the collision repair and refinish exhibits

are located in North Hall, but the sheer size of just that one part of the show taxes the imagination. Most of the major suppliers to the industry were present, with each exhibit attempting to outdo the next. However, SEMA also set aside a special section for first time and featured exhibitors. Located in the Westgate Hotel, the special section was created for new exhibitors displaying products typically found in other sections of the SEMA Show. Think of it as a one-stop shop for new and innovative brands. Don Morton is the owner of DonMor CARSTAR in London, Ontario. He’s attended eight of the last 10 SEMA Shows and estimates that this may have have been the biggest yet.

“I found the collision repair side bigger than ever before. That’s the area where I spent most of my time,” says Morton. This likely resonates with many of the repairers who attended the 2016 SEMA Show: there’s simply too much to see everything. However, Morton notes that one of the best parts of the show is that he can see everything he’s interested in, from a business perspective, side-by-side. “Everything we’re looking at going forward, everything we’re looking for in terms of equipment, was right on site,” he says. “It gives you a chance to compare items head-to-head. You can see all of the resistance spot welders, and even smaller pieces of equipment. Everything we need was right there.” DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  51


Opening up and showing off details. The sheer amount of work that goes into some of the show cars at the 2016 SEMA Show will leave you breathless. Just look at the work that has gone into the interior of the trunk alone! The halls are huge, but some displays are better outdoors, including this complete spraybooth set up by Axalta and Global Finishing Solutions.

Harry Dhanjal of BASF and Billy Maxwell of KAPE, a Color Source distributor with locations in Texas and Colorado.

Darryl Simmons, Publisher of Collision Repair magazine, and Willy Gallo, Bodyshop Manager of Pinewood Collision Center in Thunder Bay.

In addition to the many vendors, the SEMA Show offers a staggering number of courses, workshops and seminars. The Society of Collision Repair Specialists ran its Repairer Driven Education series to great acclaim. Included topics ran the gamut, but it may have been the various panels and discussions on scanning and calibration that garnered the most attention. Speaking of calibration, industry training organization I-CAR was there in force, with courses running every day. Most exciting, however, was the news that I-CAR has launched a new information resource for repairers: a vehicle-by-vehicle guide to calibration requirements for advanced driver assist systems (ADAS) for every 2016 make and model sold in the US. The “OEM Calibration Requirements Search” feature is available through the I-CAR Repairability Technical Support (RTS) Portal. The resources describes calibration requirements for each vehicle when repairing vehicles equipped with systems such as: • Adaptive cruise control

• Active park assist

• 360-degree camera

• Collision warning

• Collision braking

• Blind spot detection

• Lane departure warning

• Lane keep assist

• Back-up assist


Arman Gurarslan and Sean Slaven of Arslan Automotive.

The SEMA Show always brings the heat when it comes to cool cars. You’ll find plenty of hot rods and the latest high-end street machines, but there’s still plenty of room for the classics, like this ‘48 Chrysler Town & Country.

Custom is cool, but some cars, like this ‘Vette at the Cover King booth, are cool enough without mods.


From left: Bob and Nicole Kirstiuk of Advantage Auto Parts, Terry Feehan of Fix Auto Australia, Carl Brabander of Fix Auto World, Jean Charles Dupuis of Fix Auto Canada, Olivier Grouillard of Fix Auto France and Gabrielle Comtois and Stephanie Corrente of Fix Auto World.

A statement from I-CAR says this type of calibration guide is the first of its kind in the collision repair industry and will be available exclusively to current RTS Portal subscribers. The first phase of the calibration matrix will include information on up to 90 percent of 2016 model year vehicles sold in the US. In early 2017, I-CAR expects to have 100 percent coverage of 2016 US models, with a focus on 2017 model-year vehicles and ongoing tool enhancements beginning shortly thereafter. “I-CAR believes this will be a great

resource for repair professionals to leverage during the damage analysis process,” said Jason Bartanen, I-CAR Director of Industry Technical Relations, who demonstrated the tool onstage at SEMA. “If, during damage analysis/ blueprinting, an estimator or auto physical damage appraiser (APDA) identifies that a vehicle is equipped with ADAS, a quick visit to the RTS Portal will identify those conditions that will require post-repair calibration for that system. This will help in development of the repair plan, and doing this work in advance will improve cycle time.”

Gloria Mann of Collision Repair magazine and Jennie Lenk of Celette.

At the Honda booth. The OEMs were out in force for this year’s SEMA Show with eye-catching displays, including this car body painted to show the vehicle’s multi-material construction.



Cars have improved in performance and efficiency over the years, but it’s hard to argue with this level of class and elegance.

Tom McGee and Tim Morgan of Spanesi Americas.

Dave Swenson of Color Compass and Zubair Siddiqui of Crescent Industries.

Maybe American muscle is more your style. The SEMA Show has got you covered.

Pro Spot took the opportunity to honour some of the company’s top distributors at the 2016 SEMA Show. From left: Art Ewing and Ron Olsson of Pro Spot, and Russ Duncan of Color Compass.

In addition to furnishing calibration information, the search function provides links to vehicle system definitions, repair information from each automaker and additional information housed in the portal. Tom Bissonnette is a regular attendee at the SEMA Show. The former owner of Parr Auto Body and a previous Chairman of the Canadian Collision Industry Forum (CCIF), Bissonnette is still involved in the industry in numerous ways. “I went to the Collision Industry Conference meeting, just to observe and see what they’re doing,” says Bissonnette, noting that CIC is similar to CCIF, but with some differences. “The issues themselves aren’t that different, and one thing that really got me was that CIC’s stats showed only about 35 percent of body shops are actually involved in training. That means 65 percent are not! When I look at what’s 54  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

Gerry Carter of Total Sales & Marketing and Brian Caruk of Caruk & Associates.

coming down the pipe ... we’re fools if we think we can stay in the business and not improve ourselves.” Bissonnette points to numerous examples of advancing technology on display at the show as proof of this viewpoint. He noted one example while viewing a presentation by Honda at the I-CAR stage. “They were showing the new Honda Civics, the new coupe, two-door and four-door,” he says. “Every single one of these cars uses high-strength steel. Your techs need solid training just to recognize the differences between the types of metal they’re using.” For more coverage of the 2016 SEMA Show, including complete coverage of the Battle of the Builders and the Best New Products, please see the latest issue of Bodyworx Professional!

Derek Naidoo of NitroHeat.

Roger Turmel of AutoQuip.

Matt Gibson of Flat Line Finishing.




China may see fewer car owners ... but more cars on the road.

By Barett Poley


he International Bodyshop Industry Symposium (IBIS) draws together key influencers and thought leaders from across the globe to discuss the trends and factors impacting the collision repair industry both at home and abroad. Collision Repair magazine is the exclusive Canadian Media Partner for IBIS. In this issue, we are pleased to present information on China’s collision repair industry. The information was originally prepared for IBIS by David Marchand of Frost and Sullivan. In China, more and more people are giving up their

privately owned vehicles but this doesn’t necessarily mean there are expected to be fewer cars on the road. Quite the opposite is true. In a country with over 360,000 licensed auto repair shops, 129 different brands of vehicle and an expected aftermarket purchasing growth of 100 percent in the next five years, cars aren’t going away any time soon. Despite this, a record 42 percent of Chinese motorists admitted that by 2020, they may be willing to give up their personally owned vehicles, according to the IBIS report. This is compared to just 21 percent of European car owners. DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  57


A traffic jam on China’s G4 Beijing-Hong Kong-Macau Expressway in 2015. China is expected to have some 262 million vehicles on the road by 2020.

“China has been very quick to develop a comprehensive set of mobility services around taxi-hailing platforms, chauffeur services, ride sharing, car sharing, and peer to peer car sharing.”

Cellphones may be the key to these changes. Simply put, cellphone apps which serve as mobility platforms are changing the mindset of Chinese consumers. This is particularly true in the urban areas of the country where population density is much greater than can be found in equivolent North American markets. In addition to ease of transportation, the increased technological connection between transportation and cell phones provides an additional ‘ease of pay’ through apps like Alipay or WeChat pay. Getting somewhere in a densely populated area is as easy as making a phone call. By 2020, China will have around 7.5 times more motorists than the entire population of Canada. With a staggering 262 million cars on the road, in the next five years China is poised to catch up with the even the powerhouse American market. The automobile may be a big part of the ‘American Dream’, but soon it will be just as much a thing of everyday life to the people of China. The steadily increasing mobility services which parallel the likes of Lyft and Uber are more than partly responsible for this shift. With last year’s merger of two mobile app services, Kuadi and Didi, creating more than 250 million new users, this change is happening ever more quickly for China, and their ever-increasing media-transportation interactivity. 58  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM


FACTS AND FIGURES 1.357 billion


151 million


262 million






1. AMA GROUP 2. Capital SMART 3. Sheen Panel Service


$2,781 CAD



Collision Repair magazine is the exclusive Canadian Media Partner for the International Bodyshop Industry Symposium.

“A mobility revolution is under way in China, enabled by digitalisation and a unique ecosystem,” according to the report China: The Next Pioneer in New Mobility, prepared by consultancy firm Arthur D. Little. Similar advancements have been made in Canada and the US, but in China everything is closer together and more tightly packed than in any North American or European country. This leads to the unique utility of such mobilization services, which will culminate with a predicted 400 million customer userbase by 2020. As a result of this mobility revolution, even though there will be fewer privately owned vehicles, more cars are expected to be on the road. This opens up some interesting opportunities in the ecosystem for aftermarket companies. In addition to the doubtless increased rate of collisions which comes with such massive numbers, investors and businesses should consider the massive influx of aftermarket modifications to such vehicles; large fleets of vehicles will require not only a depository of OEM and aftermarket parts in case of repairs, but also mass modifications for comfort, telematics, and even powertrain and potential for autonomous operation technologies. This also provides some difficulties for manufacturers or companies that can’t keep up with the demand, according to David Marchand. “Independent aftermarket operations that are not growing by close to 27 percent every year might have difficulties to keep momentum,” he writes. There are just as many new business opportunities as there are potential pitfalls. Some Chinese insurance companies, such as Ping’an Insurance, are even offering specialized insurance for passengers of Didi’s chauffeur service. The automotive repair sector in China is robust, with more than 360,000 accredited auto shops. In China, so-called “4S” shops are the most popular type, taking up around 53 percent of the market. A 4S shop deals with vehicle sales, spare parts, service and surveying (referring to customer feedback). We suspect we’ll see the market for repair facilities to change in China, as consolidation and efficiencies of scale begin to take hold. “Fully understanding this new mobility landscape is essential for companies to position properly as mobility operators, investors, or vehicle, equipment, fanancing and service providers, and to grasp future mobility-service opportunities,” writes Marchand.







By Mike Pickford


he idea is that the work they put in today will invariably pay off tomorrow. That’s the motto of many within the industry who are choosing to champion the use of digital colour matching technology. AkzoNobel is leading the charge in promoting this relatively new form of technology. For decades the company has assisted body shops across the continent select their paint formulas by providing colour chip documents to test manually on vehiles. Back in the early 2000s the company realized that there was potential to develop a innovative new digital program to take over from the more traditional format. And so, working in place of the paint chips, AkzoNobel developed a device that is able to precisely measure and match the existing colour on vehicles. The system is two-pronged. An easy-to-handle camera is used to digitally analyze the vehicle colour, and the Automatchic Smart Search software provides shops an optimum matching colour formula database. Now well into its next generation after the recent release of the Automatchic Vision – an upgrade over the previous Automatchic 3 - AkzoNobel is pleased with the progress the program has made over the past 10 years. Speaking to Collision Repair magazine, technical consultant with AkzoNobel Brad Kruhlak noted that digital colour matching technology is gaining more of a foothold. “AkzoNobel has a long history of investing in our digital colour matching systems. We realize that as technology improves, we also need to improve and we’re delighted with the response we’ve been getting from our customers regarding these cameras,” Kruhlak said. “They’ve been steadily growing in popularity in Canada and specifically the United States over the past 12 months.” Since taking on the head painting role within his dad’s shop – Hak’s Auto Body in Yellowknife, NWT – over the past couple of years, Senad Mujcin has been a big fan of AkzoNobel’s Automatchic technology. 60  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

Senad Mujcin of Hak’s Auto Body in Yellowknife, NWT pictured using AkzoNobel’s Automatchic Vision digital colour matching system. Image by Pat Kane Photo.


“I know we’ve had this new technology and this new camera system for a while and while some of the people working in the shop were a little hesitant to use it, I kinda embraced it full on,” Mujcin told Collision Repair magazine. “Without going into too much detail, the camera has pretty much eliminated the need for all colour chip documentation at the shop.” Not satisfied with simply using the system as designed, Mujcin went one step further in creating a colour library of his own. “Every single time we go in and get a colour description I make sure to input the last eight digits of the vehicle’s VIN number into the system alongside the colour codes. That way we’ve got information on file if a car comes back to the shop,” Mujcin said.

“I think the colours that we have to spray are getting harder and harder to match and this camera is a great way to utilize technology to make things a little easier,” Darryl said. “It’s helped our business by the way of eliminating variability and helping us to be more efficient in finding tough colours or colours we don’t have a variance for.” Brother Brian added: “The camera works very well. You’ve got to keep a bit of an open mind when you’re using it, but it has definitely helped us in the way that it identifies colours quickly. It’s user friendly and it does give us lots of information every time we use it. This is the way our industry is going. It’s time to buy in and realize there are better ways of doing things out there.”

“AkzoNobel developed a device that is able to precisely measure and match the existing colour on vehicles.” Having used the system extensively over the past 18 months, Mujcin said the advantages have been there for all to see and he encourages all those in the collision repair industry to give the new technology a chance. “We love the camera up here. It’s increased our efficiency, reduced the number of colour redoes we’ve had to perform tremendously and overall helped bring our paint usage numbers down,” Mujcin said. “Once you have the right person that gets on it you really do start to see the benefits and advantages it brings.” Having also used the Automatchic Vision program quite extensively at each of their two CARSTAR locations in Red Deer over the past year, brothers Brian and Darryl Hemstreet couldn’t speak highly enough about the product.

AkzoNobel’s Kruhlak said he expects to see this recent shift towards using the new technology continue over the coming years, stating that AkzoNobel has a “definite plan” in place to completely phase out its colour chip service by 2020. “There’s definitely going to be a time that the cameras completely take over from the colour chips, we’re already preparing for it. AkzoNobel has been building this database for the camera since 1993 so we have a long history with this thing,” Kruhlak said. “I think the biggest draw about these cameras is that it takes the guess work away from painters. It’s all about saving time and saving money and we feel the digital colour matching system helps do just that.” For more information on AkzoNobel’s Automatchic series, visit




THE LATEST UPS AND DOWNS OF THE AUTO CLAIMS ECONOMY. By Jeff Sanford Good decision making comes from good information. We’re introducing a new, ongoing feature to help make sure you’ve got the information you need to drive decision making. We’ve combed through the financial reports and information for many of the large companies impacting the collision repair ecosystem. Most are publicly traded corporations, but we’ve also included financial news from other companies that are part of the automotive claims economy.


Alex Sun, Ceo of Mitchell.

Mitchell announced the closing of a $50 million senior secured first lien term loan. The loan is an add-on under Mitchell’s existing Credit Agreement. Mitchell expects to use the proceeds of the term loan to continue, “... investing in technologies that ... simplify the claim handling process across the Auto Physical Damage, Casualty and Pharmacy sectors.” According to Alex Sun, the company’s CEO, “We are thrilled that investors continue to show confidence in Mitchell. Our ability to attract capital allows us to deliver on our mission to achieve better outcomes for our clients. We look forward to expanding and enhancing our capabilities to support our clients in restoring their customers’ lives after a challenging event.”

BASF BASF continues to deal with the fallout from a major fire at a facility in Germany. But the company still posted better than expected results in Q3. The company announced Thursday that earnings before interest, tax and one-time items was 1.5 billion euros, or about $1.66 billion CAD. According to a Bloomberg report analysts had been expecting a lower profit of just 1.28 billion euros. The Citigroup analyst was off by 7 percent. The Bloomberg story quoted a Kepler Cheuvreux banker as saying, “Analysts have been too conservative [about BASF].”


Charlie Shaver, CEO of Axalta Coating Systems.

Axalta Coating Systems reported that the company beat analyst estimates by $0.01. This quarter was an important one for the company. Private equity firm, Carlyle, recently exited its stake in Axalta. According to the CEO of Axalta, Charlie Shaver, “Axalta’s broader global business climate remains sound especially considering that the majority of our operating profit is generated by the fundamentally stable refinish end-market tied to the global-collision market. We’ve seen some slowing in the more economically sensitive auto and commercial vehicle related OEM markets much of which is a continuation of demand pressure that we’ve witnessed for some quarters now and has been well noted in the trade press.” Beyond the slight slowdown at the OEMS, when it comes to the refinish business, all is good according to Shaver: “We also note that our refinish business continues to perform largely as planned and offers an ideal counterweight to any new-build cycles. While our plans to grow share in other businesses also remain in place. We are confident in our medium and longer term success from this supply discipline and look toward to updating you on our progress along the way.”


LKQ has recently acquired the 102 store Andrew Page auto parts chain in the UK


LKQ acquired a chain of stores, Andrew Page Ltd., through its subsidiary Euro Car Parts. Andrew Page distributes automotive parts in the UK. LKQ takes over 102 Andrew Page branches, a national distribution centre and corporate office. Andrew Page will continue to operate under its own brand name. LKQ is making big advances in Europe. Its relatively recent acquisition of Rhiag auto parts represented a big move on that strategy. This more recent deal builds out the new European side of the business.


Henry Buckley, CEO of Uni-Select.

UNI-SELECT Uni-Select continues to impress market watchers. The company has been on an acquisition spree of late. The solid dealmaking has allowed the Canadian company to increases its revenues, even as the underlying economy remains relatively flat. Uni-Select managed to surprise on the upside with the release of its Q3 earnings numbers. Revenues were up a very impressive 15 percent. This, “despite economic softness in Canada,” according to a press release announcing the results. “Organic sales results were below our expectations, as a result of softer economic

conditions in our Canadian business and a product line changeover in our US business,” Uni-Select CEO Henry Buckley was quoted as saying. “We remain highly focused on delivering profitable growth and extending our market share through our growth initiatives and by acquiring and integrating those select acquisitions.” The Boucherville, Quebec based auto paint and parts supplier bumped revenues to USD $318.5 million in the third quarter. This is up from $276.2 million in the same period a year ago. The company said acquisitions boosted US revenue by 25 percent to USD $202.2 million, while Canadian revenue grew by 1.9 percent to USD $116.3 million (the company reports all numbers in US dollars). Profits came in at $17.3 million or 41 cents per share, an improvement on the 37 cents per share posted in the same period last year. In the release the company noted that organic sales (those not coming from acquisitions) fell 1.3 percent in this quarter. This was due mainly to “economic challenges affecting its parts segment.” Last year the company sold its US parts distributor to a company affiliated with Wall Street legend Carl Icahn.

On the global level, AkzoNobel reported a 1 percent rise in third-quarter earnings. The company announced that the, “... market environment remained uncertain with challenging conditions in several countries and segments.” The Amsterdam-based company said that the profit rise was, “... mainly due to improvement initiatives and lower costs, although these were partly offset by adverse currency effects ...” For the quarter ended June 30, the company said adjusted earnings (stripping out exceptional and other one-off items) rose to 442 million euros from EUR436 million a year earlier. Overall, revenue slipped a bit, falling from EUR 3.6 billion to EUR 3.76 billion. The board declared a dividend of EUR 0.37 a share, up 6 percent from the same period last year.

BOYD GROUP INCOME FUND The Winnipeg-based Boyd Group has been on something of an expansion drive in 2016, acquiring at least 41 facilities since the start of the year. Boyd has opened three new locations, among others—the cash it is generating is appreciated by owners of the trust units. Boyd Group Income Fund is the trading security of the Boyd Group. Income funds are slightly different than the stocks of corporations. They come under a different set of corporate laws, and so can do different tax things that standard companies registered as corporations cannot. Basically, income can be flowed through to the owner of the units from the company with lower taxes. As Boyd continues to add stores, the cash it is generating is no doubt appreciated by owners of the trust units. The Jefferies Group released a report on Boyd on October 18 that set a target price of between $88 and $100 CAD.


John G. Morikis, President and CEO of Sherwin-Williams.

Sherwin-Williams stock has underperformed a bit of late, dropping 2.96 percent over the last several months, but analysts say they expect an almost 10 percent increase in the share to a profit of $4.33 a share. That would be a big increase over last year’s profit of $3.97 per share. Someone is betting earnings will come in even higher than analysts expect. Of the 15 analysts covering Sherwin-Williams, nine rate it a “Buy”, zero rate it as a “Sell” and six rate it a “Hold”. That is, 60 percent of analysts have a positive rating on the stock. RBC Capital Markets has an “Outperform” rating on SHW. Collision Repair magazine reported in March 2016 that Sherwin-Williams had struck a deal

to acquire Valspar. Stock market regulators have recently required Sherwin-Williams and Valspar to officially comment on what appeared to be “excessive market speculation” following on rumours that parts of each company may have to be divested for regulators to allow the deal to go through. Both companies stated they “continue to believe that no or minimal divestitures should be required to complete the transaction.” The companies expect the deal to close by the end of Q1 of 2017. John G. Morikis, President and CEO of Sherwin-Williams Company, said of the acquisition, “Valspar is an excellent strategic fit with Sherwin-Williams. The combination expands our brand portfolio and customer relationships in North America.” DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  65


Ontario’s new curriculum includes PDR, electronics and more


he repairs and component replacement of motor vehicles has evolved and so have the ways in which we teach those skills to apprentices. The world of automotive repair has come a long way in the last 150 years. Technological advances, safer vehicle construction and better fuel efficiency are just some of the accepted standards in the industry. Mike Kennelly is a Program Coordinator for auto body apprenticeship programs at Fanshawe College in London, Ont. He was also a member of the working group that recently updated the curriculum standard for the auto body and collision damage repairer trade.

He says that the updated curriculum reflects what shops are working on during day-to-day operations. “The updates are a crucial step forward for skills growth and development for apprentices, and to equip them with the foundations they will need to be on top of repairs and the technology they encounter daily,” Kennelly says. Kennelly adds that today’s vehicles are built with many types of different materials, like advanced high-strength steel, structural aluminum stampings and extrusions, magnesium reinforced panels, plastics and composites—all of which require individual repair considerations and procedures based on how they are utilized within the vehicle.

“The updates are a crucial step forward for skills growth and development for apprentices.” - Mike Kennelly.” Not knowing how to properly handle the varying types of materials during the construction or repair process could be deadly. “Simply applying the incorrect amount of heat to one location or layer of unfamiliar material could be detrimental to the structural integrity of that vehicle in a subsequent collision causing injury or death,” he warns. Other changes include added hours to level 1 and 2 of applied mechanical, to train on the collision safety and convenience systems. New additions include fundamentals of paintless dent repair and components of electronic safety and convenience systems, such as adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, frontal crash prevention, lane departure warning and assist. The subject of shielded metal arc welding – stick welding was removed. The updated curriculum standard can be found on the Ontario College of Trades’ website at A student at Fanshawe College practices painting techniques. The curriculum standards for Ontario’s autobody college programs have recently been updated.



New Brunswick Community College to invest in new trades facility The Saint John campus of New Brunswick Community College. The school has announced it will build a multi-function space for the autobody repair, automotive service, steel fabrication and welding programs.

New Brunswick Community College has been awarded funding to build a new, stateof-the-art trades facility at the school’s campus in Saint John. Plans include multifunctional spaces for the school’s autobody repair, automotive service, steel fabrication and welding programs. Provincial and federal governments are investing a total of $15.89 million for the new facility. The funding is being provided though the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund. “By working with the Trudeau government, we are getting things done to advance New Brunswickers priorities of economic

growth, education and health care,” said Premier Brian Gallant. “This project will allow NBCC in Saint John to strengthen its trade courses. We must value trades as they are crucial for our economy.” An official statement says the new facility will improve the scale and quality of the trades programs at the Saint John campus. The investment will also help the college build multi-functional spaces to provide flexibility for future classroom and shop programming needs. The new building will be designed to allow for future expansion and additions. The provincial government will invest

$8.67 million, while the federal government will provide $7.22 million. Through the fund, the federal government will provide $49.3 million, the provincial government will invest $35.2 million, and universities will contribute $14.1 million, in several projects, which will result in a total of $98.6 million being spent on university and college infrastructure in New Brunswick. It is expected that additional investments will bring the total amount received by colleges and universities in New Brunswick to $111 million. “NBCC makes a significant contribution to New Brunswick’s socio-economic prosperity,” said Susan Murchison, Chair of the NBCC board of governors. “Aging infrastructure is a challenge to maintaining and growing that contribution. This investment in a new trades facility at our Saint John campus will ensure that NBCC can continue to play an important role in developing a highlyskilled workforce here in New Brunswick.” For more information, please visit

AMi Training Provider Directory cracks 120 participants and continues to grow The Automotive Management Institute (AMi) has announced it currently has over 120 training providers in its Training Provider Directory. AMi launched the directory in June as part of the launch of the “Next Generation of AMi.” “The Training Provider Directory is one example of AMi acting upon its core belief that knowledge equals competitiveness and learning is the only source of a sustainable competitive advantage,” said AMi President Jeff Peevy. “We want to do all we can to facilitate and maximize learning within our industry”. A statement from AMi says the searchable directory has experienced tremendous support and activity from those searching for training resources and training providers ensuring their programs’ industry exposure. The Training Provider Directory provides a searchable database of management and technical training for both collision repair and mechanical service repair segments. AMi encourages training providers and instructors to participate by completing the “Training Provider Form” at AMi has also developed the AMi Learning Foundation Program to encourage donations from industry businesses and individuals. “The launch of the ‘Next Generation of AMi,’ represents a significant milestone for our industry’s owners and managers.

Individuals can complete coursework, take post-course exams, view and print transcripts, view completed and suggested courses and enroll in online courses,” said Sheri Hamilton, AMi Board of Trustee Chair. “All of this is in addition to receiving AMi credit from classroom training industry-wide.” A statement from AMi says the organization has invested significant financial resources in online training courses to ensure management courses are available and affordable. The online catalogue offers students more than 100 courses in a wide-variety of topics. DECEMBER 2016  COLLISION REPAIR  67




An artist’s illustration produced by the Rand Corporation in the 1950s, showing what autonomous vehicles might look like. We don’t have this level of technology yet, and some researchers don’t think we’ll have it in the next five years.


OPTIMISTIC? Researchers don’t think cars will be fully autonomous by


By Jeff Sanford and Mike Davey


t seems like there are new reports every week of advances in selfdriving vehicles. We’re inching ever closer, but there are some people who believe that autonomous vehicles (AVs) will always be restricted to operating in certain areas. BMW, Ford, and Uber have all issued statements saying they plan to have “fully autonomous” cars ready to drive themselves on the road in 2021. However, some of the researchers actually working on AVs don’t think those vehicles will be able to drive everywhere without human input.

Rather, the consensus seems to be that those companies will meet those targets by creating small fleets of vehicles that are limited to certain areas or conditions. Steven Shladover is a researcher with the University of California who has been working on AVs and transportation infrastructure projects for over 20 years. He says both media and members of the public are overinterpreting statements that are less specific than they appear at first glance. “Probably what Ford would do to meet their 2021 milestone is have something that


provides low-speed taxi service limited to certain roads—and don’t expect it to come in the rain,” says Shladover. In other words, some level of autonomy will likely be available by then. Anyone who owns a Tesla with the Autopilot feature knows that some level is available now. What many people seem to be expecting is Level 5 autonomy (for more on this, please see “Levels of Autonomy on page 71”). According to Shladover, that isn’t what they’re going to get. “It ain’t going to be five years,” he says. “The hype has gotten totally out of sync with reality.”


Alain Kornhauser is another researcher with some serious chops in the AV world. He’s currently Princeton’s Professor of Operations Research & Financial Engineering, director of the university’s transportation program and the faculty advisor for Princeton Autonomous Vehicle Engineering (PAVE). He doesn’t think 2021 will see Level 5 autonomy either. “By then we may be able to define a sort of fenced region of space where we can let cars out without a driver,” he says. “The challenge will be making that fenced-in area large enough so that it provides a valuable service.” The software and sensors in today’s AVs are incredibly advanced, but they’ve been in development for less than a century. The sensors and wetware in your own skull has been in development for millions of years. Computers are very fast and can track many different things at once ... and they still make mistakes no human being would ever make. Tesla knows this all too well. No human being would have mistaken a large white truck for a clear sky, but that’s exactly what the company’s Autopilot software did earlier this year. The crash ended up killing the driver and Tesla has since disabled the Autopilot software on its new cars. The company is still including the software, but it’s turned off. Self-driving cars typically rely on a suite of sensors to figure out the world around them. The big one is usually LIDAR, essentially a laser-based form of radar that relies on invisible beams of light instead of radio signals. Many AVs that use LIDAR are relying on a product from a Silicon Valley based company called Velodyne. The device captures 2.2 million data points in its field of view each second and can pinpoint the location of objects up to 120 metres away with incredible accuracy. There are two problems with this tech, though. First, it weighs about 13 kg and it costs upwards of $80,000 USD. Recent reports indicate that cheaper LIDAR is on the way. Infineon Technologies, a German company, says it can deliver LIDAR for use in fully autonomous driving over the next five years for just $25. That may be unrealistic, but a number of other companies have promised similar technology in the near future

Steven Shladover of the University of California doesn’t think we’ll have fully autonomous vehicles by 2021.

for price points ranging from $100 up to $500 per unit. Assuming those plans actually come to fruition, there will still be a question of whether or not they can deal well with rain and snow. This has long been a problem for autonomous vehicles and there doesn’t appear to be an easy solution on the horizon. So, are autonomous vehicles coming to our roads? The answer would appear to be a definite yes ... but not by 2021.

Levels of Autonomy SAE International, formerly known as the Society of Automotive Engineers, published a classification system in 2014 that defined six different levels of automotive automation. The system is based on the amount of driver intervention and attentiveness required, rather than the vehicle’s capabilities, although these are very closely related. Level 0: Automated system has no vehicle control, but may issue warnings. Level 1: Driver must be ready to take control at any time. Automated system may include features such as Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Parking Assistance with automated steering, and Lane Keeping Assistance (LKA) Type II in any combination. Level 2: The driver is obliged to detect objects and events and respond if the automated system fails to respond properly. The automated system executes accelerating, braking, and steering. The automated system can deactivate immediately upon takeover by the driver. Level 3: Within known, limited environments (such as freeways), the driver can safely turn their attention away from driving tasks. Level 4: The automated system can control the vehicle in all but a few environments such as severe weather. The driver must enable the automated system only when it is safe to do so. When enabled, driver attention is not required.

Alain Kornhauser, faculty advisor for Princeton Autonomous Vehicle Engineering (PAVE). He says that, by 2021, we may be able to let AVs out in a sort of ‘fenced region.’

Level 5: Other than setting the destination and starting the system, no human intervention is required. The automatic system can drive to any location where it is legal to drive.


Ontario towers must hold valid Commercial Vehicle Operator’s Registration by Jan. 1 The Ontario Ministry of Transportation has pressed forward with its plans to redefine tow trucks as ‘commercial motor vehicles’ in the Highway Traffic Act in a move that is likely to affect all those in the towing industry over the coming months. Assistant Deputy Minister Heidi Francis revealed all tow truck operators will be required to hold a valid Commercial Vehicle Operator’s Registration (CVOR) certificate by the new year. According to a letter distributed to towers across the province, one CVOR certificate will be required for all tow trucks within an operator’s fleet, with a copy of the permit to be carried in the vehicle at all times. “I encourage operators that do not already hold a valid CVOR certificate to apply as soon as possible to allow sufficient time to complete the required steps to ensure they are in compliance by Jan. 1, 2017,” Francis wrote. The new certificate doesn’t come cheap. Operators are required to pay a $250 registration fee when submitting their CVOR application. Once the application has been received, the MTO will send out a letter of acknowledgement informing operators on how they should proceed.

Ontario-based operators will be required to pass a CVOR written test in person at a DriveTest centre prior to the certificate being issued. According to Francis, the MTO will consult with industry stakeholders during the development of additional regulations detailing the specific requirements for tow trucks and operators. For more information about CVOR, applying for a CVOR certificate and the CVOR written test, visit

Montreal’s Inspector General accuses three towing firms of collusion Three towing companies operating in the city of Montreal have been accused of colluding to win lucrative city contracts to remove parked cars during snow clearing operations. Montreal’s Inspector General, Denis Gallant, says the companies colluded on a regular basis to win the contracts. The accusations were made in a report released by the Inspector General’s office. It seems possible that the operators of the companies did not know that what they were doing was illegal. According to Gallant, the owners openly shared the details of their practices with investigators from his department, apparently not realizing that they were admitting to collusion. “It is obvious the entrepreneurs did not understand yet what is involved in collusion,

despite the fact several reports have been published by the inspector general on the subject,” the report reads. According to the report, the companies engaged in collusive pratices by discussing whether or not to bid on contracts, the number of trucks to include and price. According to a report in the Montreal Gazette, two of the operators named in the report told investigators “they would speak to each other about how much to bid and how many tow trucks they would use.” In addition, the report alleges that some companies would not bid in certain sectors, with the understanding that those contracts “belonged” to other companies. Gallant’s office has recommended that any current contracts with the named companies

be cancelled, and the towing companies barred from bidding on similar contracts for five years. The report identifies the owners of the towing companies as Jean-Marc Lelièvre, President of Remorquage Taz, Réal Tourigny, president of Auto Cam 2000 and Steve Lenfesty, President of Remorquage Mobile. The report is availabe online at


CONTENTS Recycling News....................75 - 79

Tire Take Back fundraising cracks $1 million

Representatives of OARA, OFA, OTS, the Sunshine Foundation, Early’s Auto Parts and the city of Alliston gather for the official cheque presentation at Early’s Auto Parts.

It’s been another successful year for Tire Take Back. This year, the tire recycling blitz collected 64,623 tires to raise $117,998 in support of the Sunshine Foundation of Canada. Early’s Auto Parts in Alliston, Ontario came out on top, collecting 15,346 tires, resulting in $21,491 of the total funds raised for The Sunshine Foundation of Canada. “We cont inue to be a ma zed at t he success of t his prog ra m,” sa id Steve Fletcher, Executive Director of OARA. “ T he ef for ts ou r members put i n to collecting these tires, and the support our tire hauling partners provide, keep the environment clean, and help The Sunshine Foundation continue to do their good work.” The program is now in its seventh year

and has raised more than $1 million to support The Sunshine Foundation of Canada. The event is organized by Ontario Au t o m o t i ve R e c yc l e r s A s s o c i a t i on (OARA) and Ontario Tire Stewardship (OT S), i n a s s oc iat ion w it h Ont a r io Federation of Agriculture (OFA). To date, Tire Take Back has collected 458,185 tires and raised $1,060,306. “We are overwhelmed with the support we’ve received from OARA, OTS, and OFA and their dedication to reaching this incredible million dollar milestone,” says Nancy Sutherland, CEO for The Sunshine Foundation of Canada. “Tire Take Back is grassroots fundraising at its best with communities across the province coming together to make dreams come true for our Sunshine kids.” Continued on page 76.

COULD RECYCLERS SELL ELECTRONICS AS PARTS INSTEAD OF SCRAP? Electronic components are everywhere in modern vehicles, and buying new ones is often extremely expensive. Could automotive recyclers sell these components, not as scrap, but as parts? John Norris thinks so. He administers the Vehicle Security Professional (VSP) program, a data exchange system designed to allow auto professionals to gain access to vehicle specific security information. He believes that many recyclers could realize more profits from electronics. “Many recyclers, when you visit them, have shelves or bins full of control modules, ECMs, even immobilizers, sitting and waiting for scrap sale,” he says. “What if recyclers decided that they wanted to match up some of those electronic modules to other cars for customers?” VSP has been running since 2012 through the Canadian Automotive Service Information Standard (CASIS) agreement. VSP can share security information—like keycodes, immobilizer resets and so on— with accredited professionals who are program members. “What is the only thing holding back recyclers was obtaining the security codes and programming that would allow them, or the tech, the opportunity to reprogram the module to a different vehicle? Those codes have been available for most Canadian vehicles for four years, but most recyclers don’t take advantage of it,” Norris says. Recyclers may want to look into the possibilities offered by this program. For more information, please visit DECEMBER 2016 COLLISION REPAIR  75


Continued from page 75.

Each year, the Tire Take Back event, through the donation of all tire collection fees, helps children within Sunshine’s Ontario net work live out once-in-alifetime experiences that may otherwise not have been possible, like meeting their heroes, or taking dream vacations. F o r S h a n n on Mc C au l e y a n d h e r daughter Abby, their family’s trip to Disney World wa s not h i ng shor t of spectacular. “Travelling to Disney World was t he most wonder f u l ex perience for Abby and our family and we are so grateful to the Sunshine Foundation for making this dream possible!! Abby was able to take a break from physio and medical appointments to explore the magical world of Disney. She experienced everything from a princess make-over to meeting her favorite characters. It was definitely a week to remember and one that she speaks of fondly. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!!” For more information on Tire Take Back, please visit


The official cheque presentation to the Sunshine Foundation. To date, Tire Take Back has raised more than $1 million.


New project to demonstrate viability of plastics recycling No matter the industry, plastics are some of the most recycled materials in the world. A new project being spearheaded by SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association promises to demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of recycling plastic auto parts. “We want to make sure that our members see the business benefit of recycling automotive plastics,” said Kim Holmes, Senior Director of Recycling and Diversion at SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association. “The way to get real buy-in is to have concrete data that builds the business case for these recovery models.” Organizations partnering with SPI to make this program a reality include the Automotive Recyclers Association (ARA) in the US and Automotive Recyclers of Canada (ARC) and the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) here in Canada, as well as a number of independent plastics and automotive recyclers. The goal of the ELV Recycling Demonstration Project is to develop a method of collection and recovery of Polypropylene (PP) and Thermoplastic Olefin (TPO) auto parts. The average lifespan of a vehicle is estimated to be about 11.5 years, and increasingly those vehicles are comprised of more and more plastics. Factors like using plastic to lighten the weight of vehicles helps meet heightened Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, a major concern for automakers, and the superior design freedom afforded by plastics are driving the increased use of plastics in new vehicle design. Recovery of plastic components before shredding is largely driven by the resale market, but some recovery for mechanical recycling is also occurring. Another goal of the ELV Recycling Demonstration Project is to gather information to better guide design for recycling opportunities that can help inform future automotive design and recovery of plastics. Once gathered and analyzed, the project data and best management practices will be shared broadly with the automotive and plastic recycling industries. The goal is to predict

trends in demand for recycled materials, so recyclers can invest in processing capacity with greater confidence. “As plastics continue to be a material of choice for vehicles due to their weight differences and other energy-efficient

benefits, we are thrilled to play a leading role with SPI in a program and will continue to explore the benefits of recycling plastic automotive parts,” said Michael E. Wilson, CEO of the Automotive Recyclers Association.



Impact Auto Auctions’ new Edmonton facility is the largest in Canada Impact Auto Auctions welcomed more than 250 auto industry professionals and local dignitaries to the grand opening of its new Edmonton auto salvage auction facility. Located at 26419 Twp. Road 525A in Acheson, Alberta, the facility is the largest of its kind in Canada. It features 47 acres of vehicle storage, and a 12,500 sq. ft. office, auction and inspection building. “Today we continue our expansion in northern Alberta with the official opening of our largest facility to date,” said Terry Daniels, Impact’s Managing Director while officially opening the facility. “We are extremely excited about delivering an enhanced service experience to our customers in this market, and look forward to continuing our support of the Greater Edmonton business community and our local community partners for many years to come.” Impact Edmonton features a large buyer reception and service area, a series of dedicated appraisal offices, and Impact’s dual

auction lane configuration. According to Impact, the set-up saves buyers time by enabling them to safely view multiple auction vehicles at once. The new site also increases the company’s vehicle capacity in the market by 50 percent, enabling Impact to consolidate its Greater Edmonton operations into a single facility. “On behalf of Parkland County Council, we are pleased to welcome Impact Auto Auctions to Acheson,” said Mayor Rod Shaigec. “Acheson is a growing industrial hub just west of Edmonton and home to a variety of growing businesses. We’re looking forward to building a great relationship with Impact and working together to enhance the local economy.” As part of the grand opening celebrations, Impact donated $10,000 t o t h e l o c a l C a n a d i a n R e d C ro s s which continues to support families


Celebrating the grand opening of Impact Edmonton. From left: Terry Daniels (Managing Director, Impact Auto Auctions), Councillor Jackie McCuaig, (Division 2, Parkland County), Dave Tenk (Branch Manager, Impact Edmonton), Councillor Tracey Melnyk (Division 6, Parkland County) and Deputy Mayor John McNab (Parkland County).

and individuals recovering from the Fort McMurray wildfires. Over the summer, Impact employees also worked with local authorities to remove more than 1,000 vehicles in the region, an essential first step in beginning the cleanup and rebuilding effort in the community. For more information, please visit


Ontario government to enforce new end-of-life vehicle site regulations The Ontario government announced in September that it would give sites that manage end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) until the end of the month to comply with new provincial regulations. Back in March, the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change ushered in changes to its registration policy for all facilities that manage ELVs throughout the province. Following a five-month grace period, the ministry started to crack down and gave sites until September 30 to comply with the new guidelines. The province considers the management of ELVs to include collecting, handling, storing, processing or disposing of vehicles and has presented sites with two registration options – enlist their site on the Environmental Activity and Sector Registry (EASR) or obtain an Environmental Compliance Approval (ECA). The EASR is an online self-registration system. To register, sites must meet the eligibility criteria set out in Ontario Regulation 85/16. Click here for more information on the criteria. All sites managing ELVs must meet operational requirements, including

depollution, spills prevention, proper waste storage, training, record-keeping and mitigating air/noise emissions. Should a site not meet the EASR criteria they are required to obtain an ECA, which is a site-specific system that involved a more complex application process. This process requires site managers to submit documents to the ministry detailing information about their business and activities. There is one exception to the new rule – in the event that a site meets the EASR eligibility criteria and already has an existing ECA, it will have until March 31, 2018 to enlist itself on t he new reg ist r y. Beg inning October 1 t he minist r y began its follow-up w it h non-registered sites and cou ld potentially take enforcement action against sites such as orders, investigations and prosecutions. If you have a ny questions relating to t he new requirements, contact t he Environmental Approvals Access and Service Integration Branch by calling 1-800-461-6260 or emailing eaasibgen@

Paul D’Adamo named keynotes speaker for upcoming OARA Conference T he Ont a r io Automot ive Rec yclers Association (OARA) has announced that Paul D’Adamo from Recycling Growth has been named as the keynote speaker for the 2017 OARA Convention, taking place March 30 and April 1 at Hilton Toronto/Markham Suites Conference Centre in Markham, Ontario. D’Adamo has been in the automotive recycling business for 27 years as an owner at Bill’s Auto Parts in Cumberland, Rhode Island. The company was sold to Pick’n Pull in 2013 and he stayed on as

New England Regional Manager for PNP. In addition,he and his wife Lynn are the owners of Recycling Growth, a consulting, coaching and training company that serves the auto recycling industry. D’Adamo will provide two seminars over the Friday and Saturday at the event. The first, “Is it time for the Heimlich Maneuver on your inventory?” takes a look at efficiencies that can eliminate bottlenecks. The second is “Don’t feed the monkey: a boot camp for owners, ma na gers a nd key employees.” T he

seminar encourages attendees to spend some time to take stock in themselves and identify which “monkeys” they are carrying and which ones are dragging them down. OARA has also announced that it is planning several Roundtable discussions for owners and staff that D’Adamo will help to facilitate. For more information on the 2017 OARA Conference and Exposition, please visit



TOWNHALL Industry collaboration yields positive results.

By David Gold


n the past year our industry has seen more changes than in any previous. This is in part because of technological advances, but also in the way we have and will do business going forward. Automotive enhancements such as collision avoidance and autonomous driving features are the new norms. Simultaneous with all of this, however, is the way in which collision repairers and parts providers currently utilize advanced software programs for the parts procurement process. As we deal with these changes, all stakeholders need to come together to address the trends and how they affect us. Many of the initiatives in play at this time are driven by the insurance companies’ desire for information they can use to make the most appropriate decisions for their business. Innovative platforms are being used to facilitate their requirements. Even as the parts procurement

Having said that, the level of collaboration necessary for this solution to work requires both parties to be in sync. The ultimate goal is to make sure that we can execute this new part procurement process in a seamless fashion. Large and small auto recyclers are united in this scenario, as we as an industry need to do everything we can to teach our customers the unique descriptions, abbreviations and industry standard codes that we use. Up until the last few years, how we have described our parts was not crucial for our customers as our salespeople could explain them verbally. I envision a situation where local recyclers become more than just parts providers for the repair facility. Our relationship should be more akin to business partners. The new advancements with the estimating

ALL STAKEHOLDERS NEED TO COME TOGETHER TO ADDRESS THE TRENDS AND HOW THEY AFFECT US. model changes to an electronic format, there is still a strong need for all sectors to collaborate. E-commerce is still in its infancy for automotive recyclers. It’s not that we don’t want to sell parts electronically, but rather due to circumstances of our parts including variables such as “part inclusions” (what OEMs numbers make up a recycled part assembly, for example) that make it more challenging for the estimating systems to integrate. Since two of the major estimating systems in North America also each own respective major auto recycling inventory management and pointof-sale systems, it’s likely just a matter of time before repairers will procure all parts electronically as opposed to making some phone calls. There are already pilots in the marketplace in the US where automotive recyclers are teaching their preferred collision repair centres to order the parts right from their estimating system. This is a big win for the shop in terms of time and a big win for the recycler in terms of sales. We’re all for this type of integration. 80  COLLISION REPAIR  COLLISIONREPAIRMAG.COM

systems also come with real part reporting metrics that would otherwise be impossible to attain. We will now have real data as to when a part was ordered and shipped, so cycle times can be accurately measured. We will also have return rate information fully documented and transparent. This keeps everything above board, and we can have meaningful discussions. Ultimately, everyone wants to see innovation. Recyclers understand our role and want to be great business partners to assist our customers in repairing more vehicles. If all stakeholders can be inspired to face trends and challenges together, it would go a long way to furthering the industry and making things better for all. David Gold of Standard Auto Wreckers is a founding member of Fenix Parts and holds the title of President for Canadian Operations. Locations in Canada include Toronto, Port Hope and Ottawa. He can be reached at 416-286-8686.




3M...................................................4 AADCO..........................................79 AkzoNobel.....................................83 ARSLAN .........................................9 Assured Automotive.....................61 Auto Quip........................................8 Automotive Recyclers of Canada...77 Axalta......................................84, 59 BASF...............................................7 Boston Auto Wreckers..................79 Canadian Hail Repair....................56 Car-O-Liner...................................16 74 Carcone’s Auto Recycling............76 Cardinal Couriers.......................... 19 CARSTAR Canada........................63 Collision 360.................................50 Color Compass.............................33 DV Systems...................................45 Dominion Sure Seal......................30 EMM International......................... 10 Fix Auto Canada...........................42 Formula Honda.............................35 Garmat..........................................23 Hollander.......................................81 Impact Auto..................................36 Island Clean Air............................49 Kia Canada...................................21 Krown............................................20 Martech......................................... 12 Micazen.........................................27 Mitchell International...............68,69 Monidex........................................46 Ontario College of Trades............ 18 Polyvance......................................55 PPG Canada............................... 2,3 Pro Spot International.................. 13 QRP Canada.................................53 Spanesi Americas......................... 15 Stark Auto Sales...........................72 Steck Manufacturing....................24 Thorold Auto Parts.......................78 Titanium Tools & Equipment........ 14 Valspar Refinish............................ 17 Wurth Canada.............................. 29

Does the conventional wisdom have it wrong? By Jeff Sanford


he North American auto industry is in long-term decline, according to a number of sources. To listen to the experts the automotive world is a dismal place indeed. But take a minute and consider how the real world is actually playing out here in 2016. Actual events suggest these trends are unfolding in a way that is different from the predictions of experts. First off, the North American auto industry is coming off a year of record sales. Sales have slowed a bit this year, but only after a year in which the auto industry sold more vehicles than ever. What about the coming wave of anticollision technology? The hype around automated vehicles has been piling up deeply. But is the hype peaking? Apple and Google recently announced retreats from plans to create their own cars. Turns out making an automobile is a really tough business, and so the tech companies have indicated they’ve shifted strategy toward creating the tech used in cars, but will not manufacture their own. As insurance expert Sean Carey recently put it in a public address: “Don’t get lost in the whole AV thing. That’s 2020, 2030, 2040.” As it is, the story has got ahead of reality. Although there are more cameras and sensors on cars today, the most recent numbers from the US Department of Transportation show a 10.4 percent increase in road fatalities over the first six months of 2016. The recent spike in fatal collisions is the largest single-year one since the 1960s. Experts are said to be shocked by the reversal in the longterm trend here. “Suddenly, we’re losing ground,” Mark Rosekind, Administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), was recently quoted as saying. A recent report in a British Columbia paper noted a similar trend in that province where the number of crashes has “spiked by 15 percent in just two years,”


from 260,000 in 2013 to 300,000 in 2015. In both of these cases, the record number of cars on the road is one likely cause. In the case of ICBC, the spiking number of claims is also driven by the new complexity of cars. According to the report in The Province, ICBC’s vehicle-repair costs soared by $200 million last year to $1.36 billion. The blame was dumped on higher repair bills. “Drivers love the new technology, safety features and modern conveniences—but they come with a cost,” ICBC Chairman Barry Penner was quoted as saying. The report quoted some stats, including those for a typical Camry with a shattered windshield. In 2005 that took about three hours to repair and cost $620. By 2015 that same windshield replacement now cost $850 as well as $1,400 for the crash-avoidance camera embedded in the windshield. That’s a 260 percent increase in 10 years! Cameras and sensors are avoiding some accidents, but when accidents do happen, they’re a lot more expensive to fix. As Carey recently put it, “the shops will still make their money” even as the overall number of accidents decline. Insurers may be the ones that have to worry. There is a case to be made that collision repair shops will continue to exist as always, only operating at more sophisticated levels. While the number of accidents will decline by 29 percent by 2020, over that time accident severity in terms of cost will increase similarly. According to Carey, “By 2040, we’ll probably be in the full autonomy stage, with crash frequency down by 80 percent but severity up 250 percent.” Sounds like the big trends are still favourable. Jeff Sanford is the Staff Writer for Collision Repair magazine. He can be reached at 905-370-0101 or at jeff@

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