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Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #135 - September 6 - 12, 2019

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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest

September 13 · Issue #135 · View online
Weekly highlights of the events that impact supply chain risk within the automotive industry.

CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT
Following a recent scandal regarding overpayment, Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa has resigned from the automaker. Saikawa’s resignation finds the automaker searching for its third CEO in as many years.
Nissan VP Christina Murray, who is in charge of the internal probe of the Carlos Ghosn scandal, has abruptly resigned. The reason for her resignation is unknown at this time.
Kia has named former Infiniti design director Karim Habib as its new Senior VP and Head of the Kia Design Center in Namyang, South Korea. Habib will be responsible for the design of Kia vehicles and help determine the future design strategy and direction of the Kia brand.
LABOR DISPUTE
The Center for Automotive Research reviews the main economic issues in the 2019 UAW-Detroit Three negotiations. The contracts expire at midnight on September 14, 2019.
At a rally in Windsor yesterday, Unifor president Jerry Dias said that the only way workers would end their strike at the Nemak facility is if the supplier agrees to keep the plant operational until the current agreement expires in 2022. Dias added, “Nemak, if you don’t like it, you can kiss my union ass!”. Nemak maintains that they have the right to cease operations under the existing agreement.
LITIGATION
NHTSA is investigating complaints that the Nissan Rogue’s safety system is engaging the emergency braking system without an obstruction ahead.
GM is recalling over 3.4m pickup trucks and SUVs to fix a brake problem that can increase stopping distance and the risk of a crash. The recall covers the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra 1500 pickups from the 2014-18 model years, Cadillac Escalades from the 2015-17 model years, and the 2015-18 GMC Yukon, Chevy Suburban and Tahoe.
DISASTER
The Port of Brunswick, south of Savannah, Georgia, has accepted its first ship after The Golden Ray capsized in the main channel earlier in the week. The Port of Brunswick is the second-busiest automobile port in the country moving 613k in the past year.
PLANT EXPANSION
Safety product manufacturer Neaton Auto Products is investing $15m to expand its plant 25 miles west of Dayton, Ohio. The expansion will add 70 new jobs.
Honda supplier Tigerpoly is investing $10.7m into expanding its plant in Grove City, Ohio. The expansion will grow the facility by 105,000sf and add about 40 jobs.
Japanese body frame manufacturer Jefferson Industries will invest $10.8m into expanding its plant in West Jefferson, Ohio. The expansion will increase the building size by 77,000sf and add 150 jobs.
Adient will add jobs to expand production at its Tillsonburg, Ontario plant. The plant produces polyurethane seating foam used in a new product line for the Ford F-150.
Topre America will expand its Springfield, Ohio plant. After the expansion, the stamping and assembly facility will total 393.5k sf. The plant supplies Honda, Nissan, and Toyota.
PLANT OPENING
Motherson Sumi Systems Ltd will open a factory in the Rakez Al Hamra Industrial Zone in the United Arab Emirates. The 226k sf facility will produce wiring harnesses, rearview mirrors, and injection molded parts. The plant will open by July 2020.
Daimler will buy lithium-ion battery cells from Chinese-American supplier Farasis Energy. Farasis is currently building a plant in east Germany to help Mercedes-Benz ramp up its EV production.
PRODUCTION DECREASE
BMW’s Mini plant in Oxford, England anticipates cutting production and jobs at its Cowley factory in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
REGULATION
The U.S. Justice Department has started an investigation into whether California’s recent agreement with automakers on emissions standards violated antitrust laws.
Despite stating the EPA is still committed to easing the Obama administration fuel-efficiency standards, the final 2020 standards may be more stringent than initially recommended. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said, “it’s safe to say our final will not look exactly like the way we proposed it.”
The U.S. will delay a 5% increase in tariffs on Chinese goods, set to begin on October 1, ahead of talks.
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