Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #131 - August 9 - 15, 2019
CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT
Audi of America has named current Volkswagen Group Canada CEO Daniel Weissland as its new CEO to start on Sept. 1. Weissland replaces former CEO Mark Del Rossos who abruptly resigned four months ago.
Acting administrator for the NHTSA, Heidi King, is resigning from her position effective Aug. 31. She will be replaced by US DOT Deputy General Counsel James Owens.
SGL Group's CEO, Jürgen Köhler, has resigned, warning profits will fall short of the forecast affirmed last week. The German carbon fiber maker, supplying BMW and VW is considering restructuring.
Despite saying earlier that the third shift at its Windsor plant would end by Sept. 30, FCA Canada has extended the shift's run "until at least the end of 2019." Worker's union Unifor said "...every one of these extensions provides us more opportunities to...maintain our third shift and current workforce for the future."
Detroit Free Press: "Securing key elements in talks with Ford would give union leaders the freedom to get tough with GM."
Ford issued a safety recall for 14k 2020 Explorer and Lincoln Aviators. The manual park release level may be inadvertently activated, causing the vehicle to roll. Additionally, the vehicles may be in a factory mode, where warning alerts and gear positions are not displayed.
Ford is also recalling over 108,000 midsize cars over a defect that could cause seatbelts to fail in a crash. The recall covers certain Ford Fusion and Lincoln MKZ vehicles from 2015.
The federal investigation into misappropriated funds for UAW worker training is widening as investigators are zeroing in on retired UAW aide Mike Grimes. He is being charged with wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering for allegedly receiving $1.99m in kickbacks.
MERGERS, VENTURES, ACQUISITIONS
Motus Integrated Technologies is buying insulation maker Janesville Fiber Solutions for $84m. The deal is subject to closing conditions and is expected to close in the third quarter.
Austrian sensor supplier, AMS, has made a $4.1b offer to takeover Osram.
The joint venture, Dongfeng Peugeot Citroen Automobiles, will close one plant and sell another in Wuhan. The company will layoff half of its 8,000 employees. "We're just a whisker away from having to withdraw from China," said one person close to the PSA board. "It really is that serious."
A Fukai Toyotetsu employee died after an accident at the Jamestown, Indiana plant.
GHSP is expanding and moving its headquarters and engineering laboratory to the Holland Technical Center in Michigan. The company produces shift systems and smart pumps.
Leoni's wire and cable division is expanding its factory in Cuauhtemoc, Mexico. The 75k sf expansion will increase capacity to produce EV charging cables.
Magna has opened a new $50m facility in Holly, Michigan that will make cameras and vision systems for vehicles. The 230k sf facility will create over 600 jobs and be fully operational by fall 2020.
Valmet Automotive is opening a new plant for the large-scale building of EV battery packs this fall at a former Nokia plant in Salo, Finland. The company plans to "become a major player in the field of electric vehicle solutions."
Vienna's Borealis Compounds has opened a $15m plant in Taylorsville, North Carolina. The plant will produce thermoplastic polyolefin and short glass fiber compounds used in lightweighting. Its customers, BMW, VW, and Mercedes-Benz, have plants nearby.
Troy, Michigan's Meritor has opened an axel assembly facility in Mysore, India.
US automakers are trimming production while also boosting incentives to balance high inventories.
Honda will stop producing cars in Argentina next year as part of a shift in how its shares production between regions. The plant in Campana will focus solely on manufacturing motorcycles.
US tariffs of 10% from "List 4a," which includes suspension springs to instrument clusters, will still go into effect Sept. 1, 2019.
Ghana is offering 10-year tax incentives to attract automakers. VW, Nissan, Renault, Suzuki, and Toyota have announced plans to produce vehicles in the country.
SupplyChainDigest on Lean: "Toyota Attacks Costs, but in a Different Way than US Companies"