PPG appoints VP for automotive refinish Asia, DENSO celebrates 50 years in America, SMP names director of sales and more

DENSO will mark the anniversary with various employee celebrations across its administrative, sales, manufacturing and distribution centers throughout North America. Group events will be coordinated as COVID-19 restrictions ease.

Tony Wu, from PPG

PPG appoints Tony Wu as vice president, automotive refinish, Asia

PPG today announced the appointment of Tony Wu as vice president, automotive refinish, Asia, effective March 1. He will report to Chancey Hagerty, vice president, global automotive refinish, and will succeed Pauline Yuen, who has announced her intent to retire, effective March 19.

Wu, current vice president, Greater China industrial coatings (IC) and global electronic materials, joined PPG in 2014 as general manager, IC, Greater China. In 2019, he expanded his responsibilities to include global leadership for the electronic materials segment. Prior to PPG, Wu was general manager, China, at Genus PIC. Wu has also held positions with BASF, Henkel and Nippon Paint throughout his more than 20 years in the coatings and chemicals industry.

Wu, current vice president, Greater China industrial coatings (IC) and global electronic materials, joined PPG in 2014 as general manager, IC, Greater China. In 2019, he expanded his responsibilities to include global leadership for the electronic materials segment. Prior to PPG, Wu was general manager, China, at Genus PIC. Wu has also held positions with BASF, Henkel and Nippon Paint throughout his more than 20 years in the coatings and chemicals industry.

APA to hold virtual shareholders, suppliers conference

Automotive Parts Associates (APA) will be hosting the 39th Annual Shareholders & Suppliers Conference in a virtual format March 23-25, 2021. The event is scheduled to return to a live format March 16-18, 2022 at the InterContinental Buckhead Atlanta hotel.

DENSO Products and Services Americas celebrates 50 years

DENSO Products and Services Americas (DPAM), Inc., an affiliate of leading global automotive supplier DENSO Corp., today kicks off a year of commemorative activities to celebrate the company’s 50th anniversary in America. One of the largest private employers in Long Beach, the aftermarket automotive parts and mobility solutions powerhouse has been honored with a formal proclamation signed by Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia in recognition of its half-century milestone.

DENSO will mark the anniversary with various employee celebrations across its administrative, sales, manufacturing and distribution centers throughout North America. Group events will be coordinated as COVID-19 restrictions ease.

“We are celebrating all DPAM associates whose dedication to excellence, innovation, service to our community and customersover five decades has made us the aftermarket leader we are today,” said DPAM President Hirokatsu Yamashita. “We proudly carry this tradition into the future as we commemorate 50 years of DPAM’s growth and success in America.”

DPAM’s rich history in America dates back to March 1, 1971, when the company incorporated as Nippondenso. Launched in response to the growth of the Japanese car market in the U.S., the company started out in a modest office in Hawthorne, California, with only a dozen employees. Initially, DPAM promoted the sale of air conditioners as an option for vehicles built in Japan. Demand for the units was so high that within a year the company added manufacturing A/C kits for Toyota to its U.S. operations.

Back then, the U.S. was already the world’s most car-dependent country and demand for service parts was soaring. Americanconsumers were growing increasingly smitten with Japanese cars, so DPAM expanded its inventory to offer replacement parts, such as spark plugs.

Business continued to boom, prompting DPAM to move to its current 9.7-acre campus in Long Beach in 1982. That year, the company also launched MovinCool, dedicated to sales of DENSO’s portable commercial air conditioning units. The highly successful product line was developed by DENSO to cool production workers at its own auto parts factories in Japan.

In 1999, DPAM launched DENSO Robotics to market high-performance industrial robots, another product line pioneered by DENSO to support its own manufacturing needs. Today, companies around the globe rely on DENSO’s advanced robotic technology for electronics, pharmaceuticals, biomedical devices, food processing, aerospace, technology, and many other products and industries that require precision manufacturing.

In 2001, DPAM launched its aftermarket brand DENSO First Time Fit™ in the U.S. The brand is recognized by the automotive industry as one of the nation’s top aftermarket suppliers for nearly all imported and domestic vehicles. Today, in addition to air conditioning components and spark plugs, DENSO’s aftermarket automotive product lines for cars and trucks include alternators and starters; condensers and radiators; direct ignition coils; engine management sensors; evaporators; air, cabin and oil filters; fuel pumps; ignition wire sets; oxygen and air/fuel sensors; relays; tire pressure monitoring system sensors; and wiper blades.

In 2009, DPAM added its Automatic Data Capture (ADC), the Americas’ sales arm of DENSO Wave Inc., inventor of the Secure QR Code® (SQRC). DENSO ADC supplies QR Code technology products, scanners, terminals and software to many industries that include retail and commercial; manufacturing and warehousing; healthcare and medical; transportation and logistics; and events and entertainment.

DPAM currently employs about 550 people in three countries. In addition to its Long Beach headquarters, DPAM hasmanufacturing operations in Murrieta, California; regional sales offices in Plano, Texas, and West Chester, Ohio; warehouses in Rancho Cucamonga, California, and Jeffersonville, Indiana; and a technology center in Jermyn, Pennsylvania. In Mexico and Canada, DPAM has sales and distribution staff to service customers in those countries.

Standard Motor Products names Dave Illes Director of Sales, Heavy Duty Aftermarket

Standard Motor Products today announced that Dave Illes has joined the company as Director of Sales for the Heavy Duty Aftermarket. Illes joins Standard Motor Products with more than 25 years of experience in the heavy duty and automotive aftermarket industries, most recently serving as Director of Sales and Marketing, North American Aftermarket for Lumileds LLC, a global lighting solutions company. While at Lumileds, Illes led the expansion of its product lines into the heavy duty channel as well as managed the company’s sales, marketing, and customer service team. He has also held sales leadership positions with Tenneco and Arrow Industries.

“We’re excited to have Dave join our strong team at Standard Motor Products as we continue to enhance our offering in the heavy duty market,” said Jack Ramsey, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Standard Motor Products. “He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the company and will ensure we meet our customers’ and prospective customers’ product and service needs.”

PPG Appoints John Bruno as Vice President, Investor Relations

PPG today announced that John Bruno, current director, investor relations, has been promoted to vice president, investor relations and an officer of the company. Bruno will continue to report to Vince Morales, PPG senior vice president and chief financial officer (CFO).

John Bruno

Bruno has held a variety of finance roles of increasing responsibility over his 25 years with PPG. After joining PPG’s internal audit function in 1995, he worked in various financial positions supporting the company’s former automotive replacement glass, and insurance and services businesses, and later in corporate development. Bruno relocated to Rolle, Switzerland, in 2007, first supporting the integration of the SigmaKalon acquisition and later serving as corporate controller for the EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) region.

He returned to the United States in 2009 as director, corporate audit services, and worked also as the interim chief compliance officer. Bruno relocated to Hong Kong beginning in 2013 to serve as CFO for the Asia Pacific region, before assuming his current role in 2017 based at PPG’s global headquarters in Pittsburgh. He is a certified public accountant and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in finance and a Master of Business Administration degree from Duquesne University.

Dana acquires Pi Innovo LLC

Dana Incorporated announced today that it has acquired Pi Innovo LLC a leader in embedded software solutions and electronic control units to support the light vehicle, commercial vehicle, and off-highway markets. Dana previously held a non-controlling interest.

Headquartered near Detroit, Michigan, USA, the acquisition of Pi Innovo enables Dana to increase its in-house electrodynamics capabilities and electrification product portfolio by adding a strong library of turn-key electric vehicle application software, vehicle level controllers, and auxiliary controllers.

“The extremely talented and experienced Pi Innovo team have provided exceptional modular software and controls solutions for original equipment manufacturers for more than 25 years,” said James Kamsickas, Dana chairman and CEO. “Integrating Pi Innovo with Dana’s leading e-Propulsion software capabilities will further enhance our ability to provide value for our customers as they continue to accelerate their electric vehicle portfolio development.”

Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group complete creation of fuel-cell joint venture: cellcentric

Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group today completed the transaction to form the previously announced fuel-cell joint venture. The Volvo Group has acquired 50 percent of the partnership interests in the existing Daimler Truck Fuel Cell GmbH & Co. KG for approximately SEK 6.3 billion (approximately EUR 0.6 billion) on a cash and debt-free basis. The ambition is to make the new joint venture a leading global manufacturer of fuel-cells, and thus help the world take a major step towards climate-neutral and sustainable transportation by 2050. Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group have agreed to rename the company cellcentric GmbH & Co. KG.

The joint venture will develop, produce and commercialize fuel-cell systems for use in heavy-duty trucks as the primary focus, as well as other applications. A key goal of Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group is to start with customer tests of trucks with fuel-cells in about three years and to commence series production during the second half of this decade.

The Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG own equal interests in the joint venture, but continue to be competitors in all other areas such as vehicle technology and fuel-cell integration in trucks.

In November 2020, the Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG signed a binding agreement for the joint venture. A preliminary non-binding agreement was already signed in April the same year.


For the latest news and information on the global automotive aftermarket industry, visit https://aftermarketintel.com. Do you have news? Contact Aftermarket Intel Editor Mark Phillips at mark@lpnewmedia.com.

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