VOLUME 6 -
People in the News
Jolliff Retires From IGA Board of Directors
The IGA’s founding father, Carl Jolliff of Jolliff Glass in Peoria, Ill., has announced his official retirement from the association’s board of directions, effective immediately.
“Carl Jolliff has served independent auto glass shops tirelessly for years, and we wish to honor him as he retires from this board. We will miss his wisdom and energy as we continue to seek to solve the problems plaguing our industry,” said Kurt Muller, IGA president.
The IGA board of directors will give a plaque to Jolliff to commemorate and honor his service to the industry.
“We are greatly saddened to see Carl retire,” said co-director Marc Anderson, “Carl was one of the industry leaders who were instrumental in the formation of the IGA. He was also the impetus behind the formation of what eventually became the AGRSS Standard. Carl Jolliff has served independent auto glass shops tirelessly for years.”
Muller said Jolliff will be honored with a presentation at an upcoming meeting.
Stockton Appoints James Horrox as COO
The Stockton Glass Group of Stockton, Calif., has appointed James Horrox as chief operating officer. He will oversee all retail and wholesale operations, sales, product procurement and strategic business development. He will also lead the evaluation and implementation of market expansion plans in select locations throughout the southwest.
Prior to his assignment with the Stockton Glass Group, Horrox was a regional vice president with Safelite Auto Glass.
A Minute With: Peter Pretorius
“Today’s environment requires a new and different mode,” says Peter Pretorius, outgoing marketing director of Shatterprufe Ltd of South Africa. A well-respected industry icon with the South African manufacturer, Pretorius has decided to retire this year, capping a landmark career spanning decades as an auto glass supplier. As a marketing director with the world as his territory, Pretorius has seen—and been able to compare—the glass industry in most countries of the world. He took a few moments to talk with AGRR magazine at the Belron Eurofitter competitor in Tilburg, Holland in late June.
Q—So what’s changed since you started?
A—Technology more than anything else. The windshields being manufactured in Europe are far more complex than they have ever been—solar control properties, heated windshields—and the fact that glass is taking up more and more space in the car changes everything. It narrows the capabilities of suppliers. It becomes harder to manufacture these different types of glass. Independ-ent glass companies can’t keep up. Larger companies find that they have to be even more well-capitalized than they used to.
Q—Do you see the same types of things in the States?
A—In the States, nobody is making any money. The pricing structure has collapsed. The people the suppliers sell to let it collapse. Large U.S. distributors are going to have big difficulties because of this.
Q—Isn’t it the same in Europe?
A—No it’s not. European manufacturers have strong control over their pricing through companies such as Pilkington and San Gobain. They control the market.
Q—The Chinese are now exporting large amounts of glass into the States as well …
A—People have seen what’s happening in the States and they don’t want it to happen to them. The Chinese are selling a lot of glass into developing countries too. The dollar is weak right now so the Chinese have a leg up.
You have to remember Europe doesn’t have the Mygrants and the Bartelstones. This makes it harder for foreign competition to enter the market.
Q—The European giant Belron has been a good customer of yours. Why do you think you have been so successful with such a big, demanding client?
A—If you deliver on time and meet their requirements, then Belron will support you. They have loyalty. People in the U.S. will change their supplier for a few cents savings. Not here. Companies like Belron are looking for added value for the longer run.
The auto glass industry is very small and very personalized. I am lucky that my customers have become good friends.
Q—That sounds like a too-good-to-be-true relationship. Is it?
A—We meet for a check or to fix things that need improvement. We constantly ask ourselves how to improve the supply chain. What are our other costs? How is the packaging info? How do we handle returns? We create benchmarks and try to improve our quality against them.
Q—What are you going to miss most about the industry?
A—The people, definitely. There are some strong ties there.
Q—What advice do you have for the auto glass industry?
A—Two things: first, you have to continuously upgrade your plants and many aren’t. If you don’t upgrade, you will be squeezed out of the market. Second build a niche of quality friends in the industry. Networking is another key to success.
Q—What’s your greatest disappointment about the industry?
A—I’m disappointed to see how the margins have eroded. It makes it difficult to compete and for that reason the U.S. has been a big disappointment. The market has been driven downward.
You know, it’s not the pricing system, it’s the integrity of it. We’ve also sold on a net price basis. We’ve been able to manage that type of pricing successfully. We have a pricing structure that’s been maintained. The U.S. does not.
Q—Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know?
A—That I’ve had a wonderful career I am thankful for. There were some wonderful opportunities and some wonderful people—special, sincere people—I became close with. I’ve appreciated that.
Q—So what are you going to do in retirement?
A-Oh, I’ll golf … and I’m a keen fisherman. I love the outdoor life. We are designing a new house by the bay and that will keep me busy.
A—[long pause, big smile] Well, maybe something down the line.