Volume 10, Issue 1 - January/February 2008

Field of Vision
from the editor

Another New Year
by Penny Stacey

When I was younger, I would get pretty excited about the New Year—but this year, as the clock stroke midnight, I realized something. Barry Manilow had it right—it’s just another New Year’s Eve. It’s just an ordinary day.

Nothing really changes each year but the calendar. For the most part, things really do stay the same.That’s not to say that a year can’t bring a lot of changes, though. Just look at this last year.

In the auto glass industry, we saw 2007 bring lots of surprises—starting last February with the purchase of Safelite by Belron. The purchase became final in March 2007 (see story in the March/April/May 2007 issue of AGRR, page 25).

In June, Safelite/Belron US stopped the presses once again when they announced that they had settled the ongoing suit filed by Diamond-Triumph in 2002 and announced that they had plans to work together to “advance the interests of the industry on best practices,” with a particular focus on the practice of providing incentives (see story in the June/July 2007 issue of AGRR, page 18).

In June, one of the industry’s biggest news stories—and longest running—broke, when AGRR magazine/glassBYTEs.com™ learned that PPG was exploring the option of divesting itself of its auto glass business. In July, the company announced it hoped to have a buyer in place by end of summer—and, finally, on September 13, we learned that Beverly Hills, Calif.-based Platinum Equity, a private equity firm, had agreed to buy the business. At the time, the company expected the deal to be complete by end of fourth quarter. Then, on December 27, as the year came to a close, we received another surprise—that Platinum had filed suit in an attempt to terminate the agreement (see related story on page 10).

Of course, I’ve only mentioned the massive stories here—to mention all the stories to hit the auto glass press this year would take much more room than I have—or that you would have time to read.

So, yes, Barry was right—New Year’s itself may just be another day, but a year in review has a lot to offer. And, you have to think, what’s to come this year? Changes may not happen overnight on December 31, but they’re definitely in the works.

Please stay tuned to AGRR magazine/glassBYTEs.com™ for the latest. 

And I hope you had a happy New Year!

P.S. This year was actually a big year for AGRR magazine/glassBYTEs.com™ as well. In addition to covering all of the above news in our magazine and daily e-newsletter, we also added four new blogs to our website, with more to come. Please be sure to check these out—links are available on the glassBYTEs.com homepage. 

Penny Stacey is the editor of AGRR magazine/glassBYTEs.comTM

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