Even in the sour state of the 2008 economy, the merger and acquisition environment holds promise for visionary specialty-equipment companies bold enough to explore its opportunities. Equity fund investment groups, flush with cash from retiring baby boomers looking for sound investments, are ready to invest in specialty automotive businesses.
Filler for eNews
Pirelli Tires recently announced a $15 million investment to boost its manufacturing capacity by 20% at its Modular Integrated Robotized System (MIRS) factory in Rome, Georgia. The factory produces high-performance tires for the North American market, and the investment will increase the number of MIRS production lines from four to five.
TROUBLED TIMES: Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves pleaded not guilty to charges of tax evasion and fraud, which the federal government brought against Castroneves and his sister Katiucia last week. Castroneves was freed on a $10 million bond but cannot leave the country.
HE’S OUT: Former Craftsman Truck Series champion Jack Sprague has been released from his ride in the series with Kevin Harvick Inc. Team owner Kevin Harvick will drive the No. 2 Chevrolet at Martinsville (Virginia) Speedway on October 18.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) plans to update the new performance tests for motorcycle helmets under Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 218. The NHTSA is proposing to strengthen the penetration, impact and retention tests.
SEMA submitted comments to federal lawmakers defending continued use of off-highway vehicles (OHV) on federal lands in the Eastern Sierra and Northern San Gabriel region in Southern California. SEMA opposes legislation (H.R. 6156) to designate 475,000 acres of federal lands in Mono, Inyo and Los Angeles Counties as “wilderness.”
OHVs would be denied access to the land since motorized recreation is not permitted in a wilderness area. The bill was the topic of a hearing by a U.S. House of Representatives Natural Resources Subcommittee.
President Bush signed into law the economic stabilization bill which included renewal of the research and development (R&D) tax credit, a top legislative priority for SEMA. The R&D tax credit was extended through 2009, retroactive to its expiration on December 31, 2007. The new law increases the alternative simplified credit from 12% to 14% for the 2009 tax year and repeals the alternative incremental research credit for the 2009 tax year.
Our industry has much at stake in this election. On November 4, 2008, voters will elect thousands of state and local leaders, 11 governors, 435 members of Congress, 35 senators and a new president. Each and every one of these elected officials has the ability to positively or negatively shape legislation affecting each of us, our company and our communities.