During the first half of 2019, Manchester-based commercial wheel services company MWheels has been implementing an evolutionary process to change its target. The company has sought to position itself differently within its markets; from a UK wheel distributor campaigning for legislative input on wheel safety, to a European provider of wheels and wheel services designed to make commercial operators more aware of the safety and business implications of fitting and maintaining the most suitable products for their fleets. “The last four months,” chief executive officer Matthew Mardle tells Tyres & Accessories, “have been a big success in following through on the strategies” implemented since the changes in leadership at the helm of the company in January – Mardle was appointed CEO, while company founder John Ellis took up a new position as chairman – and, in the longer term, since the company opened its European operation, MWheels GmbH, in Germany.
MWheels has promoted Matthew Mardle to chief executive officer (CEO), a role in which he takes responsibility for financial results and all day-to-day operations of the business. John Ellis, who originally founded the business over 30 year ago, takes the role of chairman, having been chief executive, and continues to be involved in the company’s leadership function.
Earlier this year, MWheels established an operation in Germany to spearhead the company’s push into mainland Europe. MWheels GmbH opened for business on 1 February, with the plan being to build up a team over the following 12 to 18 months. This team has now been strengthened with the appointment of Stefan Kantz as European office coordinator.
MWheels’ technical experts and Michelin Training Centre are working together to further improve overall knowledge of commercial vehicle wheel safety throughout the industry. Based predominantly around hands-on workshop participation alongside traditional seminar lessons, the companies aim to provide in-depth knowledge of the wheel itself, fitting and general maintenance, wheel security, and an understanding of affiliated parts such as axles, nuts and threads.
MWheels has become a key sponsor of British Truck Racing Championship (BTRC) contenders Team Oliver Racing, supplying Xlite forged aluminium wheels for both 2018 racing trucks and all the teams transporter vehicles. The agreement, which will see the Xlite and Xbrite brands feature prominently throughout the series, will also support an assortment of client and media marketing initiatives.
Negotiations to rectify the Department for Transport’s apparent failure to incorporate European Union Directives 2014/45/EU and 2014/47/EU into the wheel-related section of the new Heavy Goods Vehicle Inspection Manual has yielded a positive result for MWheels. The commercial vehicle wheel specialist shares that following a meeting with the DfT, DVSA and Parliamentary representative Mike Kane MP on 17 May, the DfT “has agreed to work with MWheels to investigate ways in which the Heavy Goods Vehicle Inspection Manual’s section on wheels can be enhanced to improve vehicle safety.”
MWheels and wheel manufacturing giant Wheels India (WIL) have signed a new five-year exclusive European distribution agreement for Xlite and Xbrite forged aluminium wheels. The contract continues a relationship that started in the 1940s with classic car wire wheels, and which progressed into steel commercial vehicle wheels in the 1980s and forged aluminium CV wheels in 2010.
MWheels’ white paper, ‘Evaluating commercial vehicle wheel safety – how to keep safe and stay compliant’, has been downloaded more than 100 times. The wheel distributor states that UK original equipment manufacturers, commercial vehicle fleet operators and senior personnel from armed forces, construction, emergency services and legal firms have taken the opportunity to learn more about wheel safety ahead of full implementation of the EU Roadworthiness Act on May 20, 2018.
MWheels has appointed Mike Cornwell to the newly created post of European supply chain manager, following a three-month senior consultancy role. The wheel distributor, formerly known as Motor Wheel Service Distribution (MWSD), states that Cornwell has already introduced “a market-leading sales and operations planning process along with a structured sales forecasting methodology” and “will further develop integrated systems with service partners and suppliers to improve distribution efficiency” for MWheels’ full commercial wheel range.
Motor Wheel Service has been active in the wheel industry for more than eight decades and a distributor of commercial vehicle wheels under the name Motor Wheels Service Distribution (MWSD) for the past 35 years. The MWSD board of directors has now decided to establish a new company in Germany at the start of next year in order to enable it to significantly expand its aftermarket distribution in continental Europe and then use this in the mid-term to establish original equipment partnerships with truck trailer manufacturers.
Giti Tire has promoted Matthew Mardle to its senior management team, taking up the newly created position of European supply chain manager. Mardle will be responsible for product life cycle management, forecasting and planning for GT Radial, Primewell and Runway tyres across passenger car, SUV and light truck (PCR) and commercial truck and bus (TBR) operations.