Transtar Industries Acquires Axiom Automotive Technologies

Combined companies will offer customers broader market presence, the most comprehensive product line and best-in-class distribution in auto transmission aftermarket parts

CLEVELAND, May 1 -- Transtar Industries, Inc., a leading national distributor of aftermarket auto transmission repair parts, today announced that it has acquired Axiom Automotive Technologies, Inc., a major supplier of original equipment (OE) and aftermarket transmission replacement parts. Transtar has a national distribution network with 32 locations in the USA, Canada and Puerto Rico, and an international division that serves a global network of aftermarket automotive distributors in 70 countries. Axiom has 65 locations throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

The combined entity will be based at Transtar's current headquarters in the Cleveland suburb of Walton Hills, Ohio. The joint company will employ over 1,700 people in 97 locations nationwide, including 270 national sales representatives. With the acquisition, it is expected that the headquarters' staff will increase by 10-20%.

"We are very excited about this acquisition, which is a major event in our industry," said Monte Ahuja, chairman and founder of Transtar. "The transaction will dramatically accelerate the growth of the Transtar brand to the benefit of our customers, employees and the transmission repair industry.

"Axiom is a first-class organization," Ahuja continued. "Their commitment to product quality and customer service will fit well with the Transtar culture. We look forward to adding many very good people, products and operations as part of the new Transtar team."

Steve Parrish, president of Axiom Technologies U.S. Distribution Group, stated, "Over the years, Axiom and Transtar have shared a commitment to quality, both in products and services. Our people are motivated to take the best of Axiom and blend it with the best of Transtar to give our customers the best service and most comprehensive product line in the industry."

Operating under the Transtar brand, the combined companies will offer an unmatched selection of almost 20,000 stock-keeping units (SKUs), representing the most complete product line of soft parts, hard parts and torque converters available. The combination will create an even stronger company offering best- in-class distribution with same-day delivery capability to 90 percent of the top markets in the United States and all major metro areas in Canada.

"The combined company's sales will be diverse across many product lines, from transmission rebuild kits to torque converters, hard parts and electricals," said Ahuja, who transformed the transmission repair industry 30 years ago with his concept of rebuild kits, as well as overnight delivery of replacement parts.

"This acquisition brings together the two leading companies in the diverse and competitive transmission parts aftermarket business," said Greg Gyllstrom, Transtar's president and chief operating officer. "The combination will enhance our ability to offer the highest quality products, best-in-industry fill rates and e-commerce capability, and advanced technical expertise. We have already begun to implement plans to integrate the two operations and convey the good news to our employees and customers."

Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, and founded by Ahuja in 1975, Transtar is a leading distributor of aftermarket transmission repair parts and a manufacturer of automotive refinishing products. Transtar has distribution locations throughout the United States, as well as a significant presence in the international market. Transtar has a 30-year record of uninterrupted growth. Linsalata Capital Partners, a Cleveland-based private equity firm, acquired a majority interest in Transtar in August, 2005.

Axiom Automotive Technologies, based in Pittsburgh, is one of the world's largest suppliers of OEM and aftermarket replacement parts to transmission professionals. Axiom's products include automatic transmission kits and components, torque converters, transmission hard parts, standard transmissions, standard clutches, and transfer cases. The Riverside Company, a private equity firm with offices in Cleveland, New York and five other U.S. cities, as well as in Europe, acquired Axiom in August 1998.

Source: Transtar Industries, Inc.

CONTACT:Jim Berry, Transtar Industries, Phone: +1-440-232-5100, Ext.
291, or Mobile: +1-440-522-9660;

Patrick Gallagher of Edward Howard,
Phone: +1-216-781-2400, or Mobile: +1-216-233-7473


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