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(Industry, Calif. and Goldsboro, N.C. - March 27, 2015) Centric Parts and AP Exhaust Technologies have announced a joint board agreement between the two companies. Under the agreement, AP’s executive chairman, Vange Proimos, will join the Centric Parts Board of Directors, and Centric president and CEO, Dan Lelchuk, will join the Board of AP.
W2O Group announced today that it has acquired VinTank, a social engagement and customer relationship management (CRM) platform, to enable and enhance its technology-enabled client service offerings, founded by Paul Mabray and James Jory to service winery and small business owners. “To reach the majority of a brand’s audience, we are building a suite of services and software to reach the 1% who create content and the 9% who share it,” said Jim Weiss, chairman and chief executive office of W2O Group. “A modern day media offering will be defined, in the future, by who has the best influencer algorithms and media team, combined with the ability to know exactly who your audience is and how to most effectively reach them. Guessing is not a strategy.” Mabray has over 20 years in the wine and technology industry, and was the founder and CEO of the first and most successful wine ecommerce SaaS Company: WineDirect.com. Jory has been a technologist for over 25 years, and was the chief architect for eBay ProStores. Their technology targets customer engagement, calculates social media health for brands and implements innovative geo-fencing tools to support lead generation and prospective outreach. “Our team of data scientists can identify and build an audience for a brand, regardless of size,” said Bob Pearson, president of W2O Group. “VinTank provides us with a way to create agile audience engines for a brand, where we can learn what an audience is doing online, understand what content they like, evaluate who they follow and respect and, ultimately, redefine what “customer relationship management” means. Our goal is to build audiences that have the potential to shape the market.” Though VinTank has primarily focused on the wine and hospitality industries, its software has been recognized as one of the leaders in contextual customer engagement and is uniquely positioned to bring its innovative solution to any industry. As such, it will be a key critical piece of the W2O software S²aaS suite, which enhances and enables service excellence. “Our vision has always been to transform customer relationships and understanding through intelligent context,” said Mabray. “Joining the W2O team is a perfect fit to couple their powerful analytics and audience identifications tools with our data driven engagement software to supercharge the relationship between brands and their customers.” Read more about what the acquisition brings to W2O Group and the innovative approach Mabray will bring to the software practice on our Common Sense blog here.
Nomacorc released a new redesigned Select Bio closure that it claims is nearly indistinguishable from natural or “bark” cork. The Select Bio is 100% recyclable and produced with Nomacorc’s Plantcork material, which is made with plant-based polymers that also make the closure carbon neutral, according to the manufacturer. nomacorc.com
Oak Solutions Group announced the launch of its Precision Fire Toast tank stave series that the supplier claims “offers new flavors and exceptional accuracy for every stave.” The new staves are toasted with a proprietary system that closely controls the thermodynamics of the fire toasting to ensure a “consistent and accurate” toast on all stave surfaces. During the toasting process, the staves are also rotated 360 degrees to further ensure consistency. The company is offering the staves in two flavors to complement fruit-forward wines and two flavors to highlight the “richness” fire-toasted staves can contribute. “We have an exceptional platform now to push the envelope of what is possible through fire toasting and resulting flavor gradients,” said David Llodrá, Oak Solutions Group’s director of research and development. oaksolutionsgroup.com
Randox Food Diagnostics released a new kit for the detection of glycerol in wine samples. Glycerol is a byproduct of fermentation and can contribute to the “sweetness” of a wine at concentrations higher than 5.2 g/L and affect the viscosity of a wine at 25.8 g/L and more. “We supply reagents and analysis equipment to wineries across the globe and are constantly developing new kits to ensure we meet the needs of such a varied industry,” said Randox’s wine division business manager Janine McMullan. “Different regions have different analysis needs and our aim is to meet the needs of all winemakers; we are constantly developing new tests to provide a complete wine analysis profile and are delighted to be able to add glycerol to that profile.” randoxfooddiagnostics.com
SGP Packaging is now offering glass wine bottles with embossing on the interior surface. The new feature can be felt by someone holding the bottle, or the surface of the bottle can remain smooth to the touch. In a similar fashion, the embossed interior can be just slightly visible, or be invisible when the bottle is full and revealed as the wine is poured. The new option is available as a stock option or can be customized. sgp-packaging.com
Yale Materials Handling Corporation announced it is releasing the new ESC030AD three-wheel standing lift with enhanced ergonomic features and a new mast designed to improve visibility for the operator. “The three-wheel stand is engineered for maximum performance in the most extreme environments, while also helping to optimize operator confidence and comfort,” said David McNeill, Yale’s manager of product strategy. yale.com
Quality and lab professionals have a new tool at their disposal with InnovaPrep’s Concentrating Pipette - increasing their ability to detect trace biological contamination using rapid methods.
In order to better answer its customers’ needs, the Rousseau cooperage announces that it has  moved its large formats workshop (producing casks and vats) into its newly completed facility based in Gevrey-Chambertin.
With accelerated growth in 2014 – 2015, Curious Cork Imports, a Denver and Napa-based wine importer with a focus on premium European wines, is strengthening its sales management team to include six managers and to offer national support to its distributor partners, signaling an overall growth of imports in the U.S. market. Since January of 2014, Curious Cork Imports has grown distribution from its home base in Colorado, to fifteen states in the U.S., with anticipated growth to twenty markets by the end of 2015. “We’re sailing in the center of the storm, seeing imported wine growing to an eventual 50% market share in America,” says CEO Peter Baedeker. “Our growth since last year is evidence of the strong U.S. demand for quality European imports that are supported by authentic marketing to smart consumers. The additions in our sales management team will assure that we support sales growth through strong distributor and account service.”
Oak Solutions Group is pleased to the announce the latest addition to its portfolio: the Precision Fire Toast tank stave series, which offers new flavors and exceptional accuracy for every stave thanks to an innovative new toasting system.
Criveller Group released a new vertical diatomaceous earth, DE, filter that it reports is more affordable and performs better than horizontal DE filters. The new filter has DE cake on both sides of the screens, making the filter smaller and more maneuverable. Washing vertical filter elements is easier than with a horizontal filter, and discharging DE material is simpler because the exhausted cake is detached from the screens through vibration and can be recovered through a large opening at the bottom of the unit. criveller.com 
G3 Enterprises announced it is entering into a partnership with PET container manufacturer Petainer to tap into the fast-growing wine-on-tap segment. U.K.-based Petainer produces recyclable PET containers at factories in Europe. The company will produce 20-liter wine kegs designed for one-time use that will be sold through G3 to North American wineries. Once empty, the plastic kegs can be recycled eliminating the need to ship, store and clean empty kegs. G3enterprises.com, petainer.com
The new HI2002 or “edge” pH/ORP meter and HI2004 DO meter by Hanna Instruments Inc. are both half an inch thick and weigh 9 ounces to allow them to be used as either portable or bench-top devices. The units also feature a 5.5-inch LCD display screen, capacitive touch keypad, dual USB ports, cradle with swivel arm electrode holder and wall mount. The digital electrodes also feature a 3.5 mm connector. hannainst.com 

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