World's Largest Automotive Sourcing Portal Announced

DETROIT & SHENZHEN, China—(BUSINESS WIRE)—October 11, 2006— Automakers and suppliers worldwide will benefit from the creation of the world's largest online business-to-business automotive sourcing portal, which was announced today in Shenzhen, China. The portal will allow automotive industry buyers and sellers worldwide to interact and perform commercial transactions online.

The portal will also include a wide range of value-added activities that will be of great interest to the US automotive economy -- one of them being the attraction of Chinese auto suppliers to the country. This opportunity has the potential to create a wide range of employment and revenue for automotive states. and Shanghai KOWIN Automotive Components Co., Ltd., the global sourcing division of Chery Automotive Co., have signed a letter of intent to partner on the effort and made the announcement during the Hi-Tech Fair in Shenzhen, China. The organizations expect to sign the formal agreement during the Beijing Auto Show this November.

"Partnering with KOWIN/Chery offers the opportunity to connect global OEM buyers with the high-quality Chinese suppliers they are looking for, as well as the potential to bring economic opportunity to the local automotive industry," said Michael DaMour, senior vice president, Global Business Development at "We believe we have a great opportunity to attract foreign companies to invest or source products from here, which we anticipate will help create jobs and economic growth."

The portal also will allow participating companies to post the necessary information for completing transactions, including RFQ's, specifications, drawings and parts catalogs. It also offers secure information management, including e-mail, Web meeting capability, 24-hour customer service/help desk, buyer and seller databases and other automotive-related resources. The portal will also offer valuable content on global sourcing and will include the latest information, dynamic analysis, and professional view points. Additionally, the portal will provide offline activities, including training, certification and purchasing events, all while promoting business between countries around the world.

"Sourcing from emerging markets, especially China, has become imperative for most players in mature automotive markets," said Kevin Chen, CEO of Shanghai KOWIN Automotive Components Co. Ltd. "With thousands of suppliers in China, and varying terms of quality and service capability, it creates significant challenges for global buyers to find appropriate suppliers in China. The creation of this portal will help to accelerate that process."

About Chery Automotive and KOWIN

Founded in 1997, Chery Automotive Co. (CAC) is the fastest growing independent automaker in China. Chery is committed to developing world-class automobiles via cooperation with top engineering firms such as Lotus Engineering of the U.K., Mitsubishi Automotive Engineering of Japan, and leading auto design firms such as Bertone and Pininfarina of Italy.

Shanghai KOWIN Automotive Components Co., Ltd. was founded by two of China's leading automakers, Chery Auto and Brilliance Auto, in May 2004 as a purchasing platform. KOWIN is now the sole sales agent for Chery's tier 1 and tier 2 suppliers as well as the distribution agent of spare parts for Chery's global operations. KOWIN provides professional sourcing services and international trade of auto parts by leveraging Chery's supply base network of over 4,000 OEM qualified automotive suppliers, both in China and overseas. Over the last several years, KOWIN has had a number of successful cases of providing sourcing services to many foreign OEMs and big aftermarket buyers in China.

About connects the worldwide auto supplier industry with the resources to effectively do business globally. Through the web site,, auto supplier executives can find insight, solutions and strategies focused on doing business in the world's top automotive markets.

Monthly eJournals provide targeted information and insight on doing business in foreign automotive markets and Solutions provide effective international answers to suppliers' global business and operational needs. The Company's eJournals, including CHINAtalk, ASIAtalk, EUROtalk, AMERItalk, LATINtalk and GLOBALtalk HR, now reach over 25,000 automotive supplier subscribers worldwide.

Parent company, HCI Group Ltd., is based in Detroit, Michigan, with European headquarters in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

For more information contact Michael DaMour at 248-526-3312 or

Michael DaMour, 248-526-3312
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