PPG Delivery Surcharge Sparks Industry Feedback

When PPG announced earlier this week that it would implement a fuel surcharge on deliveries beginning October 13, 2005, the industry began buzzing.

AGRR magazine and its online daily newsletter, glassBYTES, have received two e-mails from companies that also are adding surcharges to their services.

Import Glass Corp., of City of Industry, Calif., issued a statement that it will also adopt a fuel service charge in place, also to begin on October 13.

"We feel that PPG's position on this matter is fair for the distributor and most importantly fair for the customer that will not be affected by a cut in service. We will be following PPG's format and we hope that other distributors do not pass up the opportunity to offset costs and take a leadership role on this important issue," the press release said.

AG distributors, a wholesale auto glass source headquartered in Boise, Idaho, also has made the decision to add a fuel service charge "that will apply to all customer deliveries provided by our company vehicles that are beyond 30 miles from our distribution centers." AG's fuel service fee will begin on October 1, two weeks earlier than Import Glass' or PPGs, and will be a single, flat $5, charged "one time per delivery … regardless of the number of items or invoices delivered."

The company clarified within its statement that customers within its 30-mile boundary will not be subjected to the fuel charge and plans to "maintain the same level of service and delivery schedules to all of our customers." The company statement further says that should the price of gas drop significantly, they will "reevalute the necessity of this charge."

On the AGRR magazine message boards, where the topic of "free mobile installations" has already taken and continues to take place, many people wondered if companies along the chain of command were expected to absorb the surcharge or pass it on the end consumer. The response of those on the boards varied; while some indicated that they already worked the price of fuel into their overall price on jobs, others did not and were trying to determine if they could work in a fuel charge themselves and still offer "free mobile service" or if adding a surcharge negates the idea of the mobile service being "free."

To join the discussion or pose your own question to the industry, visit our message boards at www.glass.com/boards.php.

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