PRAGUE, Czech Republic - Covisint LLC will expand its board of directors so that the online trade exchange is less dominated by automakers.
Covisint CEO Kevin English said he plans to add four members to the 13-member board. When they are appointed, there will be more independents and suppliers than carmaker representatives on the board, English said at the Congress. That could make joining the e-marketplace more attractive to suppliers.
The Covisint board now includes seven automaker representatives, five supplier company representatives and English.
English is eager to have more suppliers link with Covisint.
'Covisint is an independent company, with Siemens, Johnson Controls, Delphi, Magna and Lear on the board,' he said.
English acknowledges that some suppliers and automakers may have held back from joining Covisint because it did not have a strong enough initial product offering. But, he said, things have changed.
'Today, I think that we have a pretty robust set of offerings that will only get better as time goes on,' English said.
He said he wanted to 'reach out to our colleagues at Volkswagen, BMW and Bosch's SupplyOn exchange to work with Covisint to create workable standards for the global automotive industry.'
Otherwise, English warned, the industry could find itself in the same situation it has faced with no common supported standard for computer-aided design and manufacturing.
He said Covisint is 'in active dialogue with both Toyota and Honda.' English also is hopeful about opening doors in Europe. 'We see some interest in talking to us at BMW and hopefully we can establish the same at VW.'