Peter Lake played a key role in the integration of his first employer, UK supplier Lucas Varity, into TRW Automotive in 1999. Now he is helping bring TRW together with ZF Friedrichshafen, which acquired TRW last May for $12.4 billion to create the world’s second-largest parts supplier. Lake, who is the first former TRW executive to join the ZF management board, is responsible for all sales activities of the combined companies. He provided an update on the integration and outlined how the mega-supplier plans to benefit from autonomous vehicles during a recent interview with Automotive News Europe Managing Editor Douglas A. Bolduc.
How is the ZF-TRW fusion going?
Very well. A three-stage integration process was identified and communicated from the outset. The former TRW was integrated within ZF as a fifth division. That was done on day one. We said that from day two onward we would get involved in some project-based collaboration. You see the results of this with the Advanced Urban Vehicle, a concept that features a combination of technologies from what was legacy ZF and legacy TRW.
And stage three?
In the third stage, which will come in the future, meaning two, three or four years from now, there will be some structure change. But for now, we are involved in this project-based collaboration. Something that is unique in this acquisition is that it is not cost-synergy driven. The major focus is to create something new and bigger in terms of technology and innovation for the future. The story starts with efficiency and safety and culminates in automated driving.