AMN Drivetime: MANN+HUMMEL’s Kurk Wilks

AMN Drivetime: MANN+HUMMEL’s Kurk Wilks

Kurk Wilks, president and CEO, delves into how advanced technology and customer needs are shaping future products.

In its 81 years in business, Mann+Hummel has prided itself on being family-owned, remaining steadfast to its mission: separating the useful from the harmful with its filtration products. Yet, over the years, its products have evolved as the company has innovated to meet the demands of its customers. About 25 years ago, the innovation and heritage of Mann+Hummel attracted its current president and CEO to the company and he hasn’t looked back.

Kurk Wilks joined the company in 1998 on the OE side of the business as a senior account manager. Then, he transitioned into sales and took on a global role managing the General Motors account. Over the years, he has held director roles in the areas of sales, engineering and operations on local, regional and global levels. Finally, in December 2018, he was named president and general manager of the company’s OE business.

“Then, in 2020 I was asked by our chairman to become the CEO. So it’s unique. I’m the first American CEO of this German, family-owned business,” he explained. “But I think with my 25 years of experience, the deep respect I have for our heritage of what it means to be family-owned and be technology-driven, I’m able to take those assets with our people, our most important asset, and make something different for our customers to experience.”

Today, MANN+HUMMEL calls itself the leader in filtration, as it continues to invest in R&D, engineering, digitalization and advanced technology.

“We use analytics tools, AI and other processes now to really bolt on and streamline how we run the business,” he said. “But in the end, for me it’s about reliability and trust that when customers use our product, it’ll make their asset perform as desired and as needed.”

In this episode of AMN Drivetime, presented by AISIN, Wilks delves into:

  • His first roles in the automotive aftermarket and what attracted him to MANN+HUMMEL (0:51);
  • His career trajectory at the company (2:30);
  • Experiences that have shaped his view on the business (4:18);
  • How MANN+HUMMEL has benefitted from its expanded distribution strategy after opening a distribution center on the West Coast (8:16);
  • The ways the company is innovating in filtration through digital solutions and the importance of its digital hubs (10:12);
  • Additional opportunities for the company’s growth (14:12);
  • What he’s seeing as the state of the automotive aftermarket with his role as vice chairman of MEMA (15:01);
  • The Lightning Round ⚡

This episode is sponsored by AISIN. To watch more episodes of AMN Drivetime, click here.

You May Also Like

How EVs have changed wiper blade service

For EVs, noisy wiper blades can be an annoyance because there is no internal combustion engine to help cancel out that noise.

alliance-wiper-blades-EV-1400

Wiper blades have been around for more than a century, yet they’re still changing. So, how have EVs changed the wiper game? It’s all about noise and wind resistance.

For EVs, noisy wiper blades can be an annoyance because, as you know, there is no internal combustion engine to help cancel out that noise.

AMN Drivetime: DRiV’s Jeff Koviak

A grad of Northwood University, Koviak delves into his career and how he’s grown with the changes at Tenneco and DRiV over the years.

Drivetime_ Koviak
AMN Drivetime: CRP’s Mike Palm

Learn how Palm has led the company’s aftermarket product management to ensure CRP’s future success.

Drivetime_ Palm
AMN Drivetime: BendPak’s Jeff Kritzer

Kritzer worked his way up from the shipping and receiving department to president and CEO.

Drivetime_ Kritzer
AMN Drivetime: AWDA’s Ted Hughes

Aftermarket veteran Ted Hughes shares the changes he’s experienced and lessons learned through 30+ years in the aftermarket.

Drivetime_ Hughes

Other Posts

Where the road ends and the show begins: The Road to AAPEX S2E10

The crew takes one final look in the rear-view mirror for a glimpse into the history of the aftermarket and AAPEX before charging into this year’s AAPEX.

The roads that connect us: The Road to AAPEX S2E9

As Joe Keene toils away on the Blackwood, Editor David Sickels investigates a different type of automotive connection: Telematics.

RTA-S02-E09
How microgrid mastery empowers fleets to go electric

Establishing a microgrid can help fleet managers better control charging schedules for their EVs.

Amped-incharge-1400
How these autonomous EVs operate outside road lanes

We discuss the technology and navigational accuracy of autonomous low-speed electric vehicles.

Amped-carteav-1400