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Plante Moran Acquires Planning Perspectives, Inc., and its Proprietary Working Relations Index® Study

January 3, 2019 In The News 3 min read
Plante Moran has acquired Planning Perspectives, Inc., the world’s leading authority on company-supplier working relations.

Plante Moran acquires Planning Perspectives, Inc.

SOUTHFIELD, MICH., Jan. 3, 2019 -- Plante Moran, one of the nation’s largest certified public accounting, tax and consulting firms, announced today the acquisition of Planning Perspectives, Inc., (PPI) Birmingham, MI, the world’s leading authority on company-supplier working relations. The acquisition covers all of PPI’s intellectual property including the Annual North American Automotive OEM–Tier 1 Supplier Working Relations Index® Study conducted by Dr. John Henke, which Plante Moran plans to continue.

“We are thrilled to have a firm with the reputation of Planning Perspectives joining Plante Moran,” said Daron Gifford, Partner and Automotive/Mobility Consulting Leader. “Dr. Henke is the recognized expert in buyer-supplier relations and his work and reputation are second to none. That, combined with our portfolio of hundreds of automotive supplier clients, makes this a perfect fit and further solidifies Plante Moran’s position as a leading consultancy with deep and specific expertise in the global automotive and mobility industries.

“With the dramatic and revolutionary changes going on in these industries and with many new companies and suppliers entering and leaving the market, trusting relations between existing and new companies will be critical to achieve success. Adding Henke’s buyer-supplier relations expertise enables Plante Moran to provide a degree of practical, measurable intelligence that no other firm can offer.”

Commenting on the sale, Henke said: “We’ve had an incredibly successful run since launching our proprietary automotive industry research more than 25 years ago, and it is truly gratifying to know that we’ve had a significant impact on improving automakers’ purchasing practices and attitudes towards their suppliers. In fact, several OEMs have told us this.

“But knowing that one day I was going to retire, I began talking to various consulting firms in both Europe and the US about taking over the study. After two years of exploration, I concluded that Plante Moran was best suited to continue our research and maintain its academic-level integrity. In addition, having a major automotive financial and accounting firm presenting the data on the profit impact of good supplier relations to OEMs would only add to the results’ credibility. Plante Moran’s reputation for integrity and working for the good of their clients made them the perfect match.”

Under terms of the agreement, Plante Moran will take over the annual Working Relations Index® study; Henke will remain involved on a consulting basis for one year during the transition.Planning Perspectives and its studies will be merged into Plante Moran’s Strategy and Automotive/Mobility Consulting Practice, headed by Daron Gifford, practice leader. Leadership of the annual Working Relations Index® Study will be overseen by Dave Andrea, who joined Plante Moran last month as Principal and reports to Gifford.


About Plante Moran: Recognized as a leader in automotive and mobility strategy, Plante Moran is among the nation's largest accounting, tax and consulting firms and provides a full line of services to organizations across many industry segments. In addition to automotive, Plante Moran has depth of expertise in manufacturing and distribution, private equity, Japanese-owned businesses, financial institutions, service, health care, public sector and real estate and construction. Headquartered in Southfield, Michigan, Plante Moran has a staff of more than 3,000 professionals throughout Colorado, Illinois, Michigan and Ohio with international offices in China, Mexico, India and Japan. Plante Moran has been recognized by a number of organizations, including FORTUNE magazine, as one of the country's best places to work. For more information, visit

About the Working Relations Index® Study: Now entering its 19th year, the Annual North American Automotive OEM-Tier 1 Supplier Working Relations Index® Study is conducted from early March to mid-April. Respondents are sales persons from Tier-1 suppliers serving the Top 3 Detroit and Top 3 Japanese automakers and typically represent more than 60 percent of their annual buy. The annual study tracks supplier perceptions of working relations with their automaker customers in which they rate the US and Japanese automakers across the six major purchasing areas broken down into 14 commodity areas. The results of the study are used to calculate the WRI® which can then be used to calculate the economic value of working relations based on a proprietary PPI-developed economic model.

About PPI: Since 1990, PPI has specialized in developing and implementing supplier surveys for the automotive OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers, and companies in 17 other service and manufacturing industries worldwide, including the airframe, aircraft engine, computer, construction tool, electronics, energy, and food industries. In 2001, PPI initiated its syndicated annual North American Automotive OEM - Supplier Working Relations Index® Study of the Big Six US and Japanese automakers and in 2010 began tracking the US-based German automakers as well. In 2011, PPI added a financial-impact study that quantified the profits associated with the OEM supplier relations.


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