PHILADELPHIA - Axalta Coating Systems celebrated its second consecutive Supplier of the Year Award from General Motors (GM) during a luncheon on June 13 at the company’s Mount Clemens, MI, research and manufacturing facility. Also during the celebration, representatives from Axalta and the University of Michigan (U-M) unveiled the joint paint scheme on the No. 88 Axalta Chevrolet SS racecar that Dale Earnhardt Jr. will drive on August 28 during the Pure Michigan 400 at the Michigan International Speedway.

“Axalta’s global team takes great pride in the recognition that we’ve received from our valued customer General Motors,” said Steven R. Markevich, Axalta Executive Vice President and President of Transportation Coatings. “Having the employees at our Mount Clemens plant and our special guests share this day as we unveil the car is a great way to recognize our new partnership with the University of Michigan and our long-standing relationship around the world with GM.”

In March, GM recognized Axalta among 110 of its best global suppliers during its 24th Annual Supplier of the Year awards ceremony in Detroit. Automotive suppliers from 17 countries received GM’s Supplier of the Year award for consistently exceeding GM’s expectations, creating outstanding value or bringing new innovations to the company.

“We are focused on building positive supplier relationships, bringing new, customer-centric innovations to GM, and being the OEM of choice among suppliers,” said Steve Kiefer, GM Vice President, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain, during the ceremony last March. “The companies we recognize tonight not only have brought innovation, they delivered it with the quality our customers deserve.”

Axalta and U-M recently entered into an educational partnership to support engineering and business students. To celebrate the relationship, the U-M branding will be painted on the side of the No. 88 Chevrolet SS in addition to the recognizable Axalta logo. Axalta will host 50 U-M business and engineering students at the Pure Michigan 400 race to help them better understand the technology and performance that goes into racing and Axalta’s coatings that shine on the car.

“The U-M team was very proud to be part of the unveiling with Axalta today,” said Brian Noble, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education and Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at U-M. “The students affiliated with our Solar Car program had great engagements with scientists, researchers and manufacturing operators at Axalta. It was a thrill having hands-on interaction between the generations.”

“Axalta has been such a tremendous partner for us here in Macomb,” said Marilyn Lane, State Representative for Michigan’s 31st District, who also attended the event. “I am so proud to see them receive this award for a second straight year.”