MIDAS Group, the automotive aftermarket distributor and franchisor, has signed an exclusive distribution and franchise management agreement with German joint venture Behr Hella Service in South Africa. The agreement was effective from the beginning of this month and has resulted in a network of 124 franchisees and 70 agents across the country joining the Midas franchise family. It includes the Silverton Radiators franchisee network, which over the past 60 years has developed a broad range of products and services for the engine cooling sector. Behr Hella Service in South Africa will have joint responsibility for product development together with Midas-owned Parts Incorporated Africa, the distributor of branded, guaranteed, quality parts that will handle warehousing, logistics, sales and customer support for the Behr Hella air conditioning and other product ranges. Warren Espinoza, the chief executive of Midas, said yesterday that much of the group’s success was dependent on the strength and character of its 560 franchised retail and workshop outlets in sub-Saharan Africa. “The Silverton franchise and Behr agents enhance our capacity even more to deliver a truly compelling workshop service offering for the motorist,” Espinoza said. Midas is 75 percent owned by listed Imperial Holdings. – Roy Cokayne