Three Michigan-based companies have initiated a joint venture to produce seating for school buses.
M2K Seating Systems LLC, Tachi-S Engineering USA and Takata Safety Systems USA planned to announce the venture at the school bus industry meetings in Myrtle Beach, S.C., in late October.
The joint company, SynTec Seating Solutions, will be based in North Carolina and will be owned by M2K, Tachi-S and Takata.
M2K produces school bus seating with and without restraint systems. Tachi-S produces auto and truck seating, and Takata produces automotive safety systems.
M2K, whose shareholders and managers have decades of experience in the school bus industry, will be the majority shareholder of SynTec.
Several other companies are supporting the joint venture with engineering and production facilities throughout North America, including Irvin Automotive (seat upholstery), Woodbridge Group (seat foam) and BHM Technologies (seat frames).
Company officials said that by combining the capabilities of several large and well-established suppliers of seating components, the venture will be able to leverage technologies that are already developed and in high-volume production for the auto and truck industries throughout the world.
“For owners, operators and producers of school buses, this means access to new and improved technologies that provide lower costs, better quality, enhanced safety and lighter weights — a major factor in improving fuel efficiency and reducing overall operating expenses for buses,” the companies said in a statement.