Franchise Spotlight: Garage
Proven business models for a recession-busting market.
The automotive services industry growth rate is underpinned by enormous, growing, recession-resilient demand.
Statistics show that more than nine in 10 Australian households own at least one car, with many owning more. Cars need a roughly annual service and some of their circa 30,000 parts need fixing or replacing periodically – jobs that few motorists can do themselves.
Regardless of financial circumstances, car maintenance is essential for the majority of households for which cars are indispensable to daily life. Indeed, it’s good news for auto servicing businesses if cash-strapped motorists abandon plans to upgrade to newer models – older cars usually need more maintenance.
Franchise industry analysis
Market research shows that garage franchises are well placed to benefit, providing the full gamut of auto repair services, from servicing and diagnostics to paint repair and brake pad replacement.
You don’t necessarily need to be a mechanic to become a franchisee, although industry experience usually helps. Owners of independent automotive repair businesses sometimes rebrand under the franchise name and go on to own multiple lucrative units.
The Midas franchise splits a $2.5 million annual advertising budget between TV, print, radio, local area marketing and a loyalty programme, and has recently given its stores a facelift.
Auto Masters claims to have one of the sector’s most comprehensive servicing checklists – checking, measuring and testing 102 points on the car.
Ultra Tune , which ranks third on Canstar Blue’s best car servicing brands, says its software and operating procedures make services faster and more efficient and therefore lowers prices.
Mobile mechanic franchise Blue Toro offers customers convenience and franchisees a premises-free investment. This low cost model, along with help with drafting a business plan, a two-year income guarantee and training and support, will appeal to mechanics otherwise deterred from starting a business because of cost and lack of confidence, the franchisor says.