Franchise Spotlight: Auto Retail
Cars have around 30,000 parts and are indispensable for most Australian households.
Statistics show that few sectors enjoy such large and resilient demand as the $5 billion auto retail market. The nearly 20 million cars on Australian roads each comprise around 30,000 parts, and replacing them is generally seen as non-discretionary spending given how essential cars are for most Australians.
Moreover, motorists often fix their current car rather than buying a new model when money is tight, but spend more on less essential accessories like in-car stereo systems when incomes rise. Small wonder that the auto parts and accessories sector’s industry growth rate is forecast by market research outfit IBISWorld to rebound strongly following the Covid-19-driven dip.
Automotive retail franchises usually have online stores, but physical outlets remain crucial given many parts are impractically expensive to deliver and motorists still prize face-to-face expert advice.
Franchise industry analysis
Auto parts franchises cater to cars, vans, trucks and motorbikes and sell spare parts like gaskets and tyres, accessories like cleaning aids and windscreen wipers, in-car tech like dash cams and audio-visual systems, and tools, engine oils and touch-up paints.
They also install things like batteries, wiper blades and air conditioning systems. A passion for everything automotive is generally more favoured in franchisee candidates than direct industry experience.
Head office support includes things like store design and fit-out, operations, marketing and bookkeeping support, and inventory management and point-of-sale systems.
Established in 1982 Autopro claims to be Australia’s oldest independent auto parts and accessories retailer and backs franchisees with sponsorships and TV, radio, online and direct mail advertising.
Autopro is part of the Automotive Brands Group along with the Autobarn network, previous winner of the Franchise Council of Australia’s Best Franchise System in Australia Award.
Auto One , meanwhile, prides itself on its sales knowledge, repeat-business generating Auto One Club loyalty program and “seamless” omni-channel shopping experience.