Collision Repair 16#5

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Collision’s Destiny

Brad Mewes on mergers, acquisitions and more



Get the most out of your web presence

Must-see events of 2017




For the founders of Simplicity Car Care, life is better when it’s simple Plus : Coyote Group comes to Canada, Uni-Select buys Dash Distributors, the art and science of estimator interactions and much, much more! Volume 16, Number 5 l October 2017




Canada Post Canadian Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement No. 40841632   l  86 John Street, Thornhill, ON L3T 1Y2


ON THE COVER 19  simple life For the founders of Simplicity Car Care, life is better when it’s simple.

Volume 16, Issue 5, October 2017

features 28  consolidation’s limits Consultant Brad Mewes on where the industry goes from here. 33 green manufacturing AkzoNobel has opened the “world’s most sustainable paint factory.” Will others follow suit?


37  20 Years or more Experts say it will be two decades or more before we see true self-driving cars. The stars aligned for CARSTAR North America’s first combined conference in Charlotte, North Carolina.

53  Desert heat Check out our exclusive guide to the best of the 2017 SEMA Show! 57  digital revolution Manage social media, stay in touch and order parts, all with the click of a button.

NEWS 8, 72  COLLISION REPAIR 89  Towing & Recovery 91  RECYCLING



Will proposed tax changes hurt repairers? Kelvin Campbell of CSN Chapman says they will.


CCIF Edmonton shines a light on increased repair costs and human resource challenges.

On the Cover: The founders of Simplicity Car Care: Domenic Prochilo, Paul Prochilo and Domenic Ieraci.


Canada’s collision repair information resource. New articles and top news stories daily. Visit

HAVE YOUR SAY. We welcome your comments on anything you see in Collision Repair magazine. Send your feedback to

6  Publisher’s page  by Darryl Simmons Back to school. 14  Who’s driving?  by Jay Perry Follow up. 16  Prairie view  by Chelsea Stebner Like Joe did. 18 Dear john by John Scetta Three keys. 20 point blank by Sam Piercey In support of the Sam Piercey Foundation. 22  training  by Andrew Shepherd Clear path. 100  Recycling  by David Gold How we do it. October 2017  collision Repair  5

publisher’s page

classact It’s always a perfect time to train


By Darryl Simmons


ver y September I watch as the kids head back for another year of school, and I’m always reminded that it’s a good time to train. There’s never a bad time for training, but the autumn season always brings it to the top of my mind. As an industry, we’re always beating the drum for training of the technicians and painters, but there’s no reason education should be limited to the back of the shop. Isn’t there something you’ve always wanted to learn? There must be. Now is the perfect time to get started. Shop owners and managers seem to fall into two distinct groups: former (and current!) technicians and business people.

meet other business people in your community and build relationships. That alone is worth the time it takes. Maybe you’re a business person first. In that case, it might be time for you to get your hands dirty. See about checking out one of the skills courses at your local community college. You can learn to weld, for example, or how to puzzle out the intracies of a wiring diagram. These hands-on skills don’t need to be related to bodywork, necessarily. Just building your skills, even a little bit, will give you more insight into the challenges your techs are facing every day. Plus, you’ll meet new people, people who may already

there’s no reason education should be limited to the back of the shop. These are backgrounds with very different skill sets, but they both have tremendous value. I think you’ll find that the top leaders and influencers in our industry have a least a little bit of both. If your background is technical, then you can take this opportunity to polish up your business skills. No doubt you’re already running your business and running it well. With that said, I bet there’s still at least one thing you would like to learn, and that it will benefit you and your business. You might not be able to get an MBA at night school (although it’s definitely possible) but there are plenty of courses available on how to manage and motivate employees, make the most of social media and other essential topics. Becoming more expert at any of these is certain to help you, even if the courses are not directly collision related. You’ll likely


have an aptitude for technical matters. They have the aptitude, but may never have really considered collision as a career ... until they met you. In other words, you might meet your next top-producing tech. We all know that education doesn’t have to be formal. Some of the best schooling available can come from your peers and suppliers. That’s one of the reasons I attend the SEMA Show every year. It’s packed with vendors and top repairers. Most of them will be only too glad to share their knowledge with you. This year’s show takes place, as always, in Las Vegas. I hope to see you there!

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EDITORIAL DIRECTOR MIKE DAVEY (905) 549-0454 EDITOR ALEXANDRE DUGAS (905) 370-0101 ASSOCIATE EDITOR ERIN MCLAUGHLIN (905) 370-0101 CREATIVE DEPARTMENT MICHELLE MILLER (905) 370-0101 GREG SMITH (905) 370-0101 STAFF WRITER JEFF SANFORD VP Industry Relations & Advertising GLORIA MANN (647) 998-5677 Managing Director iMM/Director Business Solutions & Marketing ellen Smith (416) 312-7446 SPECIAL PROJECTS MANAGER MIKE CAMERON (905) 370-0101 CONTRIBUTORS David Gold, Jay Perry, Chelsea Stebner, andrew shepherd, Josh White

SUBSCRIPTION One-year $39.95 / Two-year $64.99 Collision Repair™ magazine is published bi-monthly, and is dedicated to serving the business interests of the collision repair industry. It is published by Media Matters Inc. Material in Collision Repair™ magazine may not be reproduced in any form without written consent from the publisher. The publisher reserves the right to refuse any advertising and disclaims all responsibilities for claims or statements made by its advertisers or independent columnists. All facts, opinions, statements appearing in this publication are those of the writers and editors themselves, and are in no way to be construed as statements, positions or endorsements by the publisher. PRINTED IN CANADA ISSN 1707-6072 CANADA POST CANADIAN PUBLICATIONS MAIL SALES PRODUCT AGREEMENT No. 40841632 RETURN POSTAGE GUARANTEED Send change of address notices and undeliverable copies to: 455 Gilmour St Peterborough, ON K9H 2J8

“We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada”

Collision Repair magazine is published by Media Matters Inc., publishers of:


People on the move Jean Charles Dupuis, Chief Operating Officer of the Fix Automotive Network, has announced the appointment of Yves Roy to the position of Yves Roy. General Manager of the Fix Automotive Network’s Québec Region. Roy’s role will involve pursuing the strategic development of all Fix Automotive Network brands in Québec, and supporting operations at Fix Auto, Novus and Speedy locations. “I am proud to join this dynamic team,” says Roy. “It embodies a mix of experience and youth with a passion for the industry and a commitment to the success of our franchise strategic partners. I look forward to continuing ties with the Québec network.” Uniparts OEM announced Phil Jennings’ appointment to Territory Manager and Sales Representative for Calgary, Alberta. Jennings has over 16 years experience in project Phil Jennings. management, executive management, coaching and consulting. “We are very excited to have Phil on our team. His industry experience, knowledge and contacts will be a key in helping us develop in the Alberta market for Uniparts OEM,” says Mike Kaplaniak, Vice President of Uniparts OEM. Jennings’ responsibilities will involve managing the Uniparts OEM supplier network, as well as ensuring quality service to all new and future bodyshop customers. “I’m excited to be joining a great company like Uniparts, and the corporate culture and management team have made me feel very welcome,” says Jennings. A k z o No b e l h a s a n nounced the promotion of Sylvain Séguin to Vehicle Refinishes Canadian Country Manager. Séguin began his career working at the shop level Sylvain Séguin. and quickly climbed the corporate ladder, with various positions in AkzoNobel’s Vehicle Refinishes unit. “AkzoNobel is a company which prides itself on supporting ambition and training for its employees. I’ve always counted on AkzoNobel in terms of support,” says Séguin. Séguin will develop and execute sales strategies in the Canadian marketplace. 8  collision Repair

Estify has announced the appointment of Toan Nguyen as CIO/CTO/CSO. CTO meansNguyenisEstify’sChief Technologist. Nguyen will oversee the development of Toan Nguyen. the company’s core products, Estify Transfer and Estify Pro. “Toan has become one of the best-recognized technology leaders in our industry by creating ‘first-of-its-kind’ technology and fostering industry-wide collaborations that have been responsible for advancing major breakthroughs for repairers,” says Estify CEO Rochelle Thielen. Nguyen has spent 14 years in executive roles in the automotive industry, focusing on application development, software and hardware engineering. “Witnessing recent advancements in vehicular technology really motivated me to venture back into the software space,” says Nguyen. Fix Auto Canada has seen three recent additions to its executive team. Rhonda Bricknell has been appointed to the position of Senior Business Development Manager. Rhonda Bricknell. Laura Pennings, Director of Sales, notes, “Rhonda will be a valuable asset to our sales team focusing her efforts on developing both direct insurer and broker relationships.” “I chose Fix Auto be- John Rodrigues. cause I knew that they were a reputable company experiencing lots of growth,” says Bricknell. John Rodrigues will be taking on the position of National Corporate Sales Elizabeth Wilcox. Manager. With over 20 years’ experience in sales positions, a statement from the company says Rodrigues will be a strong contributor to the Fix Auto Canda Network. Elizabeth Wilcox has been appointed to Communications and Public Relations Manager. Shehas experience managing corporate communications and media relations.


Will proposed tax changes hurt repairers? Ottawa’s fall parliamentary session started September 11, and we’ve already seen signs that proposed changes to small business taxes may be the biggest battle on Parliament Hill. Kelvin Campbell is the Owner/Operator of CSN Chapman Auto Body in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He believes that the proposed tax changes are an issue that all bodyshop owners should address with their Members of Parliament. “I think this is one of the most important issues to face small business in quite some time,” he says. “Given the fast pace of which this industry is changing, this will have a dramatic effect on our ability to invest in our businesses.” Campbell has provided us with the text of a letter sent to his MP below. He has given permission for other owners to copy this letter and send it to their MPs. To whom it may concern, I am writing to you to express my deep concerns with the proposed tax changes released by the Department of Finance on July 18, 2017. These new rules will be devastating for my business and for all family businesses in this country and I urge you to intervene and work on our behalf to seek a delay to allow time for a more fulsome review and consultation on the impact. My comments below are not technical in nature, rather they represent my thoughts and position relative to the longer-term impacts and the fundamental unfairness with regard to how these major changes in tax policy are being presented and implemented by the Minister of Finance.


Federal proposals represent significant tax reform for family business in Canada. The Minister describes the proposals as closing “tax loopholes” for the rich – this is clearly misleading. The federal proposals released by the Department of Finance on July 18 will fundamentally change the way private business is taxed in our country. Review and reform of our tax system may very well be appropriate; however, it should be conducted in a more complete manner with appropriate study and consultation. Significantly reforming the tax rules for private business with a 75 day consultation period is just not appropriate.


Family business owners are the middle class. The approach and language in the new tax proposals is blatantly encouraging class distinction in Canada. They describe business families as the rich who use corporations as “tax loopholes”, and suggest that the middle class are victims of all of this. This is unfair and totally false, as a majority of small and medium-sized business owners are middle class Canadians - they are hard working individuals who also employ many other people in the middle class in just about every community across Canada. The federal tax proposals directly target and significantly impact family business owners and by extension their employees and is therefore a negative for our middle class.


Family enterprise is the engine of our economy. Small and medium sized businesses are the backbone of our economy and responsible for the majority of job creation in Canada. This sector collectively is the largest employer in the country and a major contributor to our growth. There are literally hundreds of thousands of small and medium sized businesses in Canada. In addition to the employment they create, these business families are very philanthropic, contributing in a significant way to the communities from coast to coast where they work and live. The government’s tax proposals send a very negative message to current and future business owners about the nature and importance of their role in our economy.


It’s misleading to equate business owners with salaried employees. Business owners take on significant risk in running their businesses. The tax treatment of a business family should not be compared and benchmarked against a salaried employee who does not assume similar risks, and in fact enjoys the benefit of labour laws, employment insurance, and other mechanisms in the system. The current federal tax system, which allows business owners to use corporations and do legitimate tax planning in recognition of the risk and sacrifice they make, has been in place for decades and it is inappropriate to now characterize this as “loopholes”. Our tax system should support and promote business ownership for the contribution they make to our economy and the risks and sacrifices they take on for their employees and communities.


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Proposed new rules introduce more complexity and uncertainty. Many would argue that our current system is already too complex making it burdensome for businesses to comply and for the CRA to administer. These new rules will introduce even more complexity and uncertainty, particularly with respect to their application. The rules as drafted, introduce subjective assessments in their ongoing application, the potential for double taxation for business families, and possible retroactive application. Clearly this is not consistent with the Liberal government’s 2015 stated promise to simplify our tax code.



Intergenerational business succession made even more difficult. It has been a sore point with business owners for some time that the current tax rules applicable to the transfer and sale of a family business favour sale to an unrelated third party such as a private equity fund over the transfer of the business to a daughter or son. That’s clearly unfair and punitive. To his credit, the Minister has invited ideas and views on how to better accommodate genuine intergenerational business transfer. Unfortunately, the new rules as proposed by the Minister, specifically those related to treatment of capital gains, will make the transfer of a business to family members even more difficult and could lead to double taxation of some estates. The technical analysis of these proposals shows just how far reaching and punitive these new rules will be for small and medium family businesses in Canada – they fundamentally change the way private family owned businesses are taxed in this country. The proposed changes will have a direct negative impact on the operation of these businesses and the people they employ in just about every community from coast to coast in Canada. I respectfully request that you meet with the Minister of Finance on my behalf and behalf of all family businesses in Canada to express our concerns and to ask for a delay in order to

Kelvin Campbell, Owner/Operator of CSN Chapman Auto Body in Halifax, Nova Scotia, believes that the proposed tax changes are an issue that all bodyshop owners should address with their Members of Parliament.

conduct a more complete review of the proposals. When making fundamental change in tax policy like this, history supports a deeper study of the approach and options with much broader consultation than the 75-day period set out by the Minister. Respectfully, Kelvin T, Campbell CSN Chapman Auto Body Ltd. Halifax & Bedford Nova Scotia

October 2017  collision Repair  11

who’s driving?

followuP Missing this? Then you’re missing everything

By Jay Perry


ver the course of these columns, we have discussed several points about leadership essentials that, when practiced consistently, will keep you on top of your game. In addition to accepting that you can get better at leadership, we know we have to be specific in our goals, practice “active listening” and set “milestones” as we learn. That’s how we can measure and track our progress.

is key. I use it to immediately put into my schedule the follow up action on the appropriate date. If necessary, I will also schedule what I call “touch-points.” These are scheduled times to check-in with people to ensure they have not been sidetracked with what we agreed to get done. This communicates your serious attitude toward success, and highlights your commitment to positive actions and getting results.

when you follow up with them, you help set people up for success.

Now I would like you to turn your attention to another practice of good leadership that needs to be a keystone activity of yours. In my best-selling book, Success Manifesto, I speak of follow up. Think about this. You probably have so many projects, people, products or professional items on-the-go that it’s essential for you to develop a system of tracking and follow up that is fool proof. Did you know that when you follow up with people, not only do you reinforce the content of what you have discussed with them previously, but you also improve their perception of you as a leader? You get two major advantages for the price of one! You are both keeping people on track and improving your leadership image. The reason why the perception of you and your leadership will improve in the way your people view you is very simple; it communicates that you care! You care about getting better, making your company better and helping your people get better. You will have to collaborate with others as you work toward accomplishing your goals. To that end, you must have this system that will keep you on track as well as those with whom you collaborate. It doesn’t have to be complicated. It can be as simple as a spreadsheet or a notebook. For me, my day-planner 14  collision Repair

This is especially true of longer term projects that will require work over a period of time. It is easy for anyone, including ourselves, to get caught up with the day-to-day and be derailed off of even very important projects. So when you follow up with them, you help set people up for success in staying on track. Another aspect is that follow up demonstrates that you are sincere in seeking valuable input. When a staff member makes a suggestion, and you later follow up on that suggestion, it sends a clear message that you value the opinions of those with whom you work. It also sends a clear message when you don’t follow up. If you ignore suggestions or worse, pay empty praise to them, eventually people notice this and stop supporting you. Only with follow up that is sincerely meant to help others and is exercised in the most diligent way can you stay the one who’s driving. Jay Perry is co-author of the book “Success Manifesto” with Brian Tracy, and the founder of Ally Business Coaching, a process improvement and leadership development firm. He can be reached at


likejoedid Joe Schmidt left a legacy worth celebrating By Chelsea Stebner


askatchewan is a lucky enough province to have a plethora of amazing collision industry leaders. These are folks who have not only built successful collision repair facilities here in Saskatchewan, but who have also tried to better our entire industry by giving of their time and becoming involved with industry associations, with the insurance companies and within their own communities. This spring, we unexpectedly lost one of them. Joe Schmidt was one of those leaders. He was a quiet, determined and respected leader. He may have been quiet most of the time, but when he did speak, smart people stopped what they were doing and listened to what he had to say. When I first started in collision repair, Joe Schmidt and Tom Bissonnette were among the go-getters who stuck their necks out and vowed to make a difference in collision repair in Saskatchewan and throughout Canada. Joe and his wife Cheryl owned CARSTAR Collision Centres in Saskatoon, which Cheryl continues to operate. Joe and Cheryl have been extremely active

16  collision Repair

in their community, earning The Pride Award through CARSTAR Automotive Canada. The award recognizes businesses who serve their local communities. It’s hard to think of anyone deserving it more. Joe and Cheryl have also been strong supporters of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation of Canada. In addition to that, Joe had a great love for his heritage, and served as President of the local German Cultural Centre. Joe was a family man through and through. Cheryl tells the story of meeting Joe when her brother introduced them at a power boating event in Augusta, Georgia. They then met again at a different power boating event in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and went on their first date. Exactly three months later to the day, on October 24, 1992, they were married and Cheryl moved to Saskatoon. Joe and Cheryl were soon blessed with their daughter Anna. Nothing made Joe happier than spending time with his family. Industry wise, Joe served as President, in addition to many other roles, with our local associations, Saskatoon Auto Body Association (SABA) and Saskatchewan


Association of Automotive Repairers (SAAR). In addition to that, Joe was an instrumental member of both the negotiating committee and the technical committee when dealing Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI), our provincial insurer.

whether you are a shop owner, manager, supplier or insurer, take the time to get involved in your industry. Speak up and share your talents. Not only will you better your own career, you help to better our entire industry. Take time to get involved in your community. Put in

take the time to get involved in your industry. speak up and share your talents. Bill Ziebart is SAAR’s Executive Director and knew Joe well. “One of the most outstanding things about Joe was his great perspective of industry as a whole. Joe was able to remove his own wants and needs as a shop owner,” he says. Bill’s statement speaks to the tremendous value Joe brought to moving the entire collision repair industry, not just his own business, forward in our province. He was never afraid to get involved when he was needed. Joe was also a valued member of the Motor Safety of Saskatchewan and the CARSTAR Store Advisory Council. I could say so much more about Joe and the life he led, but I think the most important lesson he gave us was simply to do as he did. As leaders of our industry,

the effort and time to give back and make a difference locally. Most importantly, always make sure to take the time you need to enjoy the journey and the moments with your family and those around you. Leave a legacy worth celebrating. Like Joe did.

Chelsea Stebner is a co-owner/operator of Parr Auto Body, a collision repair facility located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. She can be reached at

October 2017  collision Repair  17

Dear John

threekeys Want more profit? Follow these three steps

By John Scetta


t won’t be news to any of the shop owners and managers out there, but there’s a high cost to doing business today. A lot of this can be attributed to the heavy burden of increasing technology. We have little to no choice about this. We need to be able to continue performing quality repairs. We need to follow OEM guidelines. That means paying for the necessary equipment upgrades and training staff so they have the right skills and information to perform those repairs. It’s just that simple.

you using right now, arguing with insurers about estimates? Thoroughly researching and documenting the necessary repair procedures won’t eliminate those arguments, but it will reduce them significantly. Thorough research is your first opportunity for maximizing profit. Don’t think about it as profit at that point, though. It’s just what you need to fix the car. Making sure it’s complete and thoroughly documented will lead to more profit and less wasted time.

There are solutions available, but it’s up to you to put them in place.

What’s not simple is how you go about still creating a profit under those conditions. I’m not here to peddle doom and gloom. There are solutions available, but it’s up to you to put them in place. First, we need to determine exactly what technology you need to fix the cars in your shop. I put the emphasis on the word “need.” Do you need the absolute top-of-the-line? Maybe. You also might be able to do just fine with equipment that’s merely very, very good. You need to look at each and every equipment purchase very carefully. Make sure it does what you need. What you want is secondary. Second, we have to be much more careful when it comes to writing estimates. Eyeballing the car and depending on your experience isn’t enough anymore. These days, we need to go above and beyond hin terms of research. This is vital for writing a complete estimate, but there’s another factor at play here. Doing the research will give you the keys to explaining the estimate to the insurance company. Research takes time. No argument there. Consider this, though: How much time are 18  collision Repair

Step three rests on determining how you’re going to repair that vehicle as quickly as possible, without sacrificing quality or customer service, so you can get another car in the door. In general, people in our industry have become very good at step three. It’s the first two that continue to give us trouble. Processes can always be improved, but if the shop doesn’t have enough trained personnel, the right equipment and the right research and estimates, the processes won’t mean much to overall profitability. Are there areas of your operation you’d like to improve or questions you’d like to ask? You can send anonymous questions through, and watch this space for answers! John Scetta is the General Manager of Performance Collision & Restyling in St. Catharines, Ontario. He can be reached via email to john.scetta@

Point Blank With Piercey


am Piercey was a true original. As the co-owner of Budds’ Collision in Oakville, Ontario, Piercey was always willing to share his opinions and experience with other members of his industry, both in person and through his popular column in Collision

Repair magazine, Point Blank with Piercey. We are pleased to share some of Piercey’s most insightful columns in this space in

support of the Sam Piercey Foundation, which awards bursaries to outstanding students in autobody and car painting. Donations and commitments can be made online by visiting and clicking DONATE NOW. This will take you directly to Canada Helps, a secure payment platform for online donations. In the Fund drop-down menu, choose Sam Piercey Foundation (a fund established by Budds’ Group of Companies). Alternatively, donations may be directed to Sam Piercey Foundation, c/o Budds’ Group, 2454 South Service Rd West, Oakville, Ontario, L6L 5M9.

FOLDING MONEY We need bills, not pocket change

By Sam Piercey

Sam Piercey was the co-owner of Budds’ Collision Services in Oakville, Ontario. He passed away on July 24, 2016, as a result of complications arising due to leukemia.


he lion is out there, and he’ll get us if we’re not careful. It seems to me that a lot of collision repair owners are kind of like sheep: placid enough as long as there’s food and shelter. Get them scared and they start to run off in all directions. Who can blame them? We’ve all seen at least one staff member move on to a trade or a business that pays better. Not to mention, their new career doesn’t usually require them to constantly upgrade their skills just to stay current. Plumbing doesn’t change much. Electrical doesn’t change much. But bodywork? Oh boy. When the manufacturers change the models to high-strength steel or aluminum or carbon fibre, who has to pay for new tools and training, again and again and again? It’s us. It’s totally up to us and I’m starting to think it always will be. When we need to upgrade the facility or even build a new one to match the current reality of what we need to do, who pays? It’s up to us again. The majority of profits from a business should go back into a business. Improving it, upgrading it and making sure it’s ready for the future. That’s just the way it works. The trouble is, what do you do when the profits being returned don’t cover the investment needed to upgrade? A lot of owners over the past 10 years have decided to simply close their doors and sell out. Others bite the bullet and go to the bank.

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Business owners have been doing this for hundreds of years, in the expectation that the new investment will let them make enough profit to cover it. What if it doesn’t, though? What if they’re still paying off last year’s investment when a new challenge comes along? The answer is pretty simple, again: they close up or go to the bank again. We all like to complain that there are no apprentices coming into the trade, or that they’ll come in and go back out again. There’s a good reason for this. You need an enormous level of skill to be a body tech these days. You need to be technically minded, good with people and willing to spend your working life learning new techniques. It’s a rare combination. The ones who have it are often tempted by another career path. Unless they absolutely worship cars, they’re probably just going to seek that other career. Why not? A young kid these days has to pay the bills, just like we did, and collision repair may not give them what they need. Our overhead is getting bigger. Put in all the lean processes you like, you’re still paying more in taxes, paying more for your tools and training and paying more for your business and workplace safety insurance. We’re paying more for our utilities too. Gas, heat, hydro ... it all adds up and the bill is always rising. Paint and materials aren’t free, either. So what’s the answer? Simple. We need more money, right across the board.


BacktoBasics Solid grounding is the best way to advance

By Andrew Shepherd


ollision repair is a team effort. When a member of the team advances, the team as a whole moves up. That’s part of the reasoning behind I-CAR’s Professional Development Program (PDP). The PDP exists to train collision repair professionals in essential role-relevant knowledge and skills. It’s not an ivory tower program, handed down from on high. In fact, it was designed from the very beginning with extensive input from the collision repair industry. PDP training gives collision repair

(Estimator, Steel-Structural Technician, Refinish Technician and Non-Structural Technician), as well as speciality roles not required for Gold Class, such as Production Manager and Aluminum Technician. Training isn’t just about showing your insurance partners or the public that you’re keeping up with technology. We’ve got statistics that show a definite return on investment when it comes to training. Want to improve your key performance indicators? PDP training is one of the surest paths to do so. Shops that train on the PDP model show an average of a

we’ve got statistics that show a definite return on investment when it comes to training.

professionals and insurance auto physical damage appraisers the role-relevant information, knowledge and skills they need to perform complete, safe and quality repairs. Businesses that invest in PDP training benefit from improved business performance, enhanced employee development and reduced risks. In the PDP, each professional develops their skills through a distinct training path tailored to their role. The progressive training is designed to continually build upon their existing knowledge, and is regularly updated to reflect current collision repair techniques. For these reasons, the PDP is recognized as the industry standard for training in the collision repair industry. PDP training is available for both insurers and collision repairers. This time around we’ll concentrate on the collision repair program. The collision repair training program features distinct training paths that provide each person involved in the collision repair process the up-to-date knowledge and skills they need to perform their role successfully. The PDP for Collision Repair Professionals includes four roles that are required to earn the Gold Class recognition 22  collision Repair

5 perent increase in customer satisfaction, revenue growth between 5 and 10 percent and an average improvement in cycle time of 14 percent. Touch time improves by as much as 45 percent. The benefits are obvious and real. It’s been said that one of the best ways to attract and retain high-quality staff members is to provide them a clear and easy-to-follow career path. The PDP gives you that, all rolled up in one package. This enhances employee’s opportunities for career development while also improving employee retention for the shop. The PDP benefits the OEMs, your insurance partners, your staff and your business as a whole. It really is a win-win situation for all involved parties. If you’re not on it, why not start now? Andrew Shepherd is the Executive Director of I-CAR Canada, a non-profit organization that provides collision repair training and ongoing education. He can be reached via e-mail at




Simple Life A [TOP] The founders of Simplicity Car Care: Paul Prochilo, Domenic Prochilo and Domenic Ieraci. The new network was founded on the principle of making service and repair as simple as possible for customers.

Simplicity Car Care aims to provide it for customers and franchisees By Erin McLaughlin

new network has been launched in Canada with one vision: Make car care simple and affordable for every vehicle owner in the world. “Our plan is pretty simple,” says Domenic Ieraci, President of Simplicity Car Care. “Vehicle management is getting more complex, and consumers have to go to various service providers to take care of their car’s variety of needs.” The team heading Simplicity Car Care hopes to change this, moulding car care—what they consider to be an overly-complicated and inconsistent service—into something predictable, seamless and affordable. Simplicity Car Care will service the entire life cycle of the vehicle, while providing convenience for Canadian motorists. “Collision is a core competency of what we do, but we also provide complementary services, such as mechanical, glass, detailing and tires,” Ieraci says. “We service the entire life cycle.

Quite simply, we wanted to make it more convenient for Canadians to go to one place, as opposed to going to three or four different service providers.” Aside from convenience, there are substantial economical benefits to supplying all vehicle needs in a single location. “We intend to integrate complementary services in our business and leverage economies of scale,” says Ieraci. The business model also helps to hedge risks against the possibility of reduced demand for collision repair as cars become increasingly advanced. Domenic Prochilo, one of the co-founders of the new network, notes, “We provide our clients with one central location where multiple needs can be addressed. We’re looking to reinvent the customer experience and create a place where customers feel confident by improving both the ease of using our services and accessibility to our services.” October 2017  collision Repair  25


Domenic Ieraci and Paul and Domenic Prochilo in a strategic planning session. The network was only launched recently but has already signed up several shops. This is due in part to the network’s ability to offer franchisees systematic and efficient processes that were crafted over years.

The co-founders have developed and implemented systems and technology to achieve these customer-centric goals. First, they aim to service each customer in a way that suits their unique lifestyle and availability in an effort to create a more seamless and customised experience. “We were inspired by Amazon, in that they’re able to eliminate any barriers for their consumers,” says Paul Prochilo, Chief Executive Officer of Simplicity Car Care. In an effort to eliminate barriers, customers can use an online booking tool to set up appointments, and receive automatic status updates on their phone or email throughout the repair. Customers coming into a Simplicity Car Care facility will also be asked a series of questions to help staff systematically tailor their services in a way that is specific to their needs. “In this world of instant gratification, we’ve adapted,” says Ieraci. “We’re in the customer service business. Car maintenance is just the function. No matter what service we’re providing, customer service is our main goal. The key thing we’ve learned is to always deliver value to the customer first and success will follow.”

“We were inspired by Amazon, in that they’re able to eliminate any barriers for their consumers.” - Paul Prochilo As the company grows, the founders are taking steps to ensure that their high-standards for quality are maintained and replicated in every single shop that calls itself Simplicity Car Care. To do this, they follow careful procedures with selection and training processes that mirror the automated and systematic techniques surrounding their customer service practices.

26  collision Repair

“When we’re in the selection process, we check for two main factors. We look for a proven track record demonstrating the facility’s social and ethical commitment to their community. Second, we look for shops that are motivated to improve the business, and are passionate about the industry,“ says Domenic Prochilo. Paul Prochilo adds, “We’re very passionate about the business we’re in, and we need our franchisees to share this.” After selection comes extensive training. “We’re looking for a full franchise effect, a full immersion into our system,” says Paul Prochilo. “We want to be the Tim Horton’s of car care. When you go to a Tim Horton’s and you ask for a double double, you know exactly what you’re going to get, at any location you go to, anywhere in the world. We want to offer that same consistency and reliability.” To achieve this, every new franchise undergoes a comprehensive six-week training program. “We intend to duplicate our corporate culture, and we strive to positively influence the values and beliefs of our franchisees,” says Domenic Prochilo. As well, they are currently recruiting a Regional Performance Manager (RPM), whose sole responsibility will be monitoring, mentoring, and training franchisees.


“We’re in the customer service business. Car maintenance is just the function.” – Domenic Ieraci What the co-founders understand through and through is that to have a happy customer, you need to first cultivate happy staff and franchisees. “We have to be happy ourselves before we can satisfy anyone else,” says Paul Prochilo. Given this philosophy, the three put an immense amount of work into improving the lives of their franchisees and are committed to helping each facility achieve personal as well as business success. In fact, Domenic Prochilo comments, “What makes me most excited about the future of this business is enhancing the quality of life for all those in our network.” To do this, Ieraci says, “We’ve implemented technology that allows the collision operator to manage the business, instead of the business

managing them. We use systems to infuse a degree of predictability. If you set sail with no destination in mind, you’ll drift aimlessly and never get anywhere worthwhile. If you have a target destination, with a sound plan and execution, you will arrive.” Simplicity Markham, the second franchisee to have joined Simplicity Car Care, is owned and operated by Joe Di Paolo. “We’re very excited to be working with such an innovative company like Simplicity,” says Di Paolo. “There were several other banner opportunities that were presented to me, but this was the right fit as we share a similar vision for the future.” Simplicity Car Care’s goal to provide all vehicle services is attractive to some shops looking to grow. Mario Ramos is the owner of Simplicity Car Care Brampton, one of the company’s most recent franchisees. Part of the reason he joined the network was to increase his company’s service offering. “We’re already set up to do mechanical work related to the collision, but it makes sense to increase it and offer more. The plan they have will help us build that part of the business,” says Ramos. Setting sail with a destination, a plan and a great team behind you will take you as far as the oceans go. The team at Simplicity Car Care and their franchisees have already shown that they’ve got a destination firmly in mind, and the determination to get there. For more information, please visit their website at

[TOP] The first Simplicity Car Care location in Scarborough. At time of publication, the network also has another Toronto location and stores in Brampton, Burlington, Thornhill and Markham. October 2017  collision Repair  27




Consultant Brad Mewes on mergers, acquisitions and the natural limits of consolidation


rad Mewes works closely with business owners to help buy and sell companies, and provides services in strategic advising and corporate finance. Mewes has spent a lifetime in the automotive industry, and is currently the Group Facilitator with APEX Performance Group, and the Principal at Supplement Mergers and Acquisition Advisory. He has spoken on topics including mergers and acquisitions at IBIS, SEMA and NACE.

Collision Repair magazine: In your view, is consolidation complete in the Canadian collision repair industry? If not, how far will it go? Brad Mewes: No, I don’t think consolidation is complete. Looking at Canadian consolidation and consolidation in the United States, Boyd has a large market share but there are still many independent operators and large independent MSOs. There is still a high degree of fragmentation, and there is still room for companies like Boyd, Craftsman Collision, Kirmac Collision and others to grow and take more market share.

In terms of how far consolidation could go, look to other highly consolidated industries and you will start to see a natural limit on consolidation when the top consolidators control around 75 percent of market share in aggregate. CRM: OEMs are getting progressively involved in the repair industry via certification and recognition programs. What do you think the long-term impacts of this will be? BM: The increasing role of OEMs will serve to increase the relative capital required to operate a collision repair business. As OEMs

28  collision Repair

enforce additional repair standards, it results in an increase of investments in training and equipment to meet those standards. It will be more expensive to operate a shop in the future as a result. CRM: How should insurers and shop owners react to these long-term changes? BM: It’s essential for shop owners to factor in increased investments of tooling and equipment. Often, small businesses get into trouble when they stop investing in growth—they need to rebudget to anticipate these changes and continue to grow.


“Often, small businesses get into trouble when they stop investing in growth—they need to rebudget to anticipate these changes and continue to grow.” Brad Mewes, Principal of Supplement Mergers and Acquisition Advisory, has spoken to global collision repair audiences at IBIS, NACE and SEMA.

The insurers base their prices on historical risk models. With the rapid change in vehicle technology and the increase in the cost of repairs, historical models may not appropriately factor in future severity. As such, insurers may be challenged in adjusting their pricing models in light of the evolving landscape. The debate around scanning is a good example of this. CRM: Boyd acquired Assured Automotive in May 2017, and has said it will continue to operate the Assured brand. What are the benefits of leaving the original brand in place after consolidation? BM: In Ontario, Assured is a big player. They have high brand recognition at a local level. This is an industry where local relationships and local brands still matter. From an insurer and customer relations standpoint, it’s beneficial to maintain that brand. Additionally, Assured has a relatively unique dealer intake model that Boyd’s management has indicated they would like to maintain. This is not unique to Boyd as they have maintained the Gerber brand in the US for decades.

Regardless, even if all those factors weren’t present, converting the brand image of an operation as large as Assured would take substantial time and resources that may be better deployed elsewhere. CRM: What does Boyd’s acquisition of Assured tell us about the changing North American market? What do you think the next big industry moves will be? BM: A year ago, Boyd stated that it would double revenue over a five-year period. With this acquisition they are well on their way to achieving this goal. Despite some concerns over autonomous driving technology (which at this point have actually increased frequency and severity) and increasing consolidation, there is still strong investor interest in the space. As a result, there will be continued appetite for growth and acquisitions, and I expect companies will continue such growth. CRM: How are the majority of leading companies expanding? Is this different from their expansion strategies in the past?

– Brad Mewes

BM: Historically, companies in collision repair would grow through acquisition, but in the last 12 to 18 months acquisitions have slowed down. Increasingly, we are seeing that some of the major companies are investing in brownfield and greenfield development, redeveloping locations to suit their needs instead of acquiring existing shops. It can be more cost effective. But acquisitions still continue at an aggressive pace, due in large part to the employee shortage in the industry. Across the industry, talent is in short supply and acquisitions continue to provide companies with an effective way to acquire talent in a tight market, while also expanding market share.

Executive Vision focuses on discussions with key players in the auto claims economy. If you would like to know what’s going on in the mind of a specific individual involved in the collision repair industry, please email editor@

October 2017  collision Repair  29


Green Manufacturing AkzoNobel opens world’s most sustainable paint factory BY JEFF SANDFORD


tock markets continued to reach new peaks over the summer, with a number of them hitting record highs in mid-September. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, the MSCI All Country World Index and the S&P 500 all hit new highs. Collision Repair magazine’s financial report helps sort out the news from some of the largest companies in the auto claims economy.


AkzoNobel’s new factory in the United Kingdom. Among other environmental technologies, the lighting runs on renewable energy, and the paint will eventually be made with captured rainwater.

Genuine Parts Company

P. Russell Hardin has recently been named to the board of directors for GPC, the parent company of UAP/NAPA.

AkzoNobel has opened what it says will be the world’s most sustainable paint factory in Ashington, UK. The new plant will cut emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) by recycling all its water and 90 percent of the solvents used to make paints, according to a report by Chemistry World on the opening. The production line will not have any open vats. Extraction points on the production line mean VOCs are fully contained and can be recovered and scrubbed. Any solvents that can be reused, are. The new AkzoNobel plant will rely on solar panels and, “... a biomass boiler that burns wood pellets from managed forests in the UK.” Even the lighting and employee showers are low-energy.

“AkzoNobel expects that each litre of paint produced will have a carbon footprint half that of products made at the replaced plants,” according to the report. The plant was also built in a basin so that, “... there can be no spillages into the outside environment. Surface water can be held in an underground reservoir, so that in an emergency there would be no soil or groundwater contamination from the plant.” The opening provides a bit of good news as AkzoNobel is just coming out of a disruptive takeover battle that strained relations with shareholders. The new CEO of AkzoNobel, Thierry Vanlancker, was quoted as saying that the new plant should be considered a “statement that AkzoNobel is pretty confident about its future.”

Genuine Parts Company (GPC), the parent company of UAP/NAPA, has announced that the board of directors has elected P. Russell Hardin as a new independent director of the company. Hardin is well-known in the philanthropy sector. He is President of the Robert W. Woodruff Foundation, the Joseph B. Whitehead Foundation, the Lettie Pate Evans Foundation and the Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation. Hardin also practiced law with the Atlanta firm of King & Spalding, the elite law group in Alabama where GPC is headquartered. Tom Gallagher, Chairman of GPC, said, “We are pleased to welcome Mr. Hardin as our newest director. Russ is an extremely talented executive with a wealth of management, business and legal experience and knowledge that makes him a valuable addition to our

board. We look forward to his contributions as a director of the company.” In other news, GPC has announced that it will acquire Alliance Automotive Group from private equity funds managed by Blackstone and AAG’s co-founders. The acquisition is valued at a total purchase price of approximately $2 billion US, including the repayment of AAG’s outstanding debt upon closing. The transaction has been approved by the Board of Directors of GPC and is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2017, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions and applicable regulatory approvals. AAG is the second largest parts distribution platform in Europe, with a focus on light vehicle and commercial vehicle replacement parts. AAG is expected to generate gross annual billings of approximately $2.3 billion US. October 2017  collision Repair  33


Boyd Group

Brock Bulbuck, CEO of the Boyd Group. The company closed a number of facilities in Florida and Georgia so staff could prepare for Hurricane Irma.

B oyd Group has issued a public statement as a result of the storms that battered the southeastern US in the recent months. As a publicly traded company, the organization is obliged to warn investors about material changes in business. The statement notes that, “... 55 of its 58 Gerber Collision & Glass locations in the state of Florida and three coastal Georgia locations have been closed to allow employees to prepare for the impact of Hurricane Irma.” T he c omp any ’s C E O, Bro ck Bu l buck, was quoted as saying that, “This decision was made to allow our employees and customers to focus on ensuring

they and their families are safe. Once the hurricane has passed we will support our local teams in evaluating the damage and resuming operations as soon as practicable. Our priority, however, will continue to be the well-being of our employees.” All of the closed centres have since reopened. B oyd Group Income Fund also announced that on November 2, 2017 it intends to redeem in full all of its then outstanding 5.25 percent debentures due October 31, 2021. The company has been reducing its outstanding debt. This can be considered part of that effort.

LKQ’s CEO Dominick Zarcone has confirmed that the company is distributing new OEM parts, in addition to its offering of recycled and aftermarket parts. Zarcone made the statement during a recent conference call. LKQ has made it a strategy to ensure that trucks making parts deliveries are fully loaded before they hit the road. By utilizing trucks to their fullest capacities, the company can save money. The deal involves some 1,100 stock keeping units (SKUs), including parts for the 2017 model year. Zarcone went on to say during the call that the company, “wanted to grow parts distribution, and its experience as a distributor of collision parts would be attractive to many companies.” However, it looks like LKQ may have to sell off some its assets. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in the UK detailed concerns it has with acquisition of Andrew

Page by Euro Car Parts, a subsidiary of LKQ. Apparently the CMA has identified 10 markets in England where the two companies were in close competition with each other. The CMA has indicated that LKQ should sell some locations to avoid these concerns. LKQ has also announced the appointment of Varun Laroyia as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Laroyia has a background in corporate finance, operations management, systems and mergers and acquisitions. Laroyia has been the Chief Financial Officer of CBRE’s Global Workplace Solutions business since 2015, following CBRE’s acquisition of the GWS business from Johnson Controls, where he was the Chief Financial Officer and VP of Information Technology since 2013. CBRE is a massive billion-dollar real estate outsourcing firm with 40,000 employees in 50 countries.


Quebec-based Uni-Select continues to expand globally. The company recently announced it had acquired UK company The Parts Alliance. The subsidiary has just made an acquisition of its own, buying up all the outstanding shares of Blackburn Brakes Holding Limited. Blackburn owns BBC Superfactors, which delivers parts in the Lancashire area of the UK. According to a press release, the company makes 1,000 deliveries per day in its market area, with 97 percent of orders delivered within one hour. Henry Buckley, President

and CEO of Uni-Select, was quoted in a press release as saying, “This acquisition strengthens our position in the UK market and underlines The Part Alliance’s capability of driving growth both organically and through acquisitions.” National Bank Financial increased its estimates for third quarter earnings for Uni-Select in mid-September. The company released a note to investors predicting the company will post earnings of $0.59 per share for the quarter, up from a prior forecast of $0.55.

Uni-Select Henry Buckley, CEO of UniSelect, noted that a recent acquisition strengthens the company’s position in the UK.

34  collision Repair

Dominick Zarcone, CEO of LKQ, has recently confirmed that the company is now distributing new OEM parts, in addition to aftermarket and recycled.


Magna International recently announced its MAX4 autonomous system, which combines cameras, radar, LiDAR and ultrasonic sensors, designed for easy integration with any automakers’ existing and future platforms. Magna has done away with the bulky rooftop sensors, instead integrating everything into the body of the vehicle.

20 Years?

Experts say it will be two decades before we see fully autonomous cars By Jeff Sanford


t’s going to be decades until the age of the autonomous vehicle (AV) is fully upon us, if the opinions of experts at the Technology in Motion conference held recently in Detroit are any indication. The event largely consisted of panel discussions, with academics and representatives of tech and car companies discussing the coming world of automated vehicles. One notion mentioned by a panel member was this: before these vehicles hit the roads in mass quantities, “... They must be able to communicate with each other, surroundings and people.” According to Kay Stepper, an executive with Robert Bosch, “One must not forget that we need to build these foundations first.” Another panel member, Carla Bailo of Ohio State University, predicted that, “The first thing to come is driverless shuttles on short, predictable routes …” These will come quite quickly. Some are already in operation and both Ohio State and the University of Michigan are implementing such routes this fall. Other panelists said that the mass introduction of

true AVs likely won’t occur for 20 years or more. Panelists also predicted that before true AVs appear, cars will be speaking to each other through onboard devices, and connected cars will share the road with traditionally driven ones. Stepper of Bosch was quoted by Crains Detroit saying that, “highly automated” cars could be available within 10 years. These cars will be able to drive on most roads, but, “... must always have a driver ready to take back control if necessary … in 10 years all vehicles should be connected. That alone will help with the fatalities and some of the safety issues. That’s the first step, if we can at least understand where we all are.” Chris Urmson would likely agree with the assessment that fully autonomous cars are still far off. Urmson is the former Chief Technology Officer of Waymo, Google’s self-driving car division. Urmson recently took part in a podcast prepared by technology publication Recode and noted that much progress is still necessary before AVs are a reality. October 2017  collision Repair  37


Chris Urmson, former head of Waymo, Google’s AV division, notes that it’s humbling to consider how easy some tasks are for human drivers, compared to how difficult the same tasks are for computers.

Audi has introduced the world’s first commercial vehicle to feature Level 3 automation.

“It’s humbling, as someone working in this space, how easy some of these tasks are for humans to do, and how hard they are to actually get software and technology to solve,” he said. Urmson also talked about the “lack of respect” that Detroit and Silicon Valley have for each other. “It’s very easy for Silicon Valley to look at the car companies and say, ‘Oh my goodness, they’re so slow, we’re going to disrupt them.’ And then it’s very easy for the car companies to say, ‘Oh my goodness, look at the Silicon Valley guys. They’re so seat-of-the-pants, how could they actually do anything big and complicated?’ Obviously, both of those statements are completely false,” said Urmson. Despite this, we would do well to remember that these folks are talking about fully autonomous vehicles, the kind that the Society of Automobile Engineers calls a Level 5. A Level 5 AV can pretty much do it all without human intervention. That’s the end point of self-driving technology, but significant inroads have already been made on the previous levels. Level 1 is basically driver assistance. As every repairer knows, many new cars essentially have this in the form of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). Level 1 is now old hat for the car companies, and at least one manufacturer has gone far beyond that level. We’re not talking about R&D here, folks. Audi has recently introduced what it says is the world’s first commercial vehicle to feature Level 3 automation, the 2018 Audi A8. In brief, a Level 3 AV can perform every part of the dynamic driving task, with the proviso that the human driver should remain ready to intervene if needed. Audi’s put some limits on that, though. According to Audi the A8 achieves, “... Level 3 autonomous driving mode for highway traffic jams.” In the case of the A8, the self-driving mode can only be engaged at

38  collision Repair

speeds under 60 km/h. That is, it’s only for situations where cars are moving relatively slowly. Audi is calling the self-driving feature the AI Traffic Jam Pilot. If you’re caught in a traffic jam you can leave the driving up to the car and read a paper. This may sound similar to Tesla’s Autopilot mode, but there are some crucial differences. The 2018 A8 is a sophisticated machine with an adaptive air suspension that utilizes optical cameras to read the road and light-based radar unit (LiDAR) generates a far better picture of what is around the vehicle than a Tesla receives. Tesla’s Autopilot only uses cameras. Autonomous vehicle development is ramping up here in Canada as well. The latest Canadian entry into this area is auto parts supplier Magna International, which launched its MAX4 Autonomous Driving Platform recently. The company is headquartered in Aurora, Ontario. Magna, as you might expect from an auto parts manufacturer, is developing an autonomous driving platform, rather than a complete vehicle. MAX4 combines cameras, radar, LiDAR and ultrasonic sensors that the company says is designed for easy integration with any automakers’ existing and future platforms. Magna has also done away with the bulky rooftop sensors that have been seen on many early AVs. Early LiDAR units had an unfortunate resemblance to an upside down bucket of takeout chicken. Magna is having none of that bulky look. Instead, MAX4 is designed to be integrated into the car’s body. The company claims parts of the system are either production ready or nearly production ready. The Max4 system will be designed so that, “... drivers can turn on the autonomous driving function using a button, and turn it off as they do cruise control by either tapping the brake or hitting a button.”


Part of this strategy involves the recent acquisition of Innoviz Technologies. The company provides a solid-state LiDAR technology that enhances Magna’s Level 3/4/5 autonomous driving sensor solutions. There are quite a few Canadian firms developing one kind or another of AV tech, but the other big Canadian player in the space is BlackBerry, through its BlackBerry QNX division. The company opened an autonomous driving research centre in Ottawa last December, and they’ve already done some tests. Just like Magna, BlackBerry QNX has no ambition to build its own vehicles. Instead, the company is concentrating on building a foundational operating system for autonomous vehicles. Most in-vehicle software is a series of separate components, such as blind-spot detection, lane-keep assist, pedestrian recognition, that aren’t able to talk to each other, according to John Wall, of BlackBerry QNX. “The software that’s in the car today, all these discrete components developed on very primitive operating systems … it’s not up to the task of what’s being asked of the vehicle in the future,” said Wall. “That’s why you need an operating system like we’ve developed to be able to handle that complexity.”

Audi’s 2018 A8 will feature Level 3 autonomy, the first commercial vehicle to do so.

It may seem odd that a cell phone company would get involved in this space, but the company has a few advantages that may not be immediately obvious. First, the company has significant relationships with many major auto manufacturers, as the largest provider of onboard infotainment systems. Second, there’s the company’s unmatched reputation for digital security. We’ve already seen several major news stories in the last year about “car

hacking.” Security for autonomous vehicles will be of utmost importance to prevent potentially deadly mayhem. These are clearly exciting times for BlackBerry QNX, but Wall seems to agree with some of the other experts quoted above. It’s going to be a long wait for those Level 5 vehicles to hit the streets. “I think truly autonomous is many, many years away,” he says.

October 2017  collision Repair  39

INDUSTRY EVENT CARSTAR North America held its first combined conference in Charlotte, North Carolina. The conference served to unite the US and Canadian divisions.

The Stars


CARSTAR North America comes together as ‘1NE’

By James Kerr


n the driver’s seat of a race car at the annual CARSTAR conference, I found myself turning sharply around a NASCAR track at 200 miles per hour. The engines were roaring, and the wind was tugging my car into the sidewall. It only took an instant to turn just too sharp, and I spun out on the track. For a moment I thought this conference would be my last. Fortunately, there was no fire, no real danger at all. CARSTAR brought its conference attendees this year to the NASCAR Hall of Fame, and made available to us a “track simulator”, a kind of video game inside a car. You get inside a real race car on rails, mounted on a conveyor belt, and video game magic takes care of the rest. Still, that’s as close as I want to be to that side of collision repair. It was a good tone to summarize the whole of the conference. It was energetic, exiting, and put everyone on track. This year’s conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, was named “1NE CARSTAR”, as a reference to US and Canadian operations coming together as one. The conference had over 1,000 attendees, making it the highest attended CARSTAR conference ever, according to the company. As with any unification of US and Canadian branches, there is always the fear that the bigger economic powers available to a US company means it will swallow its Canadian counterpart. This is not the case, according to Michael Macaluso, President, CARSTAR North America, who says that the Canadian business being lost among American concerns is an “impossibility.” “It’s not a Canada or US thing, it’s a CARSTAR thing,” said Macaluso. “Our strength is our community connections. The core foundation of our program is that we’re locally owned and operated.”

The insurance discussion panel at CARSTAR 1NE. The conference served as an educational opportunity for franchise partners, as well as a networking event.

Mike Piper of CARSTAR, Gloria Mann of Collision Repair magazine and Michel Gagnon of Mitchell. October 2017  collision Repair  41


Though the conference took place in the American south, its heart seemed Canadian. During the opening ceremonies, Oh Canada preceded the Star-Spangled Banner, and the longstanding CARSTAR Canada tradition of presenting the company flag was maintained, in all its twirling glory. Macaluso even gave some of his introduction exclusively in French, citing that 25 percent of CARSTAR’S franchise locations in Canada are in Quebec. It seems Canada will feature prominently in the company’s combined identity, but the message of 1NE CARSTAR was that of unity. John Harvey, Vice President, Insurance Relations Sales & Service at CARSTAR Canada, shared how the US and Canadian teams have come together. “We’ve created our own secret sauce,” said Harvey. “It’s not an American way and a Canadian way. This is now the North American way of repairing vehicles.” Arlo Johnson, Vice President of Insurance Relations at CARSTAR Auto Body Repair Experts, even hinted that Canada has a thing or two to teach our southern neighbours. “Canada is farther down the line in terms of performance-based agreements,” said Johnson, who believes these agreements are the future. “We’ve had more and more success with it. It will go deeper. 70 percent of Canada already has performance-based agreements. It’s the way of business.” Canada or US, it was all the same to 1NE CARSTAR. Macaluso added: “It doesn’t matter where your franchise location is. We’re all working towards the same goal.” United, CARSTAR North America looks towards the future. CARSTAR currently has 3 percent of the North American collision repair market under its banner, with 550 shops in the CARSTAR network. In Canada, the company intends to focus on growth in Quebec, British Columbia, and to capitalize on strong existing partners, according to Macaluso. CARSTAR has 65 locations in Quebec out of its 285 across Canada. Macaluso encourages attendees to “dream big, work hard,” with lofty goals for the year 2020 that include expanding to 1,000 shops and helping to fund a cure for cystic fibrosis. Sean Peters, Director of Driven Brands Charitable Foundation, explained the dedication that CARSTAR maintains towards its charity of choice, cystic fibrosis. It began in Canada, when a franchise partner’s granddaughter was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, over 20 years ago. Now, it has been adopted as the charity of choice, company-wide. CARSTAR has done its part to better the lives of those suffering from cystic fibrosis, having raised over $3 million towards cystic fibrosis research since it began its charitable endeavours towards the organization in 1994. When CARSTAR began donating, the average life expectancy of someone diagnosed with the disease was age 30. Today, thanks in part to the hard work of CARSTAR staff, store owners and valued partners, a person with cystic fibrosis has an average life expectancy of 50 or more, explained Peters. Michael Macaluso’s goal of ending cystic fibrosis by 2020 may not be so lofty after all. It seems like CARSTAR’s growth is advancing at race car speeds. It was a frequent comparison throughout the event that CARSTAR is a lot like a race car. In an interview conducted on stage by Jim Muse, Sales Director of North America for Axalta Coating Systems, NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon described the lean processes for race cars in a way any collision repair shop owner can relate to. “It used to be you could look around for one big thing to change and that would be it,” Gordon said. “Then the low hanging fruit was gone, and now you have to look to a million little things to improve.” Dean Fisher, Chief Operations Officer,w CARSTAR Auto Body Repair Experts, also compared the growth and workings of CARSTAR to a race car when he addressed the attendees in the closing ceremonies. “You’re part of the largest group of stores ever assembled in North 42  collision Repair

CARSTAR owner Frank Sottile and family. The CARSTAR conferences are always family affairs, since the earliest days of the network.

CARSTAR President Michael Macaluso and Don Morton of DonMor CARSTAR in London, Ontario.

Arlo Johnson, Vice President of Insurance Relations US and John Harvey, Vice President of Insurance Relations Canada.

Yves Robichaud, CARSTAR’s Regional Director for Quebec, with vendor partners Sindy Houle of Uniban and Eric Leveille of UAP/NAPA.

America,” Fisher said. “Our job is to keep you in the race. Your job is to stay in the race. Remember—real CARSTAR stores turn left. Together we can win through the power of being one.” By the end of the conference, attendees were motivated in leadership, inspired by out-of-the-box thinking, and fine-tuned on the message of CARSTAR—one company, working together. Closing the conference, Macaluso said, “We started off talking about CARSTAR Canada and CARSTAR US coming together. By the end of the conference we’re just talking about CARSTAR.” Next year’s conference takes place in Calgary, with the plan of alternating back and forth between Canada and US locations each year. For more information, please visit



Danger Zone

Some shops say they ‘never’ check OEM procedures By Mike Davey


hat keeps you up at night? If you’re like the majority of shop owners who responded to one of our recent surveys, then the answer is “hiring quality staff.” This was far and away the strongest answer from our survey respondents, with 50 percent of respondents indicating that this was the one item they worried about the most. Hiring quality staff was the clear winner, but it was far from the only response to this question. The other responses were much lower. In fact, three items (business taxes, government regulations and repair quality) received no answers at all. Clearly the repairers who participated in this survey aren’t unduly concerned about government interference and believe their staff are properly trained and equipped to handle the work. It should be noted that this survey was conducted before the proposed changes to small business taxes. The proposed curtailment of “income sprinkling” may lead to different answers if we were to conduct this survey again. Beyond hiring quality staff, the issue of greatest concern is that of growing revenue, with 17 percent of respondents stating that this was something they give much thought to. The answer “operational processes” was chosen by 14 percent of respondents as the area of top concern. Even taken together, those results don’t come close to the staffing issue. The other responses were training (8 percent), equipment (6 percent) and “Other” at 5 percent. In the case of “Other,” responses were generally along the lines of “Insurance companies.” We also asked shop owners and managers to tell us what they worried about the least. We did not see the clear winner that “Hiring quality staff ” provided us with earlier. The single highest rated answer was “Repair quality,” which netted 25 percent

What Keeps You Up At Night? 5

6 1




“Hiring quality staff” was the top-ranked concern for collision repairers that participated in our survey on top concerns, scoring at least twice as high as any other response. This is very much in line with what we’ve heard from repairers for many years: good people are hard to find. They’re so hard to find that some repairers have turned to hiring from outside the country.

Growing revenue (17)

Operational processes (14)

Hiring quailty staff (50)

Equipment (6)

Training (8)

Other (5)

of responses. Following that were “Business taxes” at 22 percent and “Equipment” at 14 percent. “Training” and “Government regulation” were the items of least concern for 12 and 11 percent of our survey respondents respectively. Rounding out the bottom on the “Least worried about list” were “Growing revenue” at 9 percent, “Training” at 4 percent and “Hiring quality staff ” at just 3 percent. We all know about the hiring issue. That’s why a different survey asked our readers to let us know how they hire. The first question asked participants if they’ve ever

hired outside of Canada. The majority of participants (60 percent) answered “No,” but a solid 28 percent answered “Yes,” with a further 8 percent of participants considering it as an option. Readers who indicated that they had hired from outside the country were also asked to rate their experience. The majority (44 percent) thought their experience was “Okay.” Both “Good” and “Very Good” received an equal percentage of 28 percent and no one answered “Poor” or “Very Poor.” Evidently this experience has been beneficial for most. October 2017  collision Repair  45

by the numbers

Scanning and Calibration Human resources are a big part of the equation that equals shop success, but repair quality and customer care are always going to be important. Scanning and calibration aren’t new topics in the collision repair industry, but significant discussions regarding those operations are still playing out between repairers, insurers and the OEMs. Another recent survey looked into the scanning and calibration habits of our readers. The first question in the survey was blunt: “Does your facility conduct pre- and post-repair scans?” The majority of respondents conduct these scans on at least some vehicles, but a full 15 percent of respondents indicated that they don’t scan. That’s a little less than the respondents who told us they conduct these scans on every single vehicle (18 percent). The majority (35 percent) scan if “We think the job may require it,” with an additional 7 percent indicating that they scan if “The OEM has released an official position statement saying it’s required.” Scanning itself is really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this topic. According to our sources at several OEMs, unperformed calibrations may be an even larger safety issue. The car may look good and drive just fine, but if certain systems needed calibrations they didn’t receive, the vehicle is unsafe. Our next question asked survey respondents to let us know what percentage of collisions they see that require some form of calibration. The single largest answer at 30 percent was that “10 percent or less” require a calibration of at least one system. In general, the answers drop off from there fairly steadily. According to our survey, 15 percent of shops say 11 to 20 percent of collisions require some form of calibration and 14 percent say it’s more like 21 to 30 percent. The next two answers were “31 to 40 percent” and “41 to 50” percent of collisions require calibrations, with answers of 9 and 7 percent respectively. However, it’s with the next category that things start to get really interesting. The final answer for this question was “51 percent or more,” meaning more than half of the vehicles that come into the shop require at least one system to be calibrated. Fully 25 percent of our respondents indicated that this was the case. That’s almost as many as those who told us that 10 percent or less

Have You Ever Hired From Outside Canada? 6 5





required calibration! There’s no way to tell from the data gathered, but it’s possible that at least some shops simply aren’t performing the number of calibrations that they should. That may be frightening, but it could be worse … and it is. Another survey we conducted recently looked into OEM repair procedures during both estimates and repairs. When it comes to writing estimates, 18 percent of our respondents indicated that they “Always” looked up the OEM procedures. A further 19 percent indicated they did this “Most of the time.” The majority (40 percent) indicated that they “Sometimes” consulted OEM procedures, with another 19 percent stating that they did this “Infrequently.” Finally, 4 percent of respondents indicated that they “Never” checked the OEM procedures during the estimating process. It is considered by some in the industry to be a best practice to consult the OEM procedures during the estimating process, but of course it’s possible to send supplements to the estimate. Just because a shop doesn’t do this during the estimate doesn’t mean they’re not consulting them during the repair. However, our survey seems to show that a disturbingly high percentage of shops are not looking up the correct procedures during the repair itself. This seems like it

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Yes (28) No (60) No, but we’re considering it (8) Other (4)

[TOP] The majority of our readers have not hired from outside the country, but a significant number have. Some readers who have tried unsuccessfully told us that they experienced significant roadblocks from government regulations.

by the numbers 30

What Percentage of Vehicles Require Cailbration? 25 15

14 9 7

10 percent or less

11 to 20 percent

would open the shop up to liability if it were found out that the work wasn’t done correctly. It might seem like you could let this slide on certain jobs, like a door ding or a small bumper hit. However, representatives of various OEMs have made it extremely clear that you should check the OEM procedures for every job, every single time. Systems that weren’t damaged in the crash may need to be recalibrated.

21 to 30 percent

31 to 40 percent

41 to 50 percent

Skipping this step may mean the system won’t function as intended. If it’s a safety or crash protection system, the potential for deadly catastrophe becomes obvious. Leaving calibrations aside, it’s possible that the OEM in question has changed the procedure since the last time you or one of your staff checked. Knowing the up-to-date procedures, and using them, will help to protect you and your customers.

Many modern vehicles require at least one calibration in the event of a collision, often even if the system itself wasn’t damaged. This chart shows what our respondents believe to be the approximate percentage of vehicles coming into the shop that require at least one calibration.

51 percent or more

The majority of respondents to our survey indicated they consulted OEM procedures during the repair process, at least in some cases. The single largest group, at 37 percent, checks the procedures for “All structural repairs.” An additional 26 percent check them “Always” and 25 percent check for “Some structural repairs.” However, fully 12 percent of our survey respondents indicated they “Never” check the OEM procedures.

October 2017  collision Repair  47


Andrew Shepherd of AIA Canada at CCIF Edmonton. Shepherd’s presentation looked at various disruptors set to impact the collision repair industry.



Latest meeting focuses on rising repair costs and future trends By Erin McLaughlin


he Edmonton meeting of the Canadian Collision Industry Forum (CCIF) drew together nearly 400 stakeholders from different corners of the industry. They came to collaborate, share ideas and collectively work to improve. Joe Carvalho, CCIF Chairman, spoke to this in his opening remarks. “This is a resilient, tough industry and we’ll get through whatever we need to get through,” he said. Michael Anderson, Senior Direction and Decision Sciences and Analytic Development at Audatex spoke first. His discussion revolved around how, as the number of parts within a vehicle increase, and as the type of technology and materials found in vehicles become more complex, the price of repairs increase as well. “Prices of repairs remained relatively flat until 2012,” he said. “In 2012 we start seeing much of the technology coming out in modern vehicles. We’re seeing a lot more parts on today’s cars, and it doesn’t take many more parts to drive up repair costs.” Anderson also pointed to increased prices in what may seem an unusual area: replacing grill emblems. The price of replacing these parts has increased by 37 percent since 2012. He also discussed aluminum, noting that over the past six years we have seen a 90 percent increase in its use. Over the next 10 years, aluminum is expected to increase by 110 percent. “We’re going to have to get used to it and the costs,” said Anderson.

Stefano Liessi followed Anderson, presenting “I-CAR New Technology and Education.” In his presentation, Liessi discussed trends for the future and recent technological advances. According to Liessi, 20 vehicle makers have committed to automatic braking by 2022. Despite the growing number of safety features found in modern vehicles, Liessi noted that there will always be collisions.

France Daviault of AIA Canada outlined some of AIA’s human resources initiatives, including the labour market intelligence project.

A panel discussion was next, moderated by Paul Prochilo, one of the founders of Simplicity Car Care. The panel members included Michel Caron of Audatex, Michael Gagon of Mitchell, Jean-Luc

October 2017  collision Repair  49


Larry Jefferies of Jefferies Consulting and Tifarah Senkow of Advantage Parts Solutions.

Loc Ngo of Cosmos Collision, Scott Wideman of Volkswagen and Frank Ponte of Car-O-Liner.

Sauriol of ALLDATA, Paul Stella of Toyota, Scott Wideman of Volkswagen, Bill Davidge of CARSTAR and Andy Raposo of Fix Auto Canada. The issues discussed include the high costs of OEM technology, the fact that the dealer network may not have the

opportunity to scan or calibrate every car after an accident, and the struggle members of the insurance ecosystem have with the anonymity of labour times. Prochilo said, “We’ve got to change our paradigm from brand protection to where we’re working on a paradigm to enhance the customer experience. Brand protection is too individualistic. I think the real question, and the real difficulty, is building a collaborative ecosystem in which brand protection is no longer a priority, but customer protection is.” A large portion of the conversation revolved around scanning. Every panel member agreed that scanning is absolutely necessary. Wideman commented on this, saying, “We’ve been trying to establish that it’s necessary that scanning needs to be done. The scanning process must be carried out. The bottom line is you must take care of this immediately. If you don’t learn to scan now, you won’t be able to handle the technology coming along with the introduction of AVs. If you disconnect any electronic part of the vehicle, it must be scanned.” Andrew Shepherd of AIA Canada was next, with a presentation called, “Disruption, Disintermediation, and Other Strange Words for the Collision Repair Industry.” The

50  collision Repair

Jay Perry of Ally Business Coaching and Gloria Mann of Collision Repair magazine.

question leading his discussion was what lies ahead with emerging technologies and disruptors. He dove into connected cars, and the uncertain role repairers will play in the growth of connected cars. He also discussed autonomous vehicles (AVs). “The Conference Board of Canada predicts that there will be 89 percent fewer accidents with the introduction of AVs,” he said. He also discussed electric vehicles, which are


Gary Laschuk of CSN Reflections and Michel Guerette of CARSTAR.

predicted to eventually become the majority. “2020 or 2050, it doesn’t matter. These things are going to happen and we have to get ready for it,” he said. One of the solutions Shepherd offered: “Expanding or transferring collision repair facilities into other related businesses. Maybe fleet repair or customization.” France Daviault of AIA Canada was next, with “Addressing the Labour Gap: Key Initiatives,” and outlined some of AIA’s initiatives to close this gap. AIA is working on the labour market intelligence project, funded by the federal government.

“We’re trying to get rid of the perception students gathered through surveys. With that smart people go to university and ev- this information, Marcil says we hope to get eryone else goes to trades,” she said. a better understanding of why young people Human resources expert Annabelle are entering the industry, and what factors Cormack spoke next, identifying obstacles faced in retaining talent, which include no recognition, leadership sty le, p eople feeling undervalued, lack of training and the glass ceiling. Then, she dove Dan Hogg, Alexandra Zalec and Elizabeth Wilcox of Fix Auto. into the meat of her discussion: the philosophy that recruitment and re- may be keeping them from doing so. One tention is the responsibility of everyone of the most interesting findings was that 88 in an organization. percent of the students surveyed are looking Patrice Marcil of Axalta finished out the for lifetime careers, rather than just a job. In day, with a presentation titled “Collision addition, 66 percent of surveyed students Industry-Education Connection Project: The said autobody was their first choice career. Student’s Perspective.” In this presentation, Registration for CCIF Toronto opens Marcil explored various opinions held by October 2, 2017.

October 2017  collision Repair  51




The 2017 SEMA Show in Las Vegas offers networking, education and a surplus of cool By Mike Davey


his year’s SEMA Show promises to be one of the biggest yet. The 2017 edition of the show takes place October 31 to November 3 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The SEMA Show has a lot to offer automotive professionals of all kinds, from racing and performance to body and refinish. Check out the guide below for a preview of some of the must-see events and attractions at this year’s show.

New Products Showcase [TOP] Hundreds of spectators line the streets for the 2016 SEMA Cruise. It’s the first chance for members of the public to view the stunning custom vehicles on display at the show.

The New Products Showcase is always one of the biggest draws. SEMA has announced a number of enhancements for 2017, including expanded operating hours, a Buyer Happy Hour and other features. The New Products Showcase is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day of the event and will include a New Products

Happy Hour on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. “The New Products Showcase is an essential part of the SEMA Show. Thousands of buyers and media representatives visit the Showcase to discover leading trends, and participating exhibitors rely on it as a tool to generate awareness of their products and brand,” says Peter MacGillivray, SEMA VP of Events and Communications. October 2017  collision Repair  53


While at the New Products Showcase, you can use the scanning devices provided to create a personalized list of products that are of particular interest. Details for the products scanned will be provided when you return the scanner, complete with company name, booth location and more. Another option for maximizing a visit to the New Products Showcase is to attend the New Products Happy Hour on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday evening. Complimentary beer and popcorn will be available from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Visitors will also be able to use the scanning devices during this time. This year’s New Products Showcase is expected to include nearly 2,000 product entries.

OEM SUMMIT OEM Collision Repair Technology Summit sessions are part of the Society of Collision Repair Specialists’ (SCRS) Repair Driven Education series. This year’s Summit will address the impact that automotive research has on vehicle construction and functionality, the impact that construction and functionality has on performing once-commonplace procedures and the impact that OEM procedures (or failing to implement them) have on liability and safety. The first panel, “How Automotive Research is Driving Change in Vehicle Design, Technology and Function,” will be moderated by John Waraniak, SEMA, Vice President Vehicle Technology. Panelists include M. Scott Ulnick, Managing Principle of Ducker Worldwide;

Scanners that allow SEMA Show attendees to effortlessly acquire product information were introduced at the New Products Showcase in 2016. This year’s Showcase features extended hours and other enhancements.

Matthew Doude, Associate Director of the Center for Advanced Vehicular Systems (CAVS); Doug Richman, VP of Engineering for Kaiser Aluminum, and Barry Dorn, VP of Dorn’s Body and Paint. This panel promises deeper insight into the research going on today that has the potential to reshape how you repair vehicles tomorrow. The second session, “The Impact of Advanced Vehicle Systems on Routine Repair Process and Procedure,” will be

At the OEM Summit in 2016. From left, moderator Steve Marks, I-CAR Industry Technical Support Manager; Advanced Collision Repair Solutions President Oliver Woelfel; Wielander+Schill Chief Engineer and Director Klaus Reitzig, and Jason Scharton, 3M Automotive OEM Business Development Manager. Photo by John Huetter of Repairer Driven News.

54  collision Repair

moderated by Kaleb Silver, Senior Product Manager for Hunter Engineering. The panelists will be Aaron Lowe, Auto Care Association, Senior Vice President, Regulatory and Government Affairs; Scott Kaboos, American Honda, Assistant Manager, Collision and Dean McConnell, Continental Corporation, Director, ADAS Business Unit, Global Customer Programs, NAFTA OEMs Chassis & Safety Division. New technology is rapidly advancing and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) are becoming increasingly popular, with significant effects on how you perform previously routine operations. Silver will present on challenges facing the industry, and the impact of advanced systems on routine services such as wheel alignments. After the presentation he will welcome the panel to discuss the growing complexities facing the repair marketplace. The Summit will conclude with a look at what might be one of the most critical challenges currently facing collision repair facilities. “The Hidden Dangers of Vehicle Technology, Improper Repair Methodology and Your Liabilities” will be moderated by John Ellis, Managing Director, Ellis & Associates. Panelists include attorneys Todd Tracy and Erica Eversman, as well as Mark Allen, Collision Programs Director for Audi of America and Aaron Clark, former collision repair facility owner.


Battle of the Builders The SEMA Show is justly renowned for the wide variety of eye-catching custom vehicles on display every year. Exhibitors enlist top vehicle builders to create custom cars and trucks, and more than 250 of these builders are set to go head-to-head in the 4th annual SEMA Battle of the Builders competition. The winner will be announced during the nationwide television taping at SEMA Ignited on Friday, November 3. “It’s great to see the amazing array of vehicle builds at the SEMA Show each year,” says MacGillivray. “It’s inspiring to watch the SEMA Battle of the Builders competition, as we meet the builders and learn about the products and stories behind the cars and trucks.” This year’s competition includes special recognition for all builders aged 27 years or younger. The regognition is called Young Guns and participants within the category enter the contest with a vehicle at the SEMA Show. The competition and its builders, vehicles, and manufacturers are profiled in a one-hour television special that will air in 2018.

Cam Miller, owner of HS Customs and the 2016 winner of SEMA’s Battle of the Builders, with “Under Pressure,” the customized ’69 Camaro that won Miller the crown in 2016.

SEMA IGNITED SEMA Ignited is the official after-party of the SEMA Show, and the only part of the show the public can access. It takes place November 3. Roughly 1,500 custom-built vehicles will roll out of the convention centre to parade

down the Vegas Strip for the SEMA Cruise, eventually arriving at the SEMA Ignited event. It’s quite a spectacle, and huge crowds attend every year. Admission to SEMA Ignited is free for SEMA Show attendees. For more information, please visit

October 2017  collision Repair  55


A basic website and lacklustre social media isn’t enough in today’s landscape of mediasavvy motorists. Professional services can help you open the door to this brave new world.

Digital Revolution New services can help push your web presence to new horizons By Josh White


he digital world is moving forward every day and becoming even more important, but that doesn’t mean there are more hours in the day to deal with those increased responsibilities. It’s no secret that keeping up with social media, a website and customer reviews along with running a business can be very time consuming. Fortunately, shop operators now have internet and marketing savvy services to help them with their digital presences needs. Everyone already knows the power of word-ofmouth advertising. You can think of the web and social media as word-of-mouth, but everyone’s been handed a megaphone. There is a lot more to building and maintaining a solid web presence than many people think. It’s not just about staying active on social media

or having a slick website. The web can be a central way for shops to build relationships with customers. There are many different outlets where shops can interact with customers and establish connections. Marcus Mackell from Mitchell 1’s SocialCRM explained the importance of these services within the auto industry in a recent interview with Collision Repair magazine. “It’s critical to be aware of what consumers are saying about your business, and to be able to respond quickly,” he said. “Using Facebook and Twitter to be where your consumers and prospects are, and giving your consumers a chance to share their experience with others online, can go a long way in building good consumer relationships and trust.” October 2017  collision Repair  57


Kirk Ziegler of Turnkey Body Shop, a firm exclusively dedicated to helping bodyshops build a strong web presence. Ziegler views websites, customer interaction and SEO as significant aspects of building business.

Mitchell 1’s SocialCRM works on building customer relationships through online interaction. It emphasizes the importance of customer communication before, during and after the time their repair is complete. The focus of what they offer provides an opportunity for the customer to be a part of the repair process. Some of the key features offered include automated emails with appointment reminders, follow-up links and promotions. Mitchell 1 also provides website design, online appointment setup, reports, logo design and digital visibility. Another crucial aspect of keeping up with business online is the ability to be found and remembered. Many new customers choose their shop based on what they can find online. This means having a well designed website that can easily be found and stands out from competitors. Search engine optimization, a feature often offered by these services, aims to bring your website to the attention of clients looking for a shop. Kirk Ziegler is the founder of Turnkey Body Shop, a firm that specializes in digital presence and web design for the collision repair industry.

“A lot of businesses are coming online in some fashion, it can be easy to get lost in them,” said Ziegler, who notes that these specialists services work towards making sure shops get noticed, not lost in the online crowd. Turnkey Body Shop aims to make its websites look the best they can. It operates through the idea that an eye grabbing design can get its clients the attention they deserve. Ziegler says the company also uses other features to ensure that the website not only looks good, but is easy to find. According to Ziegler, a key component of what Turnkey Body Shop provides is a unique website management software that makes online maintenance easy. They also feature search engine optimization, coupon design, video editing and up to 20 business email accounts. Beyond customer relationships and searchability lies content. First and foremost, it must capture the attention of the customer. With so many social media sites, there are many avenues to establish an online presence. This means taking advantage of popular trends such as video production to make businesses stand out. Many web development services try to incorporate this into what they offer.

“Think of the web and social media as word-ofmouth, but everyone’s been handed a megaphone.”

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From left: Slevin Zhang, Full-Stack Developer; Andrew Harrison, VP Growth and Innovation and Hafiz Kanji, Product Manager for S3, a technology start-up launched by Audatex and tasked with developing cutting edge digital products. The company’s first product is RepairMatch, a web app that matches clients with shops that have bays standing idle.

Marcus Mackell, Market Manager for Mitchell 1’s SocialCRM, emphasizes the importance of communicating with customers through the entire service process to establish a relationship. This communication can be done through social media, email services and review interactions.

The offering by another digital “A brand is no longer what automotive specialist, eMarketing we tell consumers it is—it is Sherpas, is nothing if not comprewhat consumers tell each other hensive. The company offers various it is,” said Terlep. “Today’s tools to manage your facility’s online connected consumer does image, sales and customer interacnot trust your brand. The tions. Among other offerings from messages they trust are oththe company, eMarketing Sherpas’ er consumers like them. The products include The Demand Engine, consumer takes a couple of difa sales tool; The Review Engine, an ferent steps. When it comes to online reputation management tool; awareness, they’ll think, ‘How The Social Media Engine for managing can I find a nearby business to your shop’s social presence; The Sales take care of my problem? How Engine, designed to help improve does this business compare to closing ratios and increase sales, and others in my area?’ One of the other products based around the Frank Terlep, first things today’s consumer founder of eMarketing Sherpas. same model. is going to do is to go to an Frank Terlep is the company’s online directory. Once they’ve founder. He has more than 30 years of tech expe- gone to Google or Yelp, they’re going to go to the rience in the automotive, collision repair and claims business website.” industries. Terlep has held executive positions at Optima Automotive is another web service AkzoNobel, Mitchell International and Carstation. company that has a strong focus on getting busicom. He is a past Chairman of Collision Industry nesses found online. According to the company, Electronic Commerce Association (CIECA) and has the aim is to make sure customers will find the launched shop management systems for autobody shop when they need it. Among other standard and repair organizations. He notes that we’ve seen services, it also provides directory management to fundamental changes to the way people think about ensure its clients’ business information is accurate businesses and brands. on the top online directories and listing services.

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Two sites designed by Turnkey Body Shop. A modern collision website should be easy-tonavigate, memorable and provide customers with the ability to set appointments, read reviews and stay in touch with you.

Internet presence has become particularly important with the introduction of apps like RepairMatch. Developed by Audatex’s “start-up” S3, RepairMatch helps motorists find shops that have empty bays and want the work. The app also provides customers with reviews to help them choose. “Customers post jobs in just a few taps. We inventory the requests so local shops can say ‘Sure, bring your car in at such and such a time.’ If it’s slow at 3:00

p.m. on a Tuesday, you can go on the app and find a job that can be scheduled during that time,” said Andrew Harrison, VP of Growth & Innovation for S3. The idea is simple: shops and consumers sign-up at Consumers looking for collision repair or mechanical work post their job to the site, and RepairMatch recommends a market average price to complete the service. Shops within the selected radius of the consumer’s location have access to the job requests. If a shop has room to take on the job, a match is made and the shop uses the built-in scheduler to recommend some times. The consumer selects from the available times, pays a deposit, and is provided full information on the work provider. After the transaction, both parties review each other as RepairMatch requires 4+ star ratings for consumers and suppliers to remain on the network. There are many ways to build your business and establish or solidify your reputation. The traditional methods of community engagement, charity drives and sponsorships remain as important as ever. However, the younger generations want to see you online as well and will base much of their opinion on how your company presents itself. Strengthening your digital presence just might take your business from good to great.

October 2017  collision Repair  61

presented by

Report on Training

Tropicana graduates 2017 Autobody Pre-Apprenticeship class Tropicana Employment Services has recently graduated its 2017 class of pre-apprenticeship autobody repair students. The 16 students who graduated were celebrated for their hard work, dedication and passion, while all attending looked ahead to a promising future. As Imad Bajwa, one of the graduating students put it, “This graduation is just the start.” This ceremony marked the end of a five month autobody repair program that taught students not only how to weld, paint and repair, but also nurtured positive attitudes and teamwork. “Tropicana gave me a career, and an opportunity to grow,” said Michael Samuels, another graduate. Marc Tremblay, the Pre-Apprenticeship Program Coordinator, told the audience, “Tonight is going to be a celebration.” And that it certainly was. The hall in which the ceremony took place was buzzing with conversation, laughter, proud students and parents. One mother was seeing two of her sons graduate—she was practically glowing. Speeches of congratulations soon followed. Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Education started it off. “Somehow,” she began, “You [Tremblay] worked it out that on the week of back to school, I’m right here where I’m supposed to be.” She continued, “Knowledge is something you own, and no one can take that away from you. You are well on your way. You know that you can do it because you have come this far. Become a licensed technician, because it is in your grasp. So reach out and grasp it.” Tremblay announced the gifts the graduating class were going to receive from various sponsors, whose kindness and generosity, Tremblay added, helped make Tropicana’s pre-apprenticeship autobody program what it is today. “This is one of the most amazing industries I’ve ever worked with. I’ve never seen a group so unselfish,” said Tremblay.

The 2017 graduating class of Tropicana’s Pre-Apprenticeship Training Program and Mitzie Hunter (centre), Minister of Education.

PPG, one of Tropicana’s most recent sponsors, is giving every graduating students a free paint certification class. Collision Industry Information Assistance is offering each student a free estimating course . All of this was topped off with I-CAR Canada, donating full Platinum I-CAR Scholarships to the entire graduating class. The reaction from the students in the audience was enough to know that these classes would not go unappreciated. Tremblay had one last bit of homework for the graduating class. “I have a challenge to this class: give back.” Tropicana is contributing to the industry’s strength through nurturing students who care about bettering their community. “I have one thing to say about Tropicana students,” he said. “They always succeed.”

AMi launches professional designations for Estimator Role The Automotive Management Institute (AMi) has developed two new professional designations for the Collision Repair Estimator role. The new designations were developed in conjunction with I-CAR and require I-CAR training to satisfy technical damage analysis requirements. “The new designations, represent 14 months of industry work to identify and develop requirements, which include AMi, I-CAR and Information Provider training and ASE B6 Certification,” said Jeff Peevy, AMi President. “The designations also require elective credit hours from AMi approved industry training providers, teaching estimating related topics.” AMi has introduced two new professional designations for estimators: Accredited Collision-Repair Two levels of designations are available, Accredited Estimator (ACE) and Accredited Master Collision-Repair Estimator (AMCE). Collision-Repair Estimator (ACE) and Accredited Master Collision-Repair Estimator (AMCE). These designations require multiple elective for their collision repair accreditations.” categories of training and professional achievement, including business “The collision repair estimator needs wide ranging knowledge and related and soft-skills, technical damage analysis and information provider. skills to serve as the link joining customer, insurance, and repair shop,” “The joining of two esteemed professional designations, I-CAR said Tim Zilke, ASE President and CEO. “We are proud to offer the Platinum and AMi ACE/AMCE, strengthens and reinforces the ASE Damage Analysis and Estimating Certification. The inclusion professionalism of the Estimator role, a role that is critical to the of this certification is further proof of the pivotal role of estimators collision repair process,” said John Van Alstyne, CEO and President of within the broader collision repair industry.” For more information I-CAR. “This move further builds our relationship with AMi, which about AMi’s Estimator Designations and their requirements, visit started in 2016 with our Production Management coursework as an October 2017  collision Repair  63

Report on Training

presented by

I-CAR introduces the Art and Science of Estimator Interactions Collision repair cannot start unless the estimator has earned the customer’s keys. To better equip collision repairers with the knowledge and skills they need to develop and present quality repair estimates, I-CAR has launched a new course designed to focus specifically on exploring the Estimator Professional Development Program (PDP) role. The course, “The Art and Science of Estimator Interactions,” will allow students to participate in activities that will sharpen their skills in communication, conflict resolution, estimating, and customer service. These traits are important in the repair process as the estimator ensures that customers fully understand the work that needs to be done. This four-hour class will take place in the classroom, led by I-CAR instructors. The topics discussed will include how to properly communicate with the customer and the insurance company, complete the estimate, and obtain estimate approval. “I-CAR understands that the collision repair process starts the minute the customer calls or brings their vehicle into a shop,” said I-CAR Director of Curriculum and Product Development Josh McFarlin. “Knowing how to give a proper and accurate estimate, all while maintaining excellent customer service, is a key part togaining and maintaining business profitability.”

I-CAR has launched a new course designed to focus specifically on exploring the Estimator Professional Development Program (PDP) role.

Students will be able to use documentation, photos and effective communication to apply the art and science of estimating. The course fulfills New Technology training requirements as well as serving as an Annual Training option for the Estimator role. For more information on the program please visit I-CAR’s website, at

Axalta offers distance education options for painters Axalta announced enhanced refinish learning and development offerings, available to customers in Canada and the United States. This program will include live virtual training classes, and successful students will receive an enhanced Master Certification. Axalta’s live virtual training, which covers the same curricula taught at Axalta’s Learning and Development Centers, will offer a solution for paint technicians who recognize the value of face-toface learning, but are unable to travel long distances. There will be over two morning sessions, and a qualified refinish instructor will train participants via a live, interactive, web-based broadcast. Axalta’s enhanced Master Certification program allows refinish technicians who complete 100, 200, and 300-level courses in person, online, or virtually to earn a Master Certification in Refinish after completing a 400-level course. 400-level courses are exclusively offered at Axalta’s state-of-the-art Customer Experience Center located on the Hendrick Motor Sports campus in Concord, North Carolina. “Our learning and development programs are carefully designed with the participant’s experience in mind,” said Patrice Marcil, Axalta’s Director of Customer Experience, Americas. “From a virtual course, to a program at our world-class destination like the Customer Experience Center, we are deeply committed to providing

Patrice Marcil. AMi has introduced two new professional designations for estimators: Accredited Collision-Repair Estimator (ACE) and Accredited Master Collision-Repair Estimator (AMCE).

the content, delivery methods, and experience that exceed the expectations of our customers.” Learning and development programs are designed to improve customer performance by developing skills to help eliminate waste, reduce costs, keep cycle time to a minimum, and increase retention. For more information, visit products-services/training.html.

CIIA to host Certificate of Qualification prep courses in Ontario Collision Industry Information Assistance (CIIA) has scheduled four new Certificate of Qualification prep course to help unlicensed techs complete Ontario’s provincial trades license exam. CIIA will offer the courses in London, Ottawa and Vaughan/ Belleville. The format is four full days. The course in Ottawa runs on two consecutive weekends, starting on Saturday, November 4 to Sunday November 5. The course continues the following weekend on November 11 and 64  collision Repair

November 12, and requires students to attend for all four days. Attendance at all four days is required. Details on other courses are yet to be released. According to CIIA, most employers who have employees attending the class are eligible for training fee rebates from the government totaling two-thirds of the course cost. For next stesps, contact CIIA at 1-866-309-4272 or via email to


Coyote Group Budds’ Collision hosts prestigious performance group meeting By Mike Davey


[TOP] Members of the Coyote Group tour Budds’ Collision in Oakville, Ontario. The facility received the Coyote Group Shop of the Year award at the previous meeting in Palm Springs.

hop owners from across North America were recently treated to a tour of Budds’ Collision in Oakville, Ontario. About 50 repair professionals representing nearly 100 collision centres took part in the tour of the facility, which has a reputation as one of this country’s most progressive and advanced collision repair shops. The touring owners are all members of the prestigious Coyote Group, a gathering of elite shop owners who come together to discuss best practices and compare benchmarks. Each year the Coyote Group grants the Shop of the Year award to one organization. The winner is selected based on a variety of measures including employee retention rates, community values, business mix and the volume of the shop (as measured per sq. ft.). Budds’ Collision took home the Shop of the Year award at the Coyote Group’s February meeting held in Palm Springs, Florida.

Simply being accepted into the Coyote Group is a high bar to clear. Membership is strictly controlled and requirements are strictly enforced. Prospective members need to belong to an organization that generates at least $3 million in sales a year. Shops have to apply Six Sigma policies and be upstanding members of the industry, among other things. “You can’t remain a member if there is a change of ownership or control. You can’t miss more than three consecutive meetings. You have to be willing to submit financial data. You need to be a progressive shop and be open to change,” says Martino. “You also have to have the right mix of DRP, OEM and dealership relations and be focused on best practices while repairing vehicles to OEM specifications. These are the most sophisticated, progressive shops in the industry. It’s the group to belong to.” October 2017  collision Repair  67


As the Shop of the Year award winner, it fell to Budds’ Collision to host the most recent meeting of the Coyote Group. “They wanted to see what we were doing differently, and how we do what we do,” says J.R. Martino, General Manager of Budds’ Collision. “During the tour, we had stations set up with representatives from some of the vendors that we use, so vendors could speak on the tooling they’ve provided us with.” Those stations included representatives from Dedoes outlining the Acet paint mixing machine, RS Finishing discussing the company’s Wolf spray booths, and representatives from FinishMaster and ComCept providing information on Budds’ Collision’s lockers and material control management system. These essentially take the form of vending machines, automating inventory control and ensuring material usage is properly tracked. Sam Piercey, the former General Manager of Budds’ Collision until his tragic passing in July 2016, was a long-standing member of the Coyote Group, and a mentor to Martino. Under Piercey’s leadership, Budds’ was an early adopter of lean processes and Six Sigma, as well as the first facility in Canada to install a

The ‘vending machines’ at Budds’ Collision. Provided by FinishMaster and ComCept, the system helps to automate and streamline inventory control.

full aluminum room. Aluminum repair facilities have become more common over the years, but Martino notes that the facility has stayed on the cutting edge. “There’s over $1 million invested in our aluminum repair capabilities, including three different types of aluminum welders,” says Martino. “During the tour, we outlined our processes, which are somewhat unconventional compared to traditional shops. We have the technicians

68  collision Repair

themselves writing larger estimates, and we have certain types of equipment that allow us to do repairs that some shops would shy away from.” This includes not just aluminum repair, but carbon fibre replacement. This is a very rare authorization indeed. Shops in the Coyote Group are often considered to be among the elite, but even they had rarely had a chance to get up and close and personal with the necessary procedures.


“We were one of the first shops in Canada authorized to replace carbon fibre,” says Martino. “In fact, we were able to outline the process for the Coyote Group members. We had a BMW i3 in the shop when they came through. When they came in, we had the repair mapped out and the disassembly was complete. They could see the process we were going to follow.” Budds’ Collision has a long-standing reputation as an innovator in Canada’s collision repair industry. Steve Gallace is Ontario Regional Manager for 3M, a company that has had a relationship with Budds’ for many years. “Budds’ has always been an innovator in the industry,” says Gallace. “Sam was always great for bringing young techs onboard, as well as giving back to the community. J.R. has done a great job of stepping into that position. He’s earned the respect of the production and office staff.” After the tour, Coyote Group members returned to the host hotel, Park Hyatt in Toronto, for a question-and-answer session. The meeting concluded the next day as Coyote Group meetings always do: by taking a hard look at numbers.

“We dive into the numbers and talk about which financial measures are working and which ones aren’t. It’s extremely comprehensive. You really get to know what you’re doing,” says Martino. For more information, please visit:

In addition to the tour of Budds’ and the meeting itself, members of the Coyote Group had a chance to sample some Canadian delicacies, including poutine and the eponymous Beavertails.

October 2017  collision Repair  69

repair trends

Future of



aul Stella is the Collision Repair and Refinish Manager for Toyota Canada. Stella recently sat down with Collision Repair magazine to discuss construction details on new models, updates to Toyota Safety Sense/ Lexus Safety Systems+ and the difference between customer service and customer satisfaction.

Paul Stella of Toyota on what we can expect in 2018

Collision Repair magazine: Broadly speaking, what can we expect from Toyota and Lexus in 2018? Paul Stella: Recently, Toyota introduced the all-new 2018 C-HR and launched a completely redesigned 2018 Camry. Lexus also added the 2018 LC to its lineup, and an entirely transformed 2018 LS will go on sale in Canada early next year. These new models were built using the Toyota New Global Architecture and the Global Architecture-Luxury platforms. This new approach to platform and powertrain design uses ultra-high strength steel for the body and lightweight materials (aluminum and carbon fibre) on select models to reduce weight, increase body rigidity, deliver superior handling and more dynamic performance. In models such as the Lexus LC, the use of self-piercing riveting allows these different metals to be securely joined where traditional welding methods are unsuitable in place of spot-welding. Several other Toyota and Lexus models have also been refreshed for model year 2018, including the Toyota Yaris Hatchback, Prius c, Sienna, Sequoia, Tundra, and the Lexus NX. Almost our entire lineup of 2018 models are equipped with standard Toyota Safety Sense or Lexus Safety System+ packages, 70  collision Repair

Advanced electronics continue to proliferate. The 2018 Camry features Entune 3.0, which connects drivers to a variety of apps. With available Entune Safety Connect, drivers can take advantage of a stolen vehicle locator, Emergency Assistance (SOS) button, Enhanced Roadside Assistance and Automatic Collision Notification.

which may include active safety features such as Pre-Collision System (with Pedestrian Detection), Lane Departure Alert, Automatic High Beams, and Dynamic Radar Cruise Control. Toyota Entune and Lexus Enform – a new suite of advanced in-vehicle connectivity services – are also available on some of our 2018 models. These technologies help drivers stay connected with apps that provide access to Slacker, Yelp, sports, stock results, fuel prices and more. Safety Connect is also available on some 2018 models, which may include automatic collision notification,


stolen vehicle locator, an emergency assistance button and enhanced roadside assistance. For more details visit or CRM: How do these new construction techniques and safety features impact the repair industry? PS: It is important for collision repair professionals to research Toyota/Lexus repair procedures found in the Toyota Information System (TIS) as part of the repair plan so that accurate estimates are written and approved by the bill payers, and so that

repair trends

Toyota and Lexus are rolling out new body construction techniques and materials for several vehicles in the 2018 line. This cutaway diagram shows the presence of various materials in the 2018 Lexus LC500. Materials used include carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP), aluminum and several grades of steel.

repair technicians follow proper repair procedures. Several safety features found in Toyota/Lexus vehicles will require calibration, initialization or even a test drive after a repair to ensure proper operation. More information about Techstream and TIS is available at CRM: What challenges does Toyota foresee in the collision industry? PS: Newer vehicles are being repaired using techniques and procedures that may have been suitable five to 10 years ago, but may no longer apply to today’s vehicles, especially with the introduction of materials such as highstrength steels, aluminum and carbon fibre. Another example is windshield replacement. Just a few years ago windshield replacement was a straightforward repair. Today, the windshield can have a heads-up display imbedded in the glass and mounted cameras that form part of the advanced safety systems. As a result of these complex features, Toyota only supports the use of Genuine Toyota/ Lexus parts for repair. The camera, once removed and re-installed, requires calibration using Toyota/Lexus scan tools, Techstream, and special targets. If proper calibration of the camera is not performed, it’s possible that the Toyota Safety Sense/Lexus Safety Systems+ systems may give false or inaccurate warnings and not operate as originally designed.

“Just a few years ago windshield replacement was a straightforward repair.” – Paul Stella. CRM: You’ve mentioned before that there’s a difference between customer service and customer satisfaction when it comes to autobody repair. How are they different? PS: I get the opportunity to travel to many collision centres in Canada and the US and I see things that the collision industry does well and things that can be improved. I see customer satisfaction and customer service as separate items. The collision industry does a great job providing customers with amenities that may enhance satisfaction, including free Wi-Fi, refreshments, nice waiting areas and keeping them informed during the repair process. They often employ friendly staff and give customers on-time delivery, loaner cars or alternate transportation, and the vehicles are usually washed and often detailed before being given back to the owner. But customer satisfaction is more than these experiences. Customer service, on the other hand, is the process of catering to customers’ needs


through professional services – and this is where I see the collision industry can improve. This includes items such as pre- and post-repair scans or health checks; road tests after the repairs are complete, calibration of electronic systems, the use of an OEM scan tool, researching and following OEM repair procedures, having the proper tools and equipment, using Genuine Parts and training from the OEM or I-CAR. And for facilities not already doing this, parts carts are a great solution for storing damaged and new parts during vehicle repairs to avoid leaving these parts being stored in or on the vehicles. October 2017  collision Repair  71

Regional News | British Columbia

‘Drastic action’ needed to fix ICBC’s financial crisis Mismanagement of the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) “goes back years,” according to a statement from BC’s Attorney General David Eby. The statement came in the wake of news that the BC government is limiting ICBC rate increases for drivers, while embarking on a multi-year plan to fix the public insurer’s financial crisis. ICBC ‘s premiums are the second highest in Canada, and yet are not high enough to cover the true cost of claims. More accidents are occurring on BC’s roads, and the number and average settlement of claims are increasing. “Drastic action is needed to fix ICBC’s

devastating financial crisis, but B.C. drivers should not be forced to pay 20 percent basic rate hikes today because of mismanagement that goes back years,” Eby said. ICBC had its largest financial loss in the organization’s history last year, losing more than half-a-billion dollars in 12 months. Drastic action will include an operational audit and moving forward with a pilot project to evaluate distracted driving reduction technology. A dangerous roads initiative will be introduced with the goal of identifying and retrofitting infrastructure, regulations and signage where needed.

BC’s Attorney General, David Eby, recently outlined new initiatives to put ICBC on better financial footing. The initiatives include rate increases for motorists, and plans to examine technology intended to reduce distracted driving.

Lordco Parts offers BC fire support Lordco Parts extended its support to help fund the firefighting efforts over the course of British Columbia’s devastating wildfire spread earlier this summer. With a province-wide state of emergency declared and more than 230 fires, 14,000 evacuees left their homes and places of employment while 1,300 firefighters worked endlessly to help reduce the stress of the blazes.

Lordco’s 100 Mile House and Cache Creek locations had been affected by the evacuation, and others were on alert. In addition to supporting their employees in the affected areas, Lordco put forth a $25,000 contribution to the Canadian Red Cross and another $10,000 to the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) to assist in funding supplies, safety equipment and required product to help aid their efforts.

72  collision Repair

One of Lordco Parts’ facilities in Cache Creek, British Columbia. Lordco has put forth a $25,000 contribution to the Canadian Red Cross and another $10,000 to the Emergency Operations Centre.

A view of the shop floor at Royal Auto Collision. The shop is designed for maximum efficiency and flow.

Fit For Royalty Royal Auto Collision prides itself on top notch equipment and training


t Royal Auto Collision, we are proud to be partnered with CAA, Wawanesa Insurance and The Co-Operators through their respective preferred vendor programs. We feel that they have chosen to partner with and endorse us because we are at the forefront of our industry in factory quality collision repairs. We have heavily invested in topof-the-line equipment. We have further invested in training our technicians to properly and best utilize that equipment to produce repairs that meet factory standards. To meet this need, we use the Chief 3D measuring system and a Celette frame machine in our dedicated aluminum room. We utilize a combination of welders such as the Wielander and Schill IP6-2 InvertaPulse and the Miller Diversion 180 Aluminum welder. To reach those difficult areas, we also have an Invertaspot GT squeeze type resistance welder to do both sides of a panel at the same time. As we are the repair facility of choice for the local Ford dealership, a lot of this equipment is necessary to restore these vehicles to their preaccident condition. For any aluminum panels that need to be sanded, we use the Eurovac Aluminum Sanding System which traps all of the aluminum dust in a containment unit. Our two brand new Saima spray booths are very efficient and are specifically designed to work with the challenges of the water based paints that are in use in our industry today. Our capacities go beyond passenger vehicles. To meet the challenges of larger vehicles, one of our spray booths has a higher cabin height

Customers always receive the Royal treatment. The facility’s waiting room echoes what you’ll find in the back: a spacious, modern and pristine environment.

to accommodate vehicles such as cube vans and other service vehicles that would not normally fit inside the average spray booth. Richard Barnes, our Customer Service Manager, believes in the importance of staying up-to-date. It’s a philosophy embraced by the entire team. “The industry is constantly changing and we constantly update and innovate to stay ahead,” he says “We hold regular I-CAR classes inhouse with their instructors and also through their online independent learning courses. We also have many manufacturer sponsored ‘Lunch and Learn’ programs that entice the technicians to learn about industry trends and new materials and equipment, all while enjoying lunch in our facility.” Another reason insurance companies have chosen to work with us is our in-house mechanical department. We have 11 hoists and our own four wheel alignment machine.


We also have the latest in air conditioning technology as we are a Honda Canada repair facility and they have been early adopters of the R-1234 refrigerant. We also press all our own bearings and springs in-house and we have a tire balancer as well to assist in reducing cycle time for mechanical repairs. We are truly a one-stop-shop that is fully equipped and trained to handle all aspects of collision repair in the Mississauga area. Call or drop by and we’ll be happy to show you just what sets us apart. For more information, please visit Royal Auto Collision 1725 Sismet Rd, Mississauga, ON, L4W 1A6 905-282-1622

Alberta | Regional News

Fix Auto Airdrie expands with newly renovated facility Since joining the Fix Auto family a year ago, Fix Auto Airdrie has added a new owner/partner and moved to a newly renovated 8,500 sq. ft. facility. According to Peter Polito, General Manager for Fix Auto Western Canada, the new operation offers nearly six times more production capacity than the previous Fix Auto Airdrie location. “This is another milestone for Fix Auto and a testament to successful business partnerships,” said Polito. “We are very pleased to have the Fix Auto brand associated with these two gentlemen, whose values of integrity, reliability and superior customer service so accurately reflect our own corporate values.” Fix Auto Airdrie opened under the ownership of Mike Davis in June 2016. Shortly thereafter, Davis and Miller joined forces and took on the challenge of bringing a greatly expanded Fix Auto enterprise to this growing market. “This isn’t my first business partnership with Dave,” said co-owner/ operator Mike Davis. “Our partnership extends to locations in Calgary and Lethbridge. It’s a formula that works and we both feel that Airdrie is a community worth the investment. We are passionate about our industry, take pride in our work, and are proud to support the community and people who live and work here. It’s those values that have made our partnership under the banner of Davis Auto Group such a success.”

Dave Miller and Mike Davis, co-owners of Fix Auto Airdrie. Miller and Davis are also partners in locations in Calgary and Lethbridge.

The new location boasts new office space and production areas, an estimating bay, paved parking and 18 stalls of vehicle storage space. This is in addition to their already comprehensive facilities and equipment line-up that includes automotive detailing and corrosion prevention.

Newest Distinctive Auto Works location hosts grand opening

Distinctive Auto Works (DAW) recently held a grand opening event to celebrate its third location. The chain, which first opened its doors in 2008, is aimed at owners of luxury vehicles. More than 150 guests were treated to live music, sparkling beverages, and cuisine prepared by noted Westin Hotels & Resorts Executive Chef Geoffrey Caswell-Murphy. According to a statement from the company, the Edmonton facility is DAW’s largest and most luxurious yet. The facility is 27,000 sq. ft. and equipped with the latest in paint booths, factory-certified repair benches and a computerized Naja laser measuring system from Celette. The facility also has anti-static pre-paint and heated nitrogen spray paint systems. The first Distinctive Auto Works opened in Calgary in 2008 and is the only Mercedes-Benz-certified collision repair centre in the city. The three DAW shops are under the corporate umbrella of the Craftsman Group, which owns Craftsman Collision. “Opening Distinctive Auto Works was an evolutionary move for our company,” says Craftsman owner and founder Bill Hatswell. “Many luxury brands are particular about who gets to repair their

Bill Harbottle, President of Jim Pattison Auto Group, and Bill Hatswell, President/Owner of Distinctive Auto Works and the Craftsman Group.

vehicles, and in the case of Audi and BMW, they even mandate the use of their particular tools and techniques. We want drivers of all vehicles, even the most elite and luxurious, to have access to the highest levels of service and repair quality. Opening DAW has made this possible, and the new Edmonton location is the jewel in the crown.”

Uniparts OEM expands to Alberta Uniparts OEM is heading west as it expands to Alberta. Currently serving bodyshops across the provinces of Quebec and Ontario, where the company represents over 250 OEM dealers, Uniparts OEM now aims to expand across the country as a leader in OEM wholesale parts distribution, according to Vice President Mike Kaplaniak. “Growth is one of our main goals in this expansion. After supplying genuine OEM parts in the provinces of Quebec and Ontario for 20 years, this is a big step for us as we move towards being a national supplier,” said Kaplaniak in an interview with Collision Repair magazine. The company has been growing since it began in Laval, Quebec in 1997. With its inception in Montreal, growth throughout the province

of Quebec and expansion to Ontario, the company now has 17 employees, most of them on the road representing OEM dealers and serving bodyshop customers. The company now enters western Canada with aims to continue serving autobody shops with all brands, from Acura to Volvo. As a ProgiParts supplier since 2009, Uniparts will offer new OEM supplier choices for existing ProgiParts users in Alberta. “During our initial evaluations, we realized there was a need for our services to both the OEM dealers and bodyshops. The expansion is a definite step towards our goal of national recognition. Alberta is the first step to western Canada,” said Kaplaniak. For more information, please visit OCTOBER 2017  collision Repair  75

Regional News | SaskatchEwan

UCC’s Mobile Estimate Service hits the road

The UCC Mobile Estimate Service van carries a mini-estimating facility, and is stocked with a laptop with Bluetooth and wireless printer.

Customers appreciate convenience - especially when it comes to collision repair. That’s why the response to Universal Collision Centre’s Mobile Estimate Service has been so enthusiastic. Universal Collision Centre has two locations in Regina, Saskatchewan. In a recent interview with Collision Repair magazine, General Manager P.J. Morris filled us in on how the idea came about. “I was at a performance group meeting, run by Bob Dubreil of AkzoNobel, and Joe Giocolo of Precision Autobody outlined the idea to me. It sounded like a great idea.” The beauty is its simplicity. Universal’s mobile estimate van only contains a laptop, Bluetooth, and a printer. But meeting customers at their convenience can make the process significantly easier. “It’s been a popular service,” says Morris. “In the first month, we did about $8,000. Now we’re at about $14,000 a month. We’ve had a 100 percent closing ratio on estimates done this way.” According to Morris, customers love the convenience, but it’s also convenient for the shop. Instead of customers dropping by for estimates or asking for quotes over the phone the estimator goes to see them at a mutually agreed upon time. This means overall greater efficiency in the estimating process. The Mobile Estimate Service supplements Universal Collision Centre’s two locations, one at Rochdale & Pasqua and the new 1st Avenue location. For more information, please visit

Repair shop fire A collision repair centre in Kamsack, Saskatchewan is temporarily closed after a fire this past week. The Kamsack Times reports the fire department was called to Blaine’s Auto Body on First Street. “Firemen attempted to enter the building through the front door, but were turned away because of heavy smoke … They entered the rear door, again facing heavy smoke, but were able to open the large garage door in order to ventilate the building … As the smoke cleared the firefighters discovered that a vehicle that had been in the shop for repair was fully engulfed in fire … Although the cause of the fire is still undetermined, it seems probable that it had to do with the vehicle’s electrical system,” according to the report. 76  collision Repair

Manitoba | Regional News

St. Claude Autobody Manitoba first with Toyota certification

The team at St. Claude Autobody. The facility is the first in Manitoba to achieve Toyota certification under the new program.

Toyota Canada has recently recognized St. Claude Autobody as an official Toyota Certified Collision Centre. The facility is the first independent autobody shop in Manitoba to meet the new requirements of the Toyota certification. As of time of publication, St. Claude Autobody is one of only six shops in Canada to meet the newly revamped requirements of the Toyota Certified Collision Centre Program. CSN-Brimell Paint and Collision Centre in Toronto was the first Canadian collision repair business to qualify. “We’ve been working extremely hard to stay on top of all the recent changes in the collision repair trade,” said Norm Bruneau, owner and General Manager of St. Claude Autobody. “We are extremely pleased that Toyota Canada recognized our efforts and are willing to count on us as one of their certified repair centres.” In a recent statement, Paul Stella, Manager of Toyota Canada’s Collision Repair and Refinish Program, outlined that it’s about more than returning vehicles to pre-accident condition. It’s about returning them to original factory specifications to ensure that customer safety is not compromised. While most Toyota certified repair facilities are dealership owned, dealers without an in-house repair facility can designate an independent shop of their choice to become certified as long as they meet the Toyota requirements.

Portage Toyota has chosen St. Claude Autobody as their repair facility of choice to ensure that their customers receive certified repairs. “Customer safety has always been a focal point here, so it was important for us to work with a qualified repair facility,” said Doug Thompson, General Manager of Portage Toyota. “We’ve had a great working relationship with St. Claude Autobody over the years and partnering with them was the right choice for us and our customers.” For more information on St. Claude Autobody, please visit

Toyota Canada has recognized St. Claude Autobody as an official Toyota Certified Collision Repair Centre. October 2017  collision Repair  77

Regional NEWS | Ontario

CSN Automacs Collision qualifies for Audi Hybrid certification CSN Automacs Collision, owned and operated by the Ingoglia family, is the first collision repair centre in the country to achieve certification under the new Audi Hybrid program. Audi is rolling out the new program to ensure repairs to the new 2017 Q7 are carried out properly. The Q7 is of mixed-material construction, thus the “Hybrid” part of the name. Santo Sarta of CSN-Automacs Collision walked us through the new program and some of its requirements during a recent visit to CSN Automacs Collision. “There’s a big investment in equipment and training,” says Sarta. “Audi is a very elite luxury brand, and they seem to be a step ahead as far as repair procedures are concerned.” Scott Wideman is the Collision Program Manager at Volkswagen Group Canada. He describes the new Audi Hybrid program as being similar to the current Audi Structural Aluminum program, but with some key differences due to vehicle construction. “To put it in perspective, the Audi TT released in 2016 uses the Audi space frame design and was the first vehicle to incorporate the hybrid construction principles. It’s a completely integrated structure, where even the vertical panels are structural items,” he says. “The Q7’s body structure is designed differently. With the Q7, we’ve moved to more of a rivet bonding process, so the requirements are different. But, you still need

From left: Santo Sarta and Adrian Ingoglia. CSN Automacs Collision is the first collision repair centre in the country to achieve certification under the new Audi Hybrid program.

an aluminum area, the approved welder, riveting tool, vacuum system and aluminum tool set. It’s definitely an achievement for CSN Automacs.” According to owner Steve Ingoglia, the facility will continue to evolve. “We’re always pursuing certification,” says Ingoglia. “You can’t rest when you’re in collision repair. You have to keep moving forward.”

Fix Auto Barrie North achieves CCIAP accreditation Dar yll O’Keefe, General Manager of the Ontario region for Fix Auto, announced that Fix Auto Barrie North has achieved recognition under the Canadian Collision Industry Accreditation Program (CCIAP). “We had purchased the necessary equipment, including compression and aluminum welders, laser measuring system and vacuum sanding systems,” said Kim Roberts, Office Manager at Fix Auto Barrie North. “I-CAR training was our biggest focus— understanding this is very important for our technicians to stay up-to-date on repair processes and technology. We implemented a plan to have everyone complete one independent learning course per week over a six-week period.” The shop is currently I-CAR Gold Class in Progress, which is one of the requirements needed to achieve the CCIAP accreditation. The facility has two employees that are I-CAR Platinum. “The Roberts’ family has been part of the Fix Auto family since 2003, and have been active participants in all of our initiatives throughout their tenure as strategic partners,” said

From left: Todd Roberts, Kim Roberts and Greg Dunn of Fix Auto Barrie North. Fix Auto Barrie North has recently achieved recognition under the Canadian Collision Industry Accreditation Program (CCIAP).

O’Keefe. “Their focus on improvement and industry leadership is a testament to their dedication, and our shared vision of the Fix Auto brand driving forward.”

CARSTAR expands with new Cambridge appraisal facility CARSTAR Cambridge Appraisal has officially launched. According to CARSTAR, the new facility will provide greater convenience to those in the Cambridge, Ontario, area, and offer the same services as CARSTAR Cambridge, including full collision repair, glass repair and glass replacement. This will serve as a satellite location in the Ridgehill Ford dealership, with all service going to CARSTAR Cambridge. CARSTAR Cambridge Appraisal and CARSTAR Cambridge are owned by the LC Group, which is comprised of Ian Ladd, Peter Chavez, Osmar Nunez and Allen Mattice. “We know how quickly Cambridge is growing, and the need for additional presence in the city was crucial to better service our customers,” said Mattice. “The success we’ve had at our CARSTAR 78  collision Repair

Cambridge location is a direct result of our devotion to providing premier customer service and expert collision repairs, and we’re committed to exceeding these expectations at our newest location.” Jean-Marc Julien, Regional Development Manager, commented: “Allen and the entire LC Group are true professionals who prioritize customer service above all else. This group of like-minded individuals are a wonderful representation of our CARSTAR brand, and we’re so excited to have them on our team and support them as they continue to grow their network.” CARSTAR Cambridge is currently pursuing I-CAR Gold Class certification, as well as growing its list of dealer certifications with the aim of staying ahead of ever-advancing industry standards.

QuebÉc | Regional News

Carrossier ProColor Sainte-Julienne obtains Clé Verte certification Carrossier ProColor Sainte-Julienne has taken significant steps to reduce its environmental impact. This has now been recognized with Clé Verte Platinum certification. The Carrossier Procolor network is a member of CSN Collision Centres. Developed and managed by Nature-Action Québec, Clé Verte is a voluntary environmental certification program recognizing automotive service centres for the environmental methods they employ. Carrossier ProColor Sainte-Julienne joined the Clé Verte program in 2009 and is now one of the few Quebec-wide collision repair centres to be awarded the Clé Verte Platinum certification. Platinum is a certification given to those who have achieved the Gold level on two consecutive occasions. “We were motivated by the desire to make an environmental difference in our region and to be responsible for the management of our waste and paint residues,” said Gilbert Beaulieu, Carrossier ProColor Sainte-Julienne’s Body Shop Manager. To attain Platinum level, Beaulieu and his team acquired a shed where toxic waste such as paint residue and interior bins for recycling and normal waste are stored. Also introduced were energy-efficient lighting, recyclable paper and paperless customer records.

Carrossier ProColor Sainte-Julienne is now certified Clé Verte Platinum. Clé Verte is a voluntary environmental certification program providing automotive service centres with recognition for the environmental methods they employ.

Gold Class MD Mécaniques nets I-CAR MD Mécaniques, a CarrXpert shop located in Saint-Isidore-de-Laprairie in Québec, completed its training and has obtained its Gold certification from I-CAR last July. The shop is one of ten shops in Québec and one of 120 in Canada to have obtained I-CAR’s Gold Class for the period of 2016-2017. For Michel Desgroseilliers, owner of MD Mécaniques and partner of Solutions Mazda Châteauguay, the goal was simple: to offer highly qualified technicians to work on his customers’ vehicles. These technicians will be able to keep themselves up to date on account of their continual training. New developments are sure to follow suit. The shop is located at 21 Rue Patenaude, SaintIsidore- de-Laprairie, Qebec. For more information, visit their website:

MD Mecaniques completed its training and obtained its its Gold certification from I-CAR last July.

October 2017  collision Repair  79

Regional NEWS | Atlantic

CARSTAR Shediac launches in New Brunswick CARSTAR Canada recently announced the addition of CARSTAR Shediac to its network. With a 6,500 sq. ft. facility, nine employees, two paint booths and state-of-the-art equipment to service even large vehicles with aluminum components, CARSTAR Shediac is ready to support its neighbourhood and the Moncton area. Owner of CARSTAR Shediac, Serge Leger, grew up in the automotive industry, and has worked closely with his father in supporting collision repairs and customizing vehicles. Now, Leger is driven to grow the business, expand its regional reach and provide superior customer service and collision repairs. “My father is well-known in the area for

Dave Meery (Left) and Serge Leger (Right) in CARSTAR Shediac. The new 6,500 square foot facility serves the Moncton area.

his exceptional work and skill in the collision repair industry,” said Leger. “He’s set me up for success by teaching me everything I know, and I can’t wait to use that, along with

current technologies and innovations, to ensure everyone receives exceptional repairs and customer service.” Dave Meery, Regional Director of Atlantic Canada, is looking forward to seeing how Leger’s facility will contribute to CARSTAR. “The Legers have a legacy of service and quality in the Shediac area, and it’s so exciting that they want this legacy to live on through CARSTAR,” he said. “We can’t wait to see all of the great things that will come from Serge and his team, as we know they have a commitment to exceeding expectations and moving the collision repair industry forward.” For more information on CARSTAR Canada, visit

Fix Auto expands in Miramichi, New Brunswick Paul Randles, General Manager for Fix Auto’s Atlantic region announced a new location in New Brunswick: Fix Auto Miramichi. The announcement was made by Paul Randles, General Manager for Fix Auto’s Atlantic region. With close to four decades in the auto body business, 16 of which have been spent as a shop owner, Donnie Hogan has a true passion for the industry. “I take pride in my work to ensure that each customer is 100 percent satisfied,” said Hogan. “Our team understands that treating customers with compassion as well as providing quality collision repair work results in an overall great experience. It makes me feel good as a shop owner to see our customers drive away happy and safe on the roads.” Hogan joined Fix Auto to expand his busi-

ness and reach a larger consumer audience. He wanted to give his independently-owned shop greater access to insurance providers and their clients, which was a key advantage Hogan recognized in being part of the network. “Joining the Fix Auto family, with its strong national brand awareness, provides us with better leverage in our local market while the operational supports will enable us to provide even better customer service,” he said. Hogan says the advantages of partnering with Fix Auto were evident to him early in discussions. Such advantages include a comprehensive selection of office and management tools and streamline processes. As well, the location has recently undergone renovations to meet Fix Auto’s modern brand standards, which will enhance their customers’ overall experience. “Fix Auto shares the

Teresa Baisley and Donnie Hogan of Fix Auto Miramichi.

same commitment to high quality work and customer satisfaction as Donnie and his team,” said Randles. “His commitment will definitely benefit Fix Auto Miramichi’s sustainability going forward.” For more information, visit,

CSN expands in Nova Scotia with CSN Hughie’s CSN Collision Centres expanded its presence in Nova Scotia with the addition of CSN Hughie’s in Port Hastings. Hughie Samson was a dealership manager for many years before he decided to start his own business in 1989, now operating under the name CSN Hughie’s Collision Centre. “I was genuine in my intentions to help people with their vehicle repairs. I wasn’t sure if the business was going to be successful or not, but I took the risk,” said Sampson. “At the time, my only employee and I worked long days and nights to get the business off the ground.” Today, CSN Hughie’s is a fully renovated 5,000

sq. ft. facility with state-of-the-art equipment and technology. A statement from CSN Collision Centres says Samson and his team strive to provide world class services to their customers, and the entire team at CSN Hughie’s is extremely involved, making the collision centre a successful local business in the Strait Area. Some of the technicians have been working at CSN Hughie’s for almost 30 years. Sampson says each and every technician is up-to-date with training and knowledge. “Our team is like a family. We are all very excited to become a part of CSN,” said General Manager Justine Carter. “With CSN’s

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CSN Hughie’s in Port Hastings, Nova Scotia. The facility is owned and operated by Hughie Sampson.

help we can continue to be strive to be top in performance with the highest standards of customer service.” For more information, please visit


Boyd acquires Concours Collision Centres The Boyd Group has officially announced the acquisition of Concours Collision Centres. The multi-store operation, consisting of four collision repair facilities located in Calgary, was previously owned by Ken Friesen. “We are excited to be expanding our presence in the Calgary region, a large market with a population of approximately 1.5 million,” said Eric Danberg, President of the Boyd Autobody & Glass operations. “Our new locations will complement our five other centres in the Calgary area and provide us with 16 locations in Alberta to better serve our customers and insurance partners.” The Boyd Group, headquartered in Winnipeg, routinely releases announcements of acquisitions made in the US, but it’s a relative rarity for the company to acquire Canadian shops. In May of 2017, Collision Repair magazine reported on the blockbuster deal that saw Boyd Group acquire Ontario mega-chain Assured Automotive. Assured Automotive has 68 locations, giving Boyd Group a significant presence in a province where the company previously had only one facility. The Concours deal isn’t of the same scope, but the influence of the facilities, and their owner, on the Canadian collision repair landscape can’t be denied. The first Concours Collision location opened its doors in 1981. Since then the facilities have racked up an impressive list of achievements, leading to Friesen being widely recognized as an industry innovator. He was a founding father of the Canadian Collision Industry Forum (CCIF), as well as its first Chairman, and is considered an innovator in lean strategies. In fact,

Ken Friesen has sold the four locations of Concours Collision Centres to the Winnipeg-based Boyd Group. Friesen and his management team will stay on with the company after the acquisition is completed.

Concours Collision is typically recognized as the first Canadian shop to have implemented lean. The official announcement from Boyd Group notes that Friesen and his team will remain with the company. “Ken Friesen and his management team will be remaining as part of this expansion, and we look forward to our expanded Calgary footprint enabling us to better deliver the professional and friendly service that Boyd and Concours have been known for,” said Danberg. For more information, please visit —by Mike Davey

Uniban buys Star Auto Glass and Go! Glass & Accessories Uniban Canada has announced the acquisitions of Star Auto Glass and Go! Glass & Accessories. Star Auto Glass specializes in windshield repair and replacement. Go! Glass & Accessories is an Ontario-based glass repair chain with 20 locations. Uniban Canada is the franchisor for the brands VitroPlus, UniglassPlus, Go! Glass & Accessories and Ziebart in Canada. “This acquisition is a continuation of a strategic deployment for Uniban Canada. Star Auto Glass is an important player in the Greater Toronto Area. With an impressive number of mobile units and commercial business volume, the largest in Ontario, we will increase our presence in the region,” said Marc Desmarais, President and CEO of Uniban Canada. “This transaction was part of our strategic pursuit in enhancing our coverage of service centres to solidify our vertical integration strategy.” Through this transaction, Uniban Canada is expanding its network to more than 150 stores and 300 mobile units. “I am very enthusiastic about this transaction, which consolidates a longstanding relationship between our two companies. The equity of confidence and trust that has been built between us is a determining factor in my choice for the future direction of the Star Auto Glass banner. This transaction provides us with new tools to expand our presence and influence in the Greater Toronto Area and to support my project to open new locations,” said Bassam Betou, founder of Star Auto Glass. For more information, please visit 82  collision Repair


CARSTAR North America moves R&D operations to Canada CARSTAR North America has announced it will consolidate its R&D programs into one North American R&D Center, in an effort to pilot programs, repair processes and service offerings for the more than 500 locations across the continent. The newly designated CARSTAR North America facility will be located in Kanata, Ontario. According to a statement from CARSTAR, the facility offers state-of-the-art equipment for advanced vehicle repairs and will serve to test prototype equipment and repair processes, often in conjunction with equipment and product manufacturers. The R&D team will also pilot CARSTAR standard operating procedures at the facility to ensure consistent standards throughout the network. In addition, the CARSTAR R&D Center will serves as a training facility for CARSTAR franchisees from across North America. “As we have closer alignment in our US and Canadian operations, policies and procedures, it makes sense to consolidate our R&D process in one location and expand our platform for developing the services, repair standard and solutions we offer our customers and insurance partners,” said Michael Macaluso, President of CARSTAR North America. “We are already seeing strong benefits as we evaluate new products and programs for the remainder of 2017 and beyond.” As part of this initiative, the former CARSTAR Metcalf R&D facility location in Stilwell, Kansas, has become a franchise location. The store is owned and operated

by Steve Hahn, who previously served on the CARSTAR corporate field service team. “We are proud to have Steve Hahn, with his 20 years of expertise in the automotive repair industry and long experience as a member of the CARSTAR Operations team, become a franchisee in the CARSTAR network,” said Macaluso. “He brings a unique blend of industry experience and deep understanding of the CARSTAR model that will drive his success with this location.” For more information, please visit

Michael Macaluso, President of CARSTAR North America, has announced it will consolidate its R&D operations at a facility near Ottawa. ll.

Study: ADAS cuts collision rates New research from the US-based Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS) seems to show that blind spot detection and lane departure warning systems are cutting down on lane-change crashes. Results indicate that lane departure warning lowers rates of single-vehicle, sideswipe and head-on crashes of all severities by 11 percent and lowers the rates of injury crashes of the same types by 21 percent. The analysis controlled for driver age, gender, insurance risk level and other factors that could affect the rates of crashes per insured vehicle year. The new study included vehicles with optional lane departure warning from GM, Honda, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Subaru and Volvo. October 2017  collision Repair  83


Sam Piercey Foundation awards initial bursaries Skills Canada is pleased to announce that the Sam Piercey Foundation has agreed to award financial assistance to each of the four winners of the 2017 National Skills Competitions for automotive paint and body repairs. The winners of the first annual bursaries are Colin Bailey, Gabriel Richer-Guinard, Jaycobb Hooper and Matthew Norris. Each of the winners of the 2017 Skills Canada competition for automotive paint and body repair will receive a bursary of $800 on behalf of the Sam Piercey Foundation. “We would like to thank the Foundation for this generous contribution” says Shaun Thorson, CEO, Skills/Compétences Canada. “It’s with contributions like this that we continue to encourage and reinforce the passion young Canadians have for skilled trades careers.” Sam Piercey was the co-owner of Budds’ Collision in Oakville, Ontario, who passed away on July 24, 2016, as a result of complications arising due to leukemia. Piercey was well-known in the industry for his strong opinions and his willingness to voice them. He was also widely known for his willingness to mentor young technicians and shop owners, helping them to understand the collision repair industry. The Sam Piercey Foundation was established in his memory and as a part of his continuing legacy. The idea started with Sam Piercey Jr., one of Sam’s sons. He approached Terry Budd of the Budds’ Group of Companies, and the Sam Piercey Foundation was officially launched on December 16, 2017 at the Budds’ Collision Annual Christmas Pig Roast. The Foundation aims to provide annual scholarships and/or funding for students studying or competing in collision and paint repair across Canada on an annual basis. Terry Budd, one of the principals at the Budds’ Group, says, “Sam would be extremely proud of this endowment and the legacy it will leave. He was a one-of-a-kind champion for the collision repair industry.” The Sam Piercey Foundation has partnered with Skills Canada to recognize students who are competing nationally in body repair and paint competitions. Winning students will be provided with the bursary to be utilized for tuition and other recognized post-secondary courses in the collision and paint industry. Budds’ has committed to funding the first five years of recipients’ awards as the Foundation continues to grow. The Foundation is seeking similar matching annual contributions and commitments

along with raising funds at the Budds’ Collision Annual Christmas Pig Roast and other scheduled events throughout the year. To the extent the Foundation continues to accumulate a capital base, further annual contributions will be awarded. Consolidated Dealers and the CCS Network are early supporters of the Sam Piercey Foundation. Mike Beier of Consolidated Dealers says, “When the opportunity presented itself, we jumped at the chance to contribute on behalf of the CCS Network and Consolidated Dealers. Sam was a friend, mentor and influence in the lives of many in our industry and we are proud to support his continued legacy through the Foundation.”

Sam Piercey Jr. explains, “We’re starting with Skills Canada at the national level but we would like to award winners at the regional level in the future depending on the funding the foundation receives.” Sam Piercey Jr. and his business partners with Canadian Hail Repair have committed to managing all of the operating expenses and activities of the Foundation for the time being. Bing Wong of Canadian Hail Repair will be directing the activities of the foundation and can be reached by email at bwong@ Donations and commitments can be made online by visiting and clicking DONATE NOW. This will take you directly to Canada Helps, a secure payment platform for online donations. In the Fund drop-down menu, choose Sam Piercey Foundation (a fund established by Budds’ Group of Companies). Follow the prompts to finish the donation. An acknowledgement and tax receipt will be emailed to the donor immediately after making the donation. An acknowledgement and tax receipt will be emailed to the donor immediately after making the donation. Alternatively, donations may be directed to Sam Piercey Foundation, c/o Budds’ Group, 2454 South Service Rd West, Oakville, Ontario, L6L 5M9. October 2017  collision Repair  85


CARSTAR honours outstanding franchisees at first North American conference More than 1,000 CARSTAR franchisees and industry partners watched as CARSTAR North America handed out its Canadian and US awards together at its 1NE CARSTAR conference in Charlotte, North Carolina. Numerous Canadian stores were honoured, including three locations named as Franchisee of the Year, Rookie of the Year and the winners of the Next Generation Award. The awards were presented by Michael Macaluso, President of CARSTAR North America, and Dean Fisher, Chief Operations Officer, CARSTAR Auto Body Repair Experts.

Franchisee of the Year

Jeff Labanovich of CARSTAR Oshawa Drake Street in Oshawa, Ontario, has been selected as CARSTAR North America’s Franchisee of the Year. The recipient of this award is chosen based on high performance, commitment to CARSTAR’s EDGE Performance program, promotion of the CARSTAR brand, and timeliness in handing in reports. According to CARSTAR, Lanabovich is engaged in his local community and in the brand community as the Chair of the CARSTAR Canada advisory board. He has an excellent brand presence in the marketplace, and has delivered double-digit growth over the past several years.

Rookie of the Year

This award is given to a first-year CARSTAR franchisee who has just gotten “up and running” with the company. To be eligible, the franchisee must have completed immersion training and embraced CARSTAR culture. This year’s award goes to Ron and Mandy Alberts of CARSTAR St. Stephen in New Brunswick. According to CARSTAR, the Alberts have a “best-in-class” location, and they are recognized as involved community members, progressive thinkers and true ambassadors of the CARSTAR brand.

The Next Generation Award

Joe and Paul Saputo, owners of CARSTAR Ancaster, have received the Next Generation Award for 2017. Joe and Paul inherited the business from their parents, who were among the first CARSTAR franchisees in Canada. Since then they have opened a CARSTAR Express location and grown sales by 25 percent. The Next Generation Award honours a second or third generation CARSTAR owner who excels at leading the family business

and participates in certain CARSTAR programs such as the EDGE Performance platform. CARSTAR also honoured owners and business groups for top achievement in particular areas, such as customer experience or top cycle time. Canadians are prominent among the list of award winners, taking home awards for community outreach and initiatives, outstanding quality and more. “It is an incredible honour to be able to recognize the achievements of these great shops, owners, and executives,” said Michael Macaluso, President of CARSTAR North America. “Our North American award recipients not only set a great example for other shops to follow, they also spread their knowledge and experience throughout the entire CARSTAR network to help each and every one of our shops grow and succeed.” The full list of Canadians recognized at the Charlotte conference includes:

Jeff Labanovich (centre) receives the award for CARSTAR Franchisee of the Year at the 1NE CARSTAR Conference. The award was presented by Dean Fisher, Chief Operations Officer (left) and Michael Macaluso, President of CARSTAR.

Ron and Mandy Alberts of CARSTAR St. Stephen in New Brunswick have received the Rookie of the Year Award, given to a first-year franchisee. According to CARSTAR, the Alberts are true ambassadors of the brand.

Cystic Fibrosis Ambassador Awards • CARSTAR Red Deer – Red Deer, Alberta • CARSTAR St. Clair – York, Ontario • CARSTAR Brampton – Brampton, Ontario • CARSTAR St. Catharines - St. Catharines, Ontario • CARSTAR Edmonton West – Edmonton, Alberta • CARSTAR Brantford – Brantford, Ontar • CARSTAR Kieswetter – Kitchener, Ontario • CARSTAR Lachute – Lachute, Quebec • CARSTAR Harriston – Harriston, Ontario • CARSTAR Saskatchewan – Winnipeg, Manitoba • CARSTAR Mississauga 401 – Mississauga, Ontario 2017 President’s Club • CARSTAR Miramichi – Atlantic Canada • CARSTAR Duncan – Western Canada • CARSTAR Ancaster – Ontario • CARSTAR Brossard – Quebec • Darryl & Brian Hemstreet, CARSTAR Red Deer & Red Deer South – under $8 Million • LC Group – over $8 Million

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Marketer of the Year • CARSTAR P.E.I. EDGE Award for Outstanding Quality • CARSTAR Brossard – Brossard, Quebec 2017 Top Cycle Time/LOR • CARSTAR Hamilton Rymal – Hamilton, Ontario Customer Experience/CSI • CARSTAR Cambridge – Cambridge, Ontario Community Champion Award • France Choiniere, CARSTAR Arsenault Granby – Granby, Quebec Ironman Award • Mark Giles, CARSTAR Fergus – Fergus, Ontario For more information, please visit


Mario’s Towing pulls out vehicle submerged in lake Tow truck drivers in BC’s Okanagan Valley had to go for a bit of a swim recently to make a recovery, after the driver of a vehicle and trailer carrying a boat ended up in Okanagan Lake, outside a pub. The vehicle and trailer were submerged for at least half an hour, possibly longer, before Mario’s Towing arrived on the scene. The driver of the vehicle managed to escape unharmed, if somewhat damp. The boat, of course, remained afloat. We’d point out that one out of three isn’t bad, but it’s only 33 percent. Not exactly a passing grade. “One came with the winch which pulled them out and then there was a flatbed that took them away. Someone had to swim under the water to hook the winch up and once they got it hooked up they just pulled him out,” said Shawn Daley, a cook at Rose’s Waterfront Pub. Daley was watching from the pub patio and said there were about 100 other people who witnessed the event go down. RCMP officers were also on the scene. “I think he just forgot to put it in drive and hit the gas and away he went,” said Daley. Daley said he’s never seen anything quite like this before outside the pub. Somehow we’re not surprised that this is a rare occurence. However, he has witnessed some other incidents of poor judgment. “The last funny thing I saw was when someone drove off the steps here in their car. There’s three concrete steps out front here, and they drove up on the boardwalk and I guess they decided to drive off the steps. It took their undercarriage right out,” he said. —By Erin McLaughlin Have a story about a strange or unusual tow? Share it with us at!

Members of Mario Towing’s team had to take a quick dip in Okanagan Lake to hook the winch up to a submerged vehicle. They’re probably just glad this took place in late summer, rather than the middle of January!

The submerged vehicle in question. At least it wasn’t too deep!

Death of RCMP officer renews calls for change to the slow down, move over law Constable Francis Deschenes of Amherst RCMP was killed September 12, after having pulled over to help change a flat tire on the TransCanada Highway near Memracook, New Brunswick. Investigations on the collision show that a utility van collided with Deschenes’ police car and the SUV. Deschenes died at the scene. Two individuals in the SUV were taken to the hospital and later released. His death has since sparked conversation about renewing calls for changes to the slow down and move over laws in the Maritimes. “It’s tragic,” said Doug Short, Owner of Five Star Towing in Moncton. He commented that he worries every day that the same thing will happen to one of his drivers. Short has even taken steps himself to try and improve awareness of the law, placing decals on the back of his trucks that say, “It’s the law to move over.” New Brunswick and Nova Scotia both have slow down and move over laws, which require drivers to slow down and move into the far

lane when approaching emergency vehicles on the side of the highway. The law neglects tow trucks and service vehicles, however, which makes working much more unsafe for these drivers, who often find themselves on busy roadsides. The Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) has been pushing both New Brunswick and Nova Scotia to include tow trucks in the slow down, move over law. Evan Scott of Kennebecasis Valley Regional Police said that he hopes a silver lining can be found from the incident, as it should act as an eye-opener for motorists who drive too quickly.

Constable Francis Deschenes was killed September 12, after having pulled over to help change a flat tire.

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Recycling News....................91 - 99

World gathers for the annual International Roundtable

Steve Fletcher of the Automotive Recyclers of Canada.

Participants were initially given the chance to meet and mingle during a guided bus tour of two Canadian auto recycling facilities around the area, Thorold’s Auto Recycling and Miller’s Auto Recycling.

The International Roundtable of Automotive Recyclers wrapped successfully in Niagara Falls. The event gathered an international crowd as leaders of the automotive recycling industry travelled from far and wide to discuss the state of the industry. Participants were initially given the chance to meet and mingle during a guided bus tour of two Canadian auto recycling facilities around the area, Thorold’s Auto Recycling and Miller’s Auto Recycling. One highlight from the event were the country reports, where each country’s representative gave a brief presentation on the state of the auto recycling industry in their homeland. This year’s meeting gathered speakers from Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, Australia, India and the United States. The event also featured

presentations on new activities and products. Presentations were moderated by industry veteran Ed MacDonald (ARC/ ARA), who presented each country representative with a bottle of pure Canadian maple syrup as a sign of gratitude! The event featured many speakers from various countries, companies and organizations. From the Japan Automotive Recyclers Association, Minoru Goku discussed the state of auto-recycling in Japan. From the Automotive Recyclers Association, Michael Wilson discussed the state of the industry in the United States. David Nolan, from the Australian Automotive Recyclers Association, touched on the state of the industry in Australia. From PartCycle, Andy Alonso discussed the company’s plans to make recycled auto parts accessible on the online market.

Ed MacDonald of the ARC and ARA.

Michael Wilson of the ARA.

Andy Latham of Salvage Wire. October 2017 collision Repair  91


George Shea of Direct Auto Parts, Gloria Mann of Canadian Auto Recyclers magazine and Jennifer Court of Scout Environmental.

David Nolan of the AARA.

Minoru Goky of the JARA.

Thursday banquet entertainment featured authentic Native American dancing and storytelling provided by the White Pine Dancers.

Captain Mohan Ram of the SIAM.

Andy Alonso of PartCycle Technologies.

Steve Fletcher of the Automotive Recyclers of Canada was next on stage to present an update on the state of auto recycling in Canada. Also discussing the state of the industry within Canada was Jennifer Court, from Scout Environmental. Court gave a presentation on the Tundra Take Back initiative, which aims to help the auto recycling industry in the northern and remote communities of Canada. Captain Mohan Ram, from the Society of Indian Automotive Manufacturers spoke on the status of the industry in India. Andy Latham from Salvage Wire, discussed the state of the industry in the United Kingdom. The day came to an end with an elegant banquet during which guests were presented with entertainment from the White Pine

Dance Group, which dazzled the audience with authentic Native American dances. Finally the roundtable came to a close with a general working session on Friday, where speakers and participants were given a chance to thoroughly discuss the global state of the auto-recycling industry. Based on Thursday’s presentations, stakeholders discussed, challenged and launched ideas in hopes of furthering the growth of the industry. The auto recycling industry seems to share similar issues across different countries, but one thing is certain: professional auto recyclers are ready to come together in order to resolve issues and challenges. For more on the International Roundtable or on any aspect of auto recycling, please visit

Recyclers gathered during the IRT Working Sessions.

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PartCycle Technologies launches PartCycle Technologies has launched its enhanced e-Commerce platform,, allowing automotive dealerships ease of access to quality parts they need for their service vehicles and provide their customers with economical part options in service quotes. “We see customers who need to fix their car, but simply cannot afford the new part cost,” says Owen Kilmury, Fixed Operations Director for the University Auto Family. “Some customers have had to forego the recommended repair service because of part cost. PartCycle allows a dealership to retain a customer that we otherwise would have lost due to the price of certain new parts. The customer gets a quality part, at a fraction of the price, and the dealership retains a customer that otherwise would have been lost,” he adds. With inventory from 55+ professional automotive recycler locations across North America, and more than 4 million parts in stock, PartCycle challenges auto dealerships and service locations to say “yes” to more service customers simply by integrating into their service operations.

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PartCycle Technologies has launched its enhanced e-Commerce platform,

“We get all the options we need in a single PartCycle search,” says Parts Manager Chris Britt, from University Toyota. “I’ve spent the better part of a day just waiting on call backs for parts, but with PartCycle I find what I need quickly and easily, then can include those options in customer quotes. Then they can get what they need for their vehicle,” he adds. For more information, please visit


In Memoriam: Jack Isaac Cohen of Jasper Auto Parts Alberta has lost an industry icon with the passing of Jack Cohen, better known as “Jasper Jack.” He passed away on September 4, 2017 surrounded by his family, which included his wife of 52 years, Marilyn, and his children; Max, Cherie and Dave. Born in Belgium during the second World War, their caring father, fearing for the boys, took them to a country orphanage in an attempt to keep them safe. The boys never saw their father, mother or teenaged sister after that day. All were later found to have perished in the death camps. Jack and his twin brother were also eventually put on a train, suspected of heading to one of these camps. Incredibly, the Queen of Belgium stopped the train, and the boys were able to slip away from danger along with about 150 other very fortunate children. They were brought to Canada a while later and were adopted by Harry and Lillian Cohen. In 1946, Harry started Jasper Auto Parts in downtown Edmonton just a block north of Jasper Ave. This was the humble beginning that would lead to much greater things for the Cohens in later years. When Harry died, Jack took over the business. In 1992 that property was sold to the Alberta government as part of their transportation corridor. Jack married Marilyn, the love of his life, and their three children followed and eventually they were thrilled to welcome six grandchildren to the family. Max currently lives in Phoenix, where Jack and Marilyn had spent happy times over many of the more recent winters. Dave runs Western Auto and Truck Parts in Calgary and Cherie has been taking care of Jasper Auto Parts. I once asked Jack what was “that one

big thing” he’d learned in his 72 years in the business. I expected him to tell me about a recycling process or executing a long-term vision, or maybe some well guarded secret to do with buying low and selling high. To my surprise his answer was “it’s not about the cars. It’s about the people.” He told me that his biggest

By Ian Hope pride was being able to deal with people of all ethnic backgrounds; he truly was passionate about being able to connect and communicate with anyone. Jack’s obituary in the Edmonton Journal got it right. “There was and will only ever be one Jack Cohen, as unique and special as they come.”

Jack Cohen (right) with Colin McKean, Executive Director of the BC Environmental Association.

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October 2017 collision Repair  95


Ontario students transform Artscape Youngplace using recycled rubber tires Inventive minds collaborated to re-design the community space revealed recently at a popular community cultural hub in Toronto, Artscape Youngplace. Sparked by the Ontario Tire Stewardship’s (OTS) third Design Challenge, University of Toronto Landscape Design and Sheridan College Industrial Design students used the equivalent of 854 recycled tires to create the environmentally sustainable space and OTS’s most ambitious design project to date. “The goal of the Design Challenge is to ignite innovation by creating an environmentally sustainable design for an urban space, while showcasing the aesthetics, functionality and high-performance of Ontario tire-derived products,” said Andrew Horsman, Executive Director, Ontario Tire Stewardship. “With the help of inspired designers, like these students, and our recycling network, we can continue to rethink tires to drive the circular economy, creating new jobs in Ontario, and ultimately diverting millions of tires from landfills.” This was the first Design Challenge to incorporate an industrial design component, resulting in the creation of an innovative bench, by Sheridan College students, representing an entirely new use for recycled tires. Dubbed the “Shaw Bench” the creative product design includes an integrated bench and bike-rack. Its modular

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Councillor Mike Layton and Ontario Tire Stewardship Executive Director, Andrew Horsman test The Shaw Bench.

design makes the bench highly adaptable, allowing for a variety of configurations. “We’re grateful to Ontario Tire Stewardship for helping to transform our outdoor space through this innovative environmental program. All of the partners and the students who contributed their ideas and energy excelled to provide this community with an outstanding new place in which to engage, collaborate and be inspired by creative projects,” said Tim Jones, Artscape CEO. Please visit for more information about the Design Challenge.


Tire Take Back 2017 raises over $54,000 for Sunshine Foundation A celebration was recently held in culmination of the annual Tire Take Back program, a collaborative community fundraiser organized by the Ontario Automotive Recyclers Association (OARA) and the Ontario Tire Stewardship (OTS) with support from registered tire haulers and processors, and in association with the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA), working together with communities across the province to raise money to support The Sunshine Foundation of Canada. Since 2009, Tire Take Back has successfully led to the collection and recycling of 510,285 used tires, resulting in a total of $1,115,921 in donations to Sunshine, and effectively providing hundreds of life-changing dream come true experiences for children living with severe physical disabilities or lifethreatening illnesses. During the eighth annual Tire Take Back program held this year from May 23 to June 4, Ontarians recycled a total of 52,100 used tires, raising $54,528 in support of Sunshine. To celebrate this tremendous success, members from OARA, OTS, OFA and Sunshine gathered at P&G Auto Parts in North Bay, the recycler with the highest number of tires collected across the province, for an official cheque presentation and celebration of more dreams coming true. “OARA Members have rallied around the Tire Take Back program like no other effort within the association,” said Steve Fletcher, Executive Director of OARA. “They put in phenomenal work collecting these tires, keeping the environment clean, and helping a great charity along the way. We are so pleased that the North Bay community chipped in to support this great program.” “Ontario Tire Stewardship is honoured to be part of a worthwhile initiative that benefits our environment, economy and local communities,” said Andrew Horsman, Executive Director, Ontario Tire Stewardship. “Through the hard work of so many of OTS’s Program

Partners, we’re pleased to play a role in making dreams come true for some very deserving children and their families. Ontarians should be proud of the commitment they’ve shown to responsible tire recycling. It’s through initiatives like Tire Take Back that have helped contribute to recycling more than 100 million tires in the province.” This year marked a significant increase in support from the farming community, with the highest number of agricultural tires donated during this campaign to date. This increase is due in part to the collaboration with OFA and their efforts to reach out to the agricultural sector across the province. “OFA would like to congratulate OARA and OTS on another successful Tire Take Back campaign,” said Keith Currie, President of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture. “Our members appreciate that their efforts to continually be environmentally responsible can now be supportive of this outstanding fundraising initiative for The Sunshine Foundation of Canada.” The celebration at P&G Auto Parts, hosted by co-owner Darrell Pitman, was also an opportunity for Sunshine to give thanks for the combined efforts of all the stakeholders who came together to make a difference in the lives of children. “For the past eight years, the support of Tire Take Back organizers and participants has helped make dreams a reality for children and youth living with severe physical disabilities or life-threatening illnesses,” says Nancy Sutherland, Chief Executive Officer of The Sunshine Foundation of Canada. “These life-changing experiences help kids begin to write their future stories with a newfound sense of confidence and independence. The generous support of OARA, OTS, OFA, and all their partners and members has brought together hundreds of dream makers across Ontario, encouraging more kids to dream big for years to come, and for that we are truly thankful.”

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The Sunshine Foundation of Canada receives a donation of $54,528 at the Tire Take Back event, held at P&G Auto Parts. From left to right: Sarah Lashbrook, Heidi Spannbauer, Darrell Pitman, Steve Fletcher and Chris Pitman.

Ontarians recycled a total of 52, 100 used tires this year, raising $54, 528 in support of The Sunshine Foundation of Canada.


ARPAC calls on stakeholders to report fraudulent ads The automotive recyclers association of Quebec (ARPAC) recently held a meeting with the Quebec Office of Consumer Protection to address the issue of illegal recyclers within the province. According to the association, illegal recyclers have been advertising false services for some time and continue their activities with impunity in the province of Quebec. ARPAC appreciates any kind of collaboration in dealing with this matter and invites anyone to email them at info@arpac. org or by fax at 450-504-8313, about any illegal recyclers advertised in their local weekly newspaper in the “Scrap” section of the classified ads. If sending an ad which is thought to be fraudulent, please make sure

The automotive recyclers association of Quebec (ARPAC) recently held a meeting with the Quebec Office of Consumer Protection to address the issue of illegal recyclers within the province.

to send a legible copy. This will aid ARPAC in finding the name of the newspaper and the date of the publication. ARPAC will post these announcements to the Office of Consumer

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Protection to assist them in their work to enforce the Merchants and Recyclers Act. ARPAC would like to hand all automotive recyclers and other interested industry stakeholders for their help with this matter.

October 2017 collision Repair  99


Insideperspective Showing the public how we do what we do By David Gold


uto recyclers regularly give tours of their operations for a variety of reasons. Sometimes we are asked to partake in community programs. Sometimes we are asked to teach a little bit about recycling and re-use or about our products. Very often, people outside the industry marvel at the level of complexity involved in an auto recycling facility. So they ask, how do we do it? Like many industries, auto recycling facilities are made up of many little operations within the business unit itself. Appearances are often deceiving in terms of the number of team members actually

our customers). The better we control expenses, the more aggressive we can be when purchasing salvage that is in demand within the marketplaces we serve. Since our business is naturally labour intensive, we use buying tools specifically designed to advise us as to what might be the more popular (and therefore, more profitable) vehicles to purchase for our specific customer base. This allows us to be most effective and properly attribute value to those vehicles that will yield the biggest bang for our buck. There is no question about it. The better auto recyclers can manage their respective businesses

people outside the industry marvel at the level of complexity involved in an auto recycling facility. required in order to get the job done. Sometimes auto recyclers have closed door sessions where we ask the same questions to one another. That is when we start to break down the business into segments in which we can compare metrics so that we can then better understand how we do what we do. It takes many departments, and those from outside the industry are always amazed that we have buying, inventory, dismantling, parts stocking/parts pullers, shippers, drivers, accounting, salespeople and others that make the business tick. Who knew it would take such a collective bunch? As a rule, auto recyclers use their own ingenuity to find solutions to industry specific problems that are inherent for the proper handling and processing of automobiles. In fact the few software programs we use come from present or former auto recyclers who designed them because of their own needs. Auto recyclers couldn’t run the business at the levels seen today without the use of these proprietary systems, ranging from a point of sale inventory management system to a bolt on piece of shipping software made directly for us to use and benefit from. Labour is of course our number one expense (not including the salvage we purchase to serve

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with the use of these tools, the better we can serve the collision repairers. Auto recyclers support the collision repair industry so they can continue to develop and enhance complementary products to supplement our natural innovative instincts. At the end of the day, it’s all about providing our people with a line of sight to the products that we have available while making sure those products are available to your industry. We strive to display our products to the marketplace using multiple portals and we work together to help fulfill orders as required. So, how do we do it? The real answer is that we are a group that utilizes the necessary devices in order to maintain an organized and profitable business operation. We are a group that benefits not only our customers, but also the environment in which we live. David Gold of Standard Auto Wreckers is a founding member of Fenix Parts and holds the title of President for Canadian Operations. Locations in Canada include Toronto, Port Hope and Ottawa. He can be reached at 416-286-8686.

the last word

Advertiser Index Company


3M....................................................4 AADCO Auto Parts........................92 AkzoNobel.......................................7 ARSLAN ........................................ 17 Assured Automotive......................39 Auto Quip Canada...........................8 Automotive Recyclers of Canada...95 Axalta......................................... OBC BASF................................................9 Betag Innovation............................ 81 Canadian Hail Repair..................... 21 Car-O-Liner....................................56 Carcone’s Auto Recycling.............99 Cardinal Couriers...........................79 CARSTAR Canada.........................32 Celette............................................ 51 Collision 360............................ 12, 13 Collision Recyclers........................ 11 Collision Solutions Network..........35 Color Compass.............................. 47 D&E Distributors............................ 10 Dominion Sure Seal.......................43 Equalizer........................................69 Eurovac..........................................82 FBS Distribution............................. 61 Finixa..............................................40 FIX Auto Canada............................36 Formula Honda..............................52 Garmat...........................................83 Global Finishing Solutions.............55 Impact Auto Auctions.................... 97 Island Clean Air..............................66 Kia Canada.................................... 15 Martech..........................................85 Mitchell........................................... 31 Monidex......................................... 87 Ontario College of Trades.............96 PFAFF Automotive.........................23 Polyvance...................................... 74 PPG...............................................2,3 Pro Spot International................... 24 RBL Products................................62 Rondex........................................... 19 Royal Auto Collision...................... 73 Saint-Gobain Abrasives................84 SATA Canada.................................44 Scout Environmental.....................90 Sherwin-Williams........................... 72 Spraymax.......................................59 Stark Auto Sales............................88 Steck Manufacturing.....................77 Symach..........................................68 Thorold Auto Parts........................94 Tiger Auto Parts.............................. 76 Toyota.................................48, 70, 71 UAP.................................................50 Valspar Refinish............................IBC Wedge Clamp................................. 16 Wurth Canada................................65

talkitout Communication is both challenge and opportunity By Mike Davey


he future finally showed up. We still don’t have our flying cars, but the technology we do have is simply astounding. The lack of flying cars is probably for the best. I still see a lot of people texting and driving. I somehow doubt they’d become any more careful if they were in the sky. The technological revolution we’ve seen in recent years isn’t just about vehicles. It isn’t just about communications. It’s really about both, and how they’re interacting today and into the future. Communications technology allows us to talk to almost anyone in the world at a moment’s notice. The benefits are obvious, but it carries challenges as well. Since you can communicate more frequently, customers expect you to do so. They can also quite easily find out what other people think of your shop. Very soon we’ll probably start to see car companies rolling out apps that allow motorists to check in with their vehicle directly and check its status. What happens if their car leaves your shop and the customer can tell immediately, via the app, that error codes are still showing? If they’re collision-related, then they should have been cleared, but not all codes are going to be directly or even indirectly related to the incident that brought them to your door. No doubt you can explain that these have nothing to do with the collision, but this explanation will sit better with your customer if it takes place during the repair process, rather than after they pick up the car. Leaving aside the influx of UHSS, aluminum and now carbon fibre that we’ve seen in recent years, many of the primary technological advances in vehicles have been related to communications. Not communications with the OEM or the driver, although that capability has increased as well, but communication between the cars systems and the other vehicles on the road.

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We haven’t seen much in the way of vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication yet, but more is certainly coming. It’s a rare week that I don’t get one missive or another from a tech company saying they’re developing some sort of V2V technology. The day when virtually all of the cars on the road are talking to one another is clearly just over the horizon. However, it’s in how the car communicates with itself where we’ve seen the most sweeping advances. The systems in today’s automobiles are in constant communication with each other. They have to be, otherwise the fancy advanced driver assistance systems they’re loading cars with these days simply won’t work. The central processor needs to hear from the lane departure warning system’s sensors to alert the driver, as one obvious example. You can probably think of at least 20 more without breaking a sweat. It may sound like advances in communications have brought us problems, but they really are challenges instead. Problems are items that are best avoided completely. Challenges have to be met head-on. You can still avoid them, but only at your peril. In brief, technology has increased our capabilities, which all this implies. It means we not only can do more, but that we must do more. If we don’t, others will, and they will reap the rewards. Continuous advancement has to be our philosophy, no matter how well we may think we’re doing right now. We can’t stop time here and we certainly can’t turn back the clock to a simpler time. Either we continue to get better or we fall behind. It really is just that simple. Mike Davey is the editor of Collision Repair magazine. He can be reached at 905-5490454 or via email at editor@