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RR 238: Greg Bunch from Aspen Auto Clinic
7th July 2017 • Remarkable Results Radio Podcast • Carm Capriotto, AAP
00:00:00 00:54:32

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Greg Bunch is the owner of Aspen Auto Clinic, a five-location automotive and service business in Colorado. Greg started his passion for cars at 15 when he began rebuilding a 1966 Volkswagen Bug.  Greg has moved from a Volkswagen mechanic to ASE Master Technician, to Management, to starting his shop 18 years ago in his garage, to an award-winning multi-location business.

Greg is currently a board member for the STEM-based charter school call “Automotive Institute of Science & Technology” and on the Advisory board of Ratchet and Wrench Magazine. Greg is also a board member of the Autocare organization and a certified instructor for the  Worldpac Training Institute and Carquest Technical Institute.  Greg’s unwavering passion for the industry has also led him to form a company called Transformers Institute, a coaching and training company dedicated to transforming the automotive industry. Listen to Greg’s previous episodes HERE.

Talking Points:

  • He expanded to his second shop based on an interview he had with a technician who wanted to come to work for him.
    • Took only one week to close the transaction.
    • It was a tough year. Trial by fire. He didn’t know what he didn’t know.
    • The business models did not match. The business he bought was built on price. Greg’s business was not.
    • All technicians ultimately were replaced.
    • Took SBA loan.
  • Traits of a shop owner who would like to expand:
    • Afraid of the risk.
    • Waiting to get ducks in a row.
    • Comfortable with what they have.
    • Don’t know how to get it done.
  • When do you know when to expand?

Sound business practices help you scale to multiple locations.

  • You must have documented systems and practices.
  • A training system.
  • Having the staff that knows what they are doing.
    • You must over-staff.
    • Integrated in your policies and procedures.
    • It will cost some money in payroll.
    • They must be exposed in your culture before you open.
  • Don’t open two in the same year.
  • If in a completely new market your cost of marketing is high because you cannot use the residual value of your current shop.
  • Do the demographics and research income levels.
    • He is looking for $70 – $80 K income level to afford his services.
  • Good technicians do not want to work weekend hours.
    • He recently changed his techs hours so they will only work Monday – Friday.
      • Saturday the service advisers work until noon.
  • Service advisers are getting more hours of training per year than technicians.
    • Greg has a full-time trainer on board to train and develop Aspen’s sales system.
  • You need capital to grow.
    • Owners need to take out what they need to live on so they can re-invest in their business.
    • Options for growth exist today.
  • Customer Retention.
    • Their training system works on converting customers into really good customers.
    • Doing targeted direct mail to specific vehicle ownership.
  • Transformer Mastermind Group.
    • Our mission is to change how auto service is seen by the public and to attract smart and talented people into the industry.
    • The group brings together higher-level operators.
    • They do not do shop visits.
    • They meet 4 times a year.
  • Favorite quotes: Behavior never lies and Inspect what you expect.

Aspen Auto Clinic Website

Transformers Mastermind Website


Aspen Auto Clinic Profile

Years in industry: 26
Years in business ownership: 16
Number of technicians: 25
Number of service advisers: 11
Specialization: All makes, but very well tooled and trained on Euro's
Total locations: 5
Number of Bays and Lifts: 62
Days Open: Monday – Saturday, Technicians only work Monday – Friday
Annual estimated volume: $9MM
What's Unique: We cater to higher end clients, a very client centered business
Repair vs. Maintenance: 50% / 50%
Special Accreditation's: ASE Master L1
Biggest Industry Challenge: Technician Shortage
Hybrid Repairs: Yes
Philanthropy: Life Network as seen on ABC
Supplier Marketing Program: Tech Net – Bosch

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