Spartan Motor Factors (Cardiff)

Origins

The main motivations in starting the business were based on the assumption that garage customers were not receiving a high standard of customer service. Existing motor factors were frequently providing a slow service and poor quality parts. Spartan’s philosophy was that by embracing technology and training staff appropriately, service levels in the industry could be raised thus improving the reputation of independent garages.There are major barriers to entry in the industry such as the superior buying power of national competitors, the reluctance of suppliers to offer credit terms to new businesses, the large stock holding (ideally over 200k) needed to compete, and the investment needed in IT infrastructure. Despite all these the factors the biggest challenge has been persuading some garages that Spartan can provide a suitable level of service and offering the reassurances needed to just get them to try.

Success Factor

These include investment in staff, technology and processes to ensure accuracy and minimise errors; fostering a personal relationship with customers ensures that any issues or problems are openly discussed and resolved quickly; and access to excellent support in terms of advice, finance and infrastructure.

The Future

With ten successful branches, Spartan feels that it now has a solid blueprint for opening new depots and the aim for the next five years will be to expand further into England and open as many new branches as possible.