Welsh Enterprise Awards 2023

SME News Welsh Enterprise Awards 2023/ 20 Best Local Automotive Parts Store 2023 - Gwent Auto Spares Wales is a small-to-medium sized motor factor that was set up during the Covid-19 pandemic, offering customers brand new replacement car parts and vehicle accessories, supplying these to the industry and general public. The company was set up due to other factors in the area being bought by multi-national companies and losing their personal touch, which is exactly what Auto Spares Wales strives for in forging the strongest possible relationships with its customer-base. Between the three people initially involved in the establishing of the business, more than 50 years of trade experience was shared between them, with 40+ of these being in customer-facing roles. We speak with Stephen Jones, who tells us about the business’ successes in providing a personal approach and top-quality products. When Auto Spares Wales commenced operations a few short years ago, its initial goal was merely to provide the network of people that the team were already familiar with a combination of quality parts and unparalleled service. As a result of this unwavering commitment to excellence, word of mouth caused the business to face exponential growth, and after only four months of operating, the team were looking to open a second site to keep up with demand. This was made possible thanks to a new business partner/shareholder who was introduced to the company to further stimulate growth. Through Auto Spares Wales’ dedication to providing quality parts and services, the ways it distinguishes itself from its multi-national competitors is simple and clear to see. Partnerships are built that are personal and mutually beneficial, accurate parts are sourced and delivered quickly where possible, and parts strike the balance between high calibre and reasonably priced. The firm is the first to admit that it is not always the cheapest, but there is no substitute for quality, and customers can be proud in the fact they are supporting a truly local business. All of this is complemented by the employment of some of the most helpful and knowledgeable staff in the industry, who are happy and willing to assist. As a result of the current economic crisis, people are holding on to their vehicles a lot longer than they previously would, choosing repairs over replacements. Of course, this is good for the industry, and is likely the reason for a slow take-up of electric vehicle purchases in South Wales. With reference to South Wales, the company’s location is paramount to its success, with all employees and the majority of customers living within a few miles of the branches, everybody knows each other, and the dynamic is akin to that of a big family. A small and upcoming business, the team at Auto Spares Wales has found recruitment to be an incredibly challenging part of its venture into the sector, with wages having increased drastically in the two-and-a-half years that the business has been operating. Aside from this, the company has gone from having seven members at the beginning to 24 presently, and all staff are offered a company performance bonus on top of their basic salaries. The viewpoint taken by the business is that when it does well, so too will its staff. Initially, the factor focused on outside recruitment, but has now shifted gears to promoting from within. Auto Spares Wales is a business that is always looking ahead to the future, and by the end of 2023, the company will have completed the move of its head office to a larger building that will boast an extra 1500 sq. ft, with a combined 5400 sq. ft of warehouse space, and a larger office. Serving to further strengthen its aims, this move will help the business achieve its ultimate goal of providing superb customer service as more products will be on-hand, saving on time and delivery costs. Finally, Auto Spares Wales would like to take this opportunity to thank the members of a buying group which it is apart of, The PDP. The business joined this group right at the beginning of its journey and is grateful for being invited to be a member so early in its lifecycle. As Stephen details, being a part of this group has offered the company the opportunity to compete with larger motor factories in the area and has resulted in demonstrable success across the board. Contact: Steve Jones Company: Auto Spares Wales Web Address: www.autospareswales.com/