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VOL. 39 | NO. 12 | Friday, March 20, 2015

Eurofix, Autofix expand with purchase of Midas locations

By Joe Morris

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EuroFix and AutoFix locations

Franklin

EuroFix Franklin
140 Royal Oaks Blvd.  615-591-2475

AutoFix Franklin
140 Royal Oaks Blvd.  615-656-7886

Nashville

EuroFix Nashville
4266 Kenilwood Dr  615-724-4131

EuroFix Belle Meade
4403 Harding Pike  615-385-9565

AutoFix Nashville
1310 Charlotte Ave.  615-327-0722

Rutherford County

EuroFix Murfreesboro
1950 NW Broad St.  615-900-3460

EuroFix La Vergne
331 Waldron Rd. #800  615-793-2277

AutoFix La Vergne
315 Waldron Rd.   615-751-0321

When you live in an “it’’ city, it’s important to have an “it’’ car, or at least that seems to be the thinking given the number of high-end imports seen around Middle Tennessee these days.

Seeing that trend and capitalizing on it, Eurofix has doubled its operations in and around Nashville, as well as launching Autofix, which will tend to the needs of American-made vehicles.

Eurofix began in 1999, when owner Aaron Stokes was in an accident while traveling to North Carolina. His Saab was badly damaged, and it took months to save up for the repairs needed. The experience got him interested in car repair, and soon he’d set up “The Saab Shop’’ in his backyard garage.

Since then, the business has grown to include most all foreign makes and models, with locations in Franklin, Lavergne, Nashville and Murfreesboro. Slow, steady growth has always been Stokes’ goal, but that all changed when a series of Midas repair shops came on the market in late 2014, says Thomas Hays, who heads up business development and support for Eurofix.

“We took over all three of them at once, because the owner was looking to sell them as a unit, and the locations were in parts of town that we really saw an opportunity in,’’ Hays says.

The Midas shops were on Charlotte Pike near the I-40/65 overpass, on Harding in Belle Meade near Woodmont Boulevard and in La Vergne.

They were, as Hays puts it, “in rough shape,’’ so Stokes shuttered them and began a short-but-thorough overhaul. At the same time, the decision was made to launch Autofix on Charlotte, La Vergne and in Franklin next to the existing Eurofix.

“We’d been hearing from a lot of people with American and Asian-made cars that they wish they had an option besides going to the dealership,’’ Hays adds. “And as long as we were basically doubling in size to eight locations, it seemed like a good time to get that brand started.”

The Midas employees were offered the chance to stay with Eurofix, and most did so. That made the deal an even better opportunity, Stokes says.

“We’d looked at the market data to see where the concentration of our clients with European cars is, and the Belle Meade location was extremely desirable, he says.

“We’d begun to look for locations, and when this opportunity presented itself we knew there’d be a lot of work, but that it was too good to pass up.”

Within six weeks, the former Midas shops had been completely remodeled and were operating under the new ownership. They all reopened by late 2014, and have been doing a brisk business ever since.

“People are really enthusiastic, which is great because it was a lot of work,’’ Stokes says.

“We had to run in security systems, get all the locations on our computer system so they could report back to the corporate office, get new furniture and equipment delivered and installed, and then get our system for parts and storage into all the shops. The remodeling took weeks, but the stocking was done in a day. I really can’t exaggerate how much work that was.”

As Stokes and his team had hoped, the Belle Meade location is seeing brisk business. It reopened Dec. 12, and there have been plenty of stop-ins, says Elisha Lowery, managing partner.

“There are Eurofix touches to everything, right down to the ceiling tiles and the white floors in the shop,’’ Lowery points out. “People come in for the first time and say they’ve heard great things, so the word is definitely out there.”

The Eurofix expansion and Autofix startups show that there’s plenty of room for vehicle repair in Middle Tennessee, notes Larry Thorne, one of the Global Motorsports’ owners, which has also been beefing up its service presence in the market.

“Four years ago we opened our service department at our Charlotte Pike location, and what started with one tech guy and one at the counter has grown to five techs and an operation where we are touching about 350 cars a month,” Thorne says.

“That’s with very little advertising. We’re soon going to open up another shop in Williamson County, because we see a need.

“There’s definitely room in the market for us to have plenty of business and other folks to be busy as well.

“We sell 2,500 cars a year, and every one of those folks want to know where they can get their work done. They are looking for a place where they can be well taken care of, and so we’re growing into that area.

“I’m not surprised that other people are, as well, and it’s all good news for car owners.”

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