The Boyd Group, parent company of Gerber Collision & Glass, reported 2017 full-year revenue of $1.6 billion, a 13-percent increase over 2016.
The Winnipeg-based consolidator added 105 locations in 2017 and now has more than 500 across North America, according to the company.
Adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) increased 17 percent to $145.6 million.
The Boyd Group reported strong numbers despite “significant headwinds,” CEO Brock Bulbuck said, referring to the mild winter, Hurricanes Irma and Harvey and “an unfavorable currency environment.”
Bulbuck also noted that the company took a fourth-quarter hit from the technician shortage, “which hampered our ability to meet the overall demand for our services in the majority of our markets and therefore negatively impacted same-store sales growth.” Boyd Group’s Q4 same-store sales were up 1.4 percent from fourth-quarter 2016.
“We have been working to address this shortage with a number of initiatives to attract new technicians and increase retention,” Bulbuck said. “To date, this has translated into improved same-store sales growth in the first quarter, moving toward but not yet reaching our historical levels of average quarterly same-store sales growth.
“Adding to the initiatives that we put in place in 2017, we are also now rolling out enhancements to our benefits for U.S. employees that will be funded from a portion of the tax savings that will be realized from the recently announced U.S. tax reform. These benefit enhancements include increasing vacation pay and holiday pay for technicians, as well as doubling company contributions and caps for our 401(k) retirement savings plan.”
The savings from President Trump’s corporate tax cuts will cover up to 50 percent of the cost of the benefit enhancements, according to the CEO.
The Boyd Group, like the other consolidators, has aggressive growth plans. With around $400 million in cash, the company has plenty of “dry powder” to scoop up more body shops, Bulbuck noted.
“In summary, we are confident that in 2018 we will continue to progress toward our stated goal of doubling the size of our business on a constant-currency basis from 2015 to 2020,” Bulbuck said.