Pike’s CARSTAR Collision, located in Madison, Ohio, celebrated its 30th CARSTAR anniversary at the annual CARSTAR Conference in Chicago.
Owned by Doug and Tamara Pike, Pike’s CARSTAR Collision has a long history as a dependable collision repair facility in the Lake County community. Doug, who learned collision repair at a local vocational school, entered the industry as a technician. Ready to go out on his own and work for himself, he, along with Tamara by his side, set out to make it happen.
The Pikes were managing an apartment complex of 24 units when Doug’s current employer gave him the opportunity to purchase the equipment and take over the business leases for his repair center. With the generous help of the apartment complex owners, the Pikes were able to secure the money to open their own facility. After being in business for a few years and attending management and industry sessions, they decided to join a brand new collision repair network created by Lirel Holt.
“CARSTAR in those early years really did not have much to offer its franchise partners, as there was no buying power, industry relationships or brand reputation like there is today,” said Doug. “There was some information, but the real benefit was the colleagues and having other owners knowing what you are going through but not competing against you.”
Thirty years later, CARSTAR still understands the value of that bond amongst owners and has formalized this experience into “EDGE Performance Groups” that sees owners come together to share best practices and learn about the latest industry updates.
“I am thankful to my colleagues and all of the support we have provided one another over the years, but I am eternally grateful for the incredible staff we have at our store,” said Doug. “With most of them being with us for more than 20 years, coming to us right out of vocational school, we have been able to build a dependable and trusted relationship with one another. A COPD diagnosis, awaiting a lung transplant and then undergoing a lung transplant surgery all sidelined me for a few years. During this time, the team was always there to keep the business moving forward, even with a complete rebranding happening at our facility.”
With lots of industry change happening over the past several years, the Pikes look back at how far they have come and where they see the industry going.
“I remember when we got our first computer, which was 120MB and nobody thought it belonged in a shop,” Doug said. “It is funny to look back now as we have so much technology in our facility and there is no way I could have guessed that we would be here 30 years later. I have a feeling advancements are not slowing anytime soon, and I would guess that the electric technology will continue to develop and maybe 30 years later we will have fewer gas-powered vehicles on the road.”
The Pikes have much more to look forward to as they continue to work alongside their fellow CARSTAR owners and friends in their EDGE Performance Groups. However, on a more personal note, they are excited to be celebrating their 45th wedding anniversary in 2020 and continuing to spend time with their three daughters and their families.
For more information on CARSTAR or joining the franchise family, visit CARSTAR.com.