No slow down for cosmetic vehicle repair company despite cost-of-living crisis

Cosmetic vehicle repair business, Smart, has increased its turnover 23% in the first quarter of this year.

The Leeds company, based at 18,000 sq ft freehold premises in Weaver Street, saw its turnover grow to £2.1m between January and March this year. Overall turnover is predicted to rise to more than £9m this year.

The recent appointment of experienced technicians across the south west of England and south Wales means the company now has more than 100 staff across the country, with 40 based in Leeds.

At least another 15 technicians are being recruited later this year, including new staff to strengthen Smart’s operation in Yorkshire.

Darryl Short, managing director, said: “This has been a tremendous start to the year for us, the most successful we have ever had. 

“Our decision to expand our operations to service the whole of the UK, rather than just the north of England, has paid off handsomely.

“Apart from making serious inroads in Cornwall, Devon, Cardiff, Swansea and Newport, we have recently expanded into Scotland and we have further sustainable growth plans for the North West, the Midlands and the area by the M25 around London.”

Smart is co-owned by its founder Dan Besau and major investor Phil Newstead. The company carries out more than 200,000 vehicle repairs a year.

As part of its national expansion programme this year, Smart has invested over £500,000 in its van fleet and equipment.

Besau said: “Our expansion plans, which have gathered pace post-Covid, are very carefully targeted at geographical areas which are not especially well served by cosmetic vehicle repair companies.

“These plans have been massively backed up by the talented and hard-working team leaders and technicians we have been able to hire.”

Newstead added: “The second-hand car market remains buoyant, despite the cost-of-living crisis and the current economic uncertainty.

“The supply of new cars is also starting to normalise and this will have a further positive impact on our business.

“We can see that our future lies in providing a quality repair offering across all of the UK, to warranty companies, insurers, dealer groups and vehicle remarketing companies. Our key aim is to be the largest smart repairer in the UK.”

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