By CRM Staff
Newmarket, Ontario — August 29, 2017 — In today’s world of brands, banners and associations, it’s sometimes easy to lose sight of the fact that most Canadian collision repair facilities are still independently owned and operated. There will always be differences in the way each location operates, as each individual owner will tailor the business to suit the local marketplace. The sign over the front door does not necessarily dictate what happens inside.
Take, for example, MAACO in Newmarket, which has recently received certification from Volkswagen and Audi, and is currently in the audit process with FCA. According to owner Steve Celli, it’s been a long road but one worth following.
“It’s been about two years since we began the process” he says. “From what I understand, Volkswagen/Audi is one of the toughest OEM certifications to achieve. We had to buy new frame equipment, 3D measuring systems, welders and of course, the ongoing training.” The costs of new equipment and extensive training add up quickly, but Celli believes OEM certifications are an essential part of being a progressive facility in today’s market.
“Most importantly, it helps to keep us current with modern vehicle repair procedures. Today’s repairs are very different from the past, and having this certification affords us the tools and knowledge required to ensure that vehicles are being repaired properly and in accordance with OEM guidelines.”
Celli has spent most of his life in the autobody industry, growing up in his father’s shop, Nation Wide Auto Body. After 15 years in the family business, Celli decided to join the corporate world, serving as an Operations Manager with MAACO Systems Canada for five years. With his heart still at the shop level, Celli moved on to purchase MAACO Newmarket in 2008. The location was out of business at the time, but he reopened the doors and set about turning the location into a fully modernized collision repair facility.
Even before the drive for Volkswagen and Audi certification, Celli and his team put in a lot of work revamping and renovating the facility to provide a clean, high-tech location and the repair quality expected by dealerships and their customers.
“It was quite a challenge, but we persevered, but this is just the beginning,” he says. “Our goal is to become certified with as many manufacturers as we can.”
Celli notes that the collision repair industry is constantly evolving and those repair facilities that wish to stay in the game must be ready to evolve as well.
“The strength and integrity of our trade depends on it,” he says.
For more information on Maaco Newmarket, please click here.