By Erin McLaughlin
Toronto, Ontario -- October 26, 2017 -- The year was 1991 when Mark Puente's stereo was stolen from his car. His insurance carrier paid him for his loss, but he was on his own to get it replaced. He knew there had to be a better way. The experience led him to found Premiere Services, a company specializing in the delivery of on-site replacement of automotive stereo equipment. Some 26 years later his company is still at it, providing services in all 50 US states and most provinces in Canada.
Recently, the company has forged into a new area, refurbished OEM mobile electronics. With growing frequency, vehicle owners are damaging their OEM stereo and entertainment equipment, whether it be a coffee spill or a cracked screen, and finding the cost of repair is staggering, In fact today, the average replacement cost for an OEM stereo system is in excess of $4,000. And with no previous option other than to purchase new from a dealer, car owners were left with a choice to pay the high cost of repair or simply do without. That is until Premiere got involved.
Premiere Services acquires salvage stereos, refurbishes them and deletes any personally identifiable information, then sells them under its QRP product line.
“Customer need really inspired our product,” said Puente. “Costs of repairs are growing exponentially, and as computers get more complex, they become more sensitive to things like spilled coffee or collisions—much more so than other car parts. This means systems are getting damaged far more regularly.”
The costs for these systems, purchased new, can be very high. In fact, some vehicles could even become total losses just because a video display screen breaks.
This is likely to become even more common as older vehicles in the North American fleet are replaced with newer models. According to Puente, by 2018 all vehicles sold in the United States will be required to have cameras and video screens (similar legislation is still pending in Canada, though vehicle cross-over mean many new cars in Canada will have similar technology, regardless of requirements). That comes to about 11,000,000 new cars being sold with cameras a year, in the United States and Canada.
According to Puente, Premiere Services QRP solution makes these parts available at a much lower cost than new OEM. He believes there are several notable benefits to reconditioning OEM mobile electronics. First, it reduces cost substantially. Neither the customer nor the collision repair facility has to deal with the steep cost of a brand-new infotainment system. In theory, this could change some cars from totals to repairable jobs.
Second, it’s a more environmentally friendly product. “You’ll find a lot of toxic chemicals in these, like lead and zinc. Instead of tossing these chemicals in landfills or producing more of it, we can put these chemicals back out into the market and get more use out of them,” said Puente. “We’re keeping claims green.”
Premiere Services guarantees their products will work, offering lifetime warrantees and technical support online or over the phone.
For more information about Premiere Services, please visit operationsaferoad.com.