A strong emphasis on customer service and leveraging the power of Fix Network means a promising future for this historic automotive service brand.
In May, Zakari Krieger was named Vice President of Prime CarCare at Fix Network in Canada. For Krieger, this represents the next stage in a successful career that has already seen him gain strong managerial and leadership experience within the automotive aftermarket.
“This industry is in my blood,” says Krieger, who grew up in a family auto parts business. By the time he was old enough to attend university, the auto care sector was beginning to change, adopting digital wholesale and retail on a large scale. On completion of his studies, Krieger saw an opportunity for deploying widespread e-commerce and analytics to create business efficiencies at his family business, understanding the need for the business model to adapt and change in tandem with the evolution of automotive and broader global business changes.
While earning an MBA, Krieger later took the reins of the company—acquiring an ownership stake and taking on the role of Managing Director in 2019.
“Always looking for personal and professional growth, I began to feel the need to take on new challenges and step outside my comfort zone,” he explains. “I did a lot of hard thinking about what the next phase of my career would be.” When an opportunity came to join the Fix Network, Krieger jumped at it. “Combining strong management and leadership skills with a background in finance, strategy and working in the aftermarket was seen as the perfect recipe.”
And so, having divested his interests in the family business, Krieger was ready to open a new chapter. Opportunity came knocking when Fix Network had a position available for a Vice President role within the mechanical sector. “They were looking to hire somebody to run their Prime CarCare business unit, which included Speedy Auto Service and NOVUS Glass, and I felt with my own experiences and passion for the business it was a very good fit.”
Speedy Auto Service, which currently has 66 locations across Canada, is one of the aftermarket’s oldest and most iconic service repair brands, having originally been established in 1956. Acquired by Fix Network in 2017, it has been rejuvenated with major investments in technology, training, equipment and support for franchisees. “We’ve seen a major shift in our industry over the last 10-15 years,” Krieger explains. “There’s a lot more focus today on data analytics, reporting, utilizing KPI dashboards and other technology solutions and how they fit within the business model. Shop owners are assessing and running their businesses differently.”
Elevating the customer experience
Krieger notes that a major goal for Fix Network, as it relates to Speedy and Prime CarCare, is to continue elevating the customer experience across the network of locations, leveraging the power and capabilities of technology available, as well as providing solid support and business intelligence to franchise partners.
We have a goal of continuing to increase market share—strategically—but that means focusing on creating value and differentiating ourselves.”
— Zakari Krieger, Vice President, Prime CarCare, Fix Network
An early part of that has been the rollout of the Speedy Zone experience, where, utilizing Hunter’s digital inspection equipment, customers can get an accurate readout of their vehicle’s overall health in less than 30 seconds. “We believe this is the just the beginning of our journey in supporting improved transparency and customer retention, and will continue to evolve as both the market and customer expectations change. With the evolution of automotive technology, including the development of EVs, we are always evolving to lead our partners in the right direction and to manage this change.”
Fix Network is in a unique position. As a global auto care provider, they’re able to leverage resources on a very large scale. They also have their own purpose-built corporate training centres. The latter enable ongoing staff development and training across all brands within the Fix Network, including their collision, glass and mechanical business entities.
“One of our core pillars is training,” Krieger explains. “And the investment [Fix Network] has made in our training centres exemplifies a steadfast commitment to leveraging our capital in the evolution and success of both the industry and our partners.”
He notes that often, independent business owners can find it challenging to embrace wholesale change, particularly when it comes to the investments and training required. That’s where being part of a network like Prime CarCare and Fix can really make the difference. “One thing we used to say in our family business is that it wasn’t about parts, but partnerships,” says Krieger. And that approach applies equally today at Fix Network with Speedy—bringing forward best business practices and training as core functions of those partnerships.
“My experience with the Fix Network and our Speedy Auto Service business really reflects that,” states Krieger. “The growth of our franchise model should only be supported by our commitment to having the right partners who understand this value.” By doing so, he says, both the network and its strategic partners can optimize their business for the future, creating a winning scenario for their respective businesses, their vendor partners, their staff and their customers.