Founded 35 years ago, Groupe Del Vasto now occupies an enviable position in the automotive aftermarket.
It all started back in 1986 when John Del Vasto, a mechanic by trade, and two associates, acquired automotive parts distributor Entreposage Jarry based in Montreal.
He had previously honed his business skills by managing a heavy equipment shop, a service station, and an auto parts store. Initially, the company focused on parts distribution, but they gradually diversified by opening a series of auto parts stores and then adding a network of franchised automotive repair shops.
Groupe Del Vasto, therefore, includes Vast-Auto Distribution and the franchisor Group MMO.
Strength in numbers
Fast-forward to today, Vast-Auto Distribution has eight warehouses in Eastern Canada located in Quebec, Ontario, and the Maritimes, supplying its network of stores, of which the majority are managed by independent owner-operators.
Understanding the importance of creating an ecosystem linking parts distribution and automotive maintenance and repair service providers, Vast-Auto Distribution created the Group MMO in 1999, which in turn acquired the rights to Mr. Muffler and OCTO Auto Service Plus franchises.
This franchise offering is in addition to the Auto Value banner, which Groupe Del Vasto acquired as part of its partnership agreement with the Aftermarket Auto Parts Alliance.
Altogether, Groupe Del Vasto has a network of over 350 automotive maintenance and repair shops donning the colours of Mister Muffler, OCTO, Monsieur Transmission, Auto Value Parts Stores and Certified Service Centers.
Mr. Muffler is celebrating its 65th anniversary this year, while OCTO Auto Service Plus is turning 50! Important milestones that testify to the strength of these brands.
For John Del Vasto, the association with Alliance, one of the largest automotive aftermarket parts purchasing groups in North America, has allowed him to successfully position himself in an extremely competitive market.
All in the family
“As a group, what I am particularly proud of is the direct link that we’ve been able to establish between parts distributors and vehicle maintenance and repair shops, in which both parties benefit from the relationship,” explains John Del Vasto.
“It allows us to offer just about everything our network partners need to be successful, as when they succeed, we succeed.”
As John Del Vasto points out, Groupe Del Vasto’s 35 years have been characterized by investments, acquisitions and strategic alliances that have allowed it to emerge as a major player in the Canadian automotive aftermarket.
“But none of this would have been possible without the extraordinary people who’ve helped the company grow. We remain a family business, with values that are shared by the approximately 400 people working in our organization today.
“The close relationships that we’ve built over the years with our vendor partners have also been key to our success.”
It is on this basis that Mauro Cifelli, CEO & President of Groupe Del Vasto since 2018, supports the company’s development efforts. “Many have contributed important chapters to this amazing story,” he explains.
“But the one who wrote the book was John Del Vasto. It was his vision and passion which permeated throughout the organization. Our goal now is to continue to find solutions, remain relevant, and keep our organization moving forward.”