Jax and Quick Fit Merge
(Brisbane/Australian Tyre Dealer) Two of the best-known names in Australian tyre retailing and associated services have joined forces to become a major power in the business. JAX Tyres was established in 1949 and Quick Fit Tyre Service in 1995, both proudly Australian owned. Combined, they have a current annual turnover of around $100 million.
With the merger, the new company – now known as JAX Quick Fit Tyres – aims to build on its combined reputation to be the most respected and professionally managed automotive services provider in Australia.
“It’s taken 12 months from go to whoa but we’re very confident we are on the right track to a bigger, stronger business – and the independent research we have done confirmed this,” says new CEO, Jeff Board.
In a bid to get the merger right, Mr Board (former general manager, JAX Tyres) personally contacted every one of the 72 stores in the new group to get feedback from the franchisees and answer their concerns.
“At the time the process started, we discovered we had at least a dozen different variations to the franchise agreement. The directors took the decision that we should make a fresh start and began the consultative process to streamline the paperwork,” Mr Board says. “Now as a result of this consultation, we have a uniform agreement and our people rightly feel they have more say in their own future.
”During these working sessions, we have had the opportunity to get to know each other well and that has confirmed we have a great team. They’ve worked hard and very constructively with us to make this happen and they deserve to share the success of what they have helped create,” he added.
The new company had its origins in an approach made by QuickFit Tyre Service to JAX Tyres 12 months ago. QuickFit Tyres had a strong presence in Queensland and was growing in Victoria, while JAX Tyres had the numbers in NSW.
There was another aspect to the mix that made the idea more appealing: research showed JAX Tyres had a more mature customer base whereas QuickFit, having arrived onto the market relatively recently, was reaching a younger audience.
The suggestion was that combining the two companies would result in the strongest regional group in eastern Australia, with a broader customer mix and the power to provide them with even better value.
This new strength also offers other real benefits for customers. The original companies both were strongly committed to investing in the best equipment and training and that philosophy is now even more firmly entrenched.
A recent industry study of the tyre and undercar servicing market showed JAX Tyres to be number one in customer satisfaction and the newly blended company is keen to maintain that ranking.
However, while the concept of a merger was excellent, the process was not simple. Aside from ensuring that all the franchisees were in agreement, the new company had to create a new image combining the best elements of both names to maintain customer confidence and loyalty.
The end result is being rolled out store by store, with the honour of being first going to an all-new franchise in Haberfield, in inner-western Sydney. In an unusual twist of fate, it is only a short distance from where the original JAX store was opened by Jack ‘JAX’ Adolfsen in 1949.
JAXQuickFit Tyres specialises in tyres for passenger cars, light trucks, vans and RVs, and especially ultra high performance tyres. It also offers wheels, brakes, and suspension and associated services such as alignment, balancing and nitrogen fill.
The board brings a wealth of industry and general business knowledge to expand the new company. From JAX is Ian Hurrell, who has been managing director of the company since 1973, and Jeff Board (12 years as general manager and previously with Pirelli and South Pacific Tyres).
From QuickFit Tyres is Jeff Bowdler, who co-founded the company in 1995 after 20 years with the National Bank, and Gary Phillpotts, managing director since 2002 and previously with Bob Jane T-Marts for 17 years.
The fifth member of the new board is Marcus McAdam, principal of Quay Advisory Pty Limited, an independent corporate and project finance advisory business.