1-800-Radiator & A/C was founded in 1982 to take advantage of the growing trend in the automotive aftermarket of radiator replacement versus repair.
The initial warehouse in Union City, California, was one of the first outlets in the country dedicated to the wholesale distribution of new aftermarket radiators. We opened a second warehouse, in Sacramento, in 1989. Throughout the 1990s the principal strategy for growth by 1-800-Radiator & A/C involved geographic expansion to provide same-day or next-day delivery to customers across the United States.
Outlets were opened in Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta, Dallas, and Kansas City. At the same time, sophisticated marketing programs were established, and the telephone number 1-800-Radiator and the URL www.radiator.com were acquired. By 1996 the 1-800-Radiator brand was well known.
The customer database had grown to include information on more than 200,000 repair and body shops, and the direct-marketing effort included approximately 500,000 mailings per year. By 1998 there were over 15 locations. Over the next five years, a number of initiatives were launched to further establish itself as a leader in aftermarket radiator distribution, including the acquisitions of distributors in North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Oklahoma, Las Vegas, Texas, and Southern California.
During this period the Company also established an Internet sales department, acquiring more than 1,000 URLs related to the radiator and general automotive parts aftermarket. Total system-wide sales grew by an annual growth rate of roughly 22 percent over the five-year period (1998-2003).
Why Our Franchise?
The 1-800-Radiator & A/C franchisee has on average 1,000 automotive type businesses as its primary customers, including parts stores, gas stations, repair shops, body/collision shops, new and used car dealers, junk yards, and radiator repair shops. A fully integrated proprietary software system (System) gives franchisees a strong competitive advantage over local competitors in their market.
The System contains algorithms which produce superior breadth and quality of inventory, which allows sourcing from over one hundred major manufacturers by utilizing a robust "stocking mechanism" in its software. The System helps fine tune each and every market to have a unique inventory mix tailored to the specific vehicles in that market. When a customer calls, the exact correct part is almost always on hand at the franchisee's warehouse.
Chart indicating upward growth of sales, productivity and profitability.The System also contains a "Customer Relationship Management" (CRM) feature providing superior marketing formulas. The CRM automatically tracks every phone call, every mailing, every in-person sales visit, every comment, and every sale made to each of the customers in the territory. The system constantly analyzes the data in order to give the franchisee efficient direction on where to focus next with marketing efforts.
The System also provides instant up-to-date information on profitability, sales performance and employee productivity.