CARSTAR® Collision & Glass Service started franchising in Canada in 1994 and is now ranked in the top 100 franchises by Entrepreneur. Johnny Kloeckes, better known as Johnny K, was quick to realize the potential of this up and coming brand and in 1999, he entered the franchise. Today, thanks to his motto of “dream big and work hard,” he is the president of the Johnny K CARSTAR Group and oversees seven locations, including a mechanic garage and an express damage repair shop.
“The Johnny K CARSTAR Group offers a stress-free repair process and strives to make high quality auto service easily accessible to anyone in Edmonton and the surrounding area,” he says. “I am on a quest to build an incredible group of companies that consists of unbelievably talented supporting cast members who strive to better their best each and every day, who get excited to push the limits, break down the barriers, be innovative, be solution-based and think differently. We are caring, empathetic and compassionate, not just to our customers but to each other. We are proud to apply our highest level of integrity and honesty every minute of the day.”
In 1989 Johnny K was a one-man operator working out of a rental bay. He branched into vehicle customization and restoration before buying the company where he had completed his apprenticeship and joined the CARSTAR franchise. The former one-man show now employs over 85 staff across seven locations.
While the Johnny K CARSTAR Group’s mission, vision and values are drivers of the brand’s success, the company president is also happy to point to CARSTAR’s innovation in products and processes.
“CARSTAR is definitely the leader in the ever-changing world of consolidation in the collision industry,” he notes. “CARSTAR provides all the tools you need to be a successful franchisee, but its what you do with the tools that makes you stand out.”
He continues, “In the last few years the industry has started to consolidate. We have to reduce the inefficiencies. We have to do things better, faster and more cost effective than ever before. Our customers have different expectations and cars are being built differently with more safety features. We will always have a place in the automotive industry, we just have to change and be innovative.
One such innovation is CARSTAR’s paintless dent repair.
“It’s an expert procedure that requires a skilled technician,” explains Johnny K. “The technician must carefully manipulate precise locations of metal to the correct height. This is often done from the inside of the panel, using metal rods and body picks to massage out the dents, returning the panel to its original state.”
Johnny K’s CARSTAR Express is another innovation.
“CARSTAR Express is the perfect answer to small damage, door dents, scratches and scrapes. We use special paint and sanding techniques that keep the repair areas small. This is a great alternative to more costly repair services.”
The Johnny K CARSTAR Group is as passionate about community service as it is about customer care and supports cystic fibrosis research by doing the annual Walk to Make Cystic Fibrosis History and by hosting a Shine Month every June. The group is pleased to have raised more than $4,000,000 for the cause.
“We acknowledge our corporate responsibility in our local area and are proud to have also sponsored many local sports teams such as ball hockey, basketball, curling, UFC fighters, little league baseball, soccer, slow pitch teams and more. We are proud to give back.”
Recently Johnny K was awarded the CARSTAR Ironman award for his team’s consistent outstanding performance, and for his work as a brand ambassador. He’s humbled and gratefully shares the honour saying, “I have to acknowledge my partners James and Lisa Murphy for being the first to take the chance to grow with me. I also thank my current partners, Cory Lipka, Rami Elyas, Jamey Albo, my future potential partner Cory Cividino and all my staff that have helped the Johnny K CARSTAR Group grow over the years. Without each and every one of them I could not be successful. I cannot forget to thank my wife, Randeen and my son Anten, as they have been there helping every step of the way. I am very grateful to have the people that I have in my circle. I am blessed.”
Johnny K couldn’t be happier with the decision he made 20 years ago to join CARSTAR, and he looks forward to more growth opportunities for the brand and his team, and many more years providing outstanding customer services and vehicle repairs for Albertans.
Learn more at www.carstar.ca and @CARSTARjohnnyk on Facebook.