Vehicle Manufacturer PSA held a press conference at Equip Auto to explain its plans for expansion in the independent aftermarket, but has been candid about the performance of its garage network in the UK so far.
When asked by CAT if she was satisfied with the results from Eurorepar in the UK to date, Delphine Lafon Degrange, VP of the IAM Business Unit said: “Can I be honest? No! …We have started the brand from scratch, but there is still work to be done”.
Lafon Degrange explained that a number of issues had hampered the chain in the two years since its founding, including logistical issues that caused problems with supply and availability as well as the challenge of launching an operation of its type in a market that doesn’t have the same tradition of franchise-based independent workshops as the continent.
However, Lafon Degrange remained optimistic about the future of the network in the UK. Announcing that ‘Distrigo’, PSAs new multi-brand range, will also cover Vauxhall and Opel parts, she also announced that the firm will launch a new range of used body panels through Distrigo under the Renew brand. UK distribution is to be confirmed, but the offensive will be serviced from 130 hubs across Europe, plus eight in Turkey.
Plans to develop what Eurorepar can offer includes a glazing service, a new customer-facing booking and quote website and a special ‘B2B label for professional customers’.
Lafon Degrange also announced the deployment of an online catalogue called ‘Service Box Multi-Brand’ and explains plans to develop consumer parts website Mister Auto in the UK, while acknowledging that the site had ‘strong competition online’ in the UK.