From left are Ted Davis, SPC vice president; Max Davis, president; Lori Anderson of NAPA; Chris Roshon, vice president/general manager; and Michael Farrar, NAPA assistant sales manager at the Seattle DC.Ben Miller (left), who has been with SPC for more than 10 years, is the assistant manager and a wholesale specialist at the Spanaway store. He works with store manager Dennis Thompson, a veteran of 13 years at the company.

SPC’s NAPA stores service wholesale customers throughout Puget Sound region

Training, tenured staff, and annual events drive growth for parts outlets

Spanaway, Wash.—Standard Parts Corp. (SPC) is a business that has shown continued growth since it was founded in 1977 by Rick Davis, who remains chairman of the board. Today, with seven NAPA stores in Pierce and Thurston counties, daily operations are managed by three partners: Max and Ted Davis, Rick’s sons, and Chris Roshon.

While the partners said each of their stores offer retail and wholesale parts sales, some locations are focused more on wholesale.

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At a glance:

• Stores: 7

• Employees: 80-plus

• Active partners: 3

• Warehouse size: 19,000 square feet

• Number of NAPA Auto/Truck centers serviced: 30-plus

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“Every location offers commercial delivery and has outside sales personnel working the territory,” Max Davis said.

Two of those outside sales personnel have more than 40 years of parts experience, and several store managers have more than 10 years of service with SPC. The office manager has been with the company more than 30 years.

“We service 30 NAPA AutoCare and Truck Centers, plus various major accounts, dozens of independent repair facilities, and a variety of fleet accounts,” Max Davis said. “We have a good understanding of fleet accounts and utilize the NAPA CB Fleet program.”

To service wholesale accounts, SPC operates 26 various vehicles ranging from a box truck to pickups.

NAPA Autotech training programs are offered throughout the year to commercial customers, as well as Tool & Equipment (T&E) programs. “We have one big summer T&E event in the evening with a barbecue dinner that draws hundreds of people. It’s a major event for us and helps our customers view tools and equipment they need for their shops with factory reps and SPC personnel.”

SPC also has two annual commodity sales events that offer customers specials on a variety of products with an emphasis on chemicals, fluids, and oils. The partners said Brake Kleen, engine oils, and antifreeze are huge sellers for SPC, adding that they “sell ’em all” when it comes to needed chemicals, oils, and fluids.

“Our biggest goal is to continue to be our customer’s best choice for automotive aftermarket supplies,” Max Davis said. “This requires a commitment to quality and service above that of our competition. In addition, we need to constantly evaluate our supply chain to maximize efficiency. Marketing our company is also an interesting challenge, as we see our industry changing with many traditional marketing methods becoming obsolete.”

Recruiting and retaining a “great team” is also a priority. “The biggest differentiator for us is our people,” Max Davis said. “We pride ourselves on having the most knowledgeable, hardworking, and friendly staff in our market area.”

Ted Davis added, “In addition to our team, being a locally owned and operated company helps separate us from many of our competitors.”

“Ultimately, people buy from people,” Roshon said. “In a global market, product suppliers are starting to be less of a differentiator than in the past. We strive to create an environment that makes our employees want take care of our customers. In line with Max’s point, people are the difference that set us apart from competitors. To Ted’s point, our employees love being part of a locally owned family business and the environment of creates.”

Another vital aspect of their success is having a “special employee” as part of the SPC team. Lori Anderson, with 34 years NAPA experience, is the company’s full-time liaison from the NAPA Seattle DC. As a NAPA territory sales manager, she works with the owners, store personnel, and outside sales staff to enhance all aspects of the SPC operation.

“SPC has awesome owners who are supportive of NAPA and provide excellent customer service,” Anderson said. “The company also puts a major push on various NAPA events because they want to provide value for their customers.”

“The strength and size of NAPA and Genuine Parts allows us to cut the best deals and be competitive in the marketplace,” said Ted Davis. “And the support we receive from NAPA is extensive, including our assistance from Lori and Michael Farrar from the NAPA DC regarding branding, as well as providing supplier data and tracking parts, plus offering high-quality training programs.”

Members of ASA Northwest’s Pierce County Chapter, the partners said SPC participates in meetings and sponsors events throughout the year.

With extensive academic and business backgrounds, each operating partner bring different expertise to SPC. Max Davis, who serves as president, obtained a management degree from Georgia Tech, joined SPC in 2002, has worked the parts counter, handled outside sales, and managed stores during his tenure there. Vice President Ted Davis, who worked part time at SPC in high school, has a business degree from the University of Washington and a MBA from Pacific Lutheran University, managed NAPA stores in the Boise, Idaho, area and joined SPC in 2001. Roshon, a longtime friend of Max Davis, has a business/finance degree from Eastern Washington University and worked at the NAPA Spokane DC, as well as being a store manager and NAPA district manager prior to joining SPC in 2013. He serves as vice president and general manager.

The experience and ongoing efforts of the ownership and the SPC staff have earned the company six wins in the NAPA Five Star Excellence Program, the most recent in 2018.

Parts & People

Parts & People is published monthly by Automotive Counseling and Publishing Company, Inc., a Colorado corporation, P.O. Box 18731 Denver, CO 80203, 303-765-4664. President-Lance Buchner. Founded by Lance Buchner and Dave Lucia.