One Stop Parts Source opens new distribution center and adds product lines
Santa Ana, Calif.—In 1989, One Stop Undercar was founded in Santa Fe Springs, Calif., as a two-step undercar warehouse, providing hot-shot parts delivery of premium brakes and ride control parts to independent installers and repair facilities, said Mike Thompson, One Stop Parts Source CEO.
“A combination of exceptional customer service and support, competitive pricing, and a strong marketing and promotional agenda soon made One Stop the leading distributor of undercar parts in Southern California,” he said.
As the business grew, customers starting asking for broader parts offerings, including underhood, cooling, and engine management components. So, the company changed its name to One Stop Parts Source and now represents more than 60 product lines from major U.S. manufacturers as well as selectively sourced offshore suppliers.
The company decided to modify its business model, and in 1993 opened its first franchise location in Orange, Calif., owned by Martin Drobis.
“Martin’s business has continually grown and he has expanded his own parts warehouse building,” said Thompson, who has 35 years’ experience in automotive aftermarket parts sales and management.
Since then, the company has established six corporate-owned locations throughout Southern California and five franchise locations with clearly outlined protected territories, including Anaheim, Buena Park, Signal Hill, Temecula, and Monterey.
“We also have four company-owned locations in Colorado, which opened in 2003, including Denver, Englewood, Broomfield, and Aurora, with a fifth location opening soon,” Thompson said. And we’re opening a distribution center in Denver in the next few months.
Commenting on the difference in the parts matrix between California and Colorado markets, Thompson said the underhood, cooling, and engine management parts mix is about the same but suspension and differential parts are different.
“Because of the four-wheel-drive/all-wheel-drive influence in Denver with Subaru, Jeep, and off-road vehicles, there’s a significant difference in chassis and suspension parts sales.”
Today, the company carries more than 60 aftermarket and OEM lines, including engine and fuel management, air, cabin, fuel, and oil filters, wiper blades, suspension, ultra premium brake components (with OEM coverage), and drivetrain components.
Not counting the staffs at the franchise locations, the company has 14 inside sales reps, 12 outside sales reps, 35 delivery personnel, and 100 contract drivers.
Thompson said training at One Stop takes many shapes from direct vendor training on hybrids, engine management, and ABS repairs from companies such as Dorman, Standard Motor Products, and Centric for outside and inside sales representatives, to online interactive vendor training.
“Most recently, the training has been focused on our new sales and catalog software from Epicor with its Vision, Compass, and LaserCat3 packages,” he said. “In addition, we have also introduced a new cloud-based phone solution.”
The company has made a significant number of changes to its vendor array and added several new lines including Federal Mogul, NGK, GB Manufacturing, ACDelco, Denso, Exide, Johnsen’s Chemicals, Zerex, and Bosch, Thompson said.
“The brake category is still our best seller due to our undercar heritage, with Centric being the No. 1 brand,” he said.
One Stop is affiliated with the National Pronto Association, which gives the company access to a lot of new lines.
“We now we have a large inventory of premium Pronto oil and fluids on hand in our new DC, as well as Johnsen’s and Zerex.
“In all we have more than 400,000 SKUs for vehicles all the way back to the 1960s,” he said. “So it’s very likely that we have the parts our customers need to repair virtually any vehicle.”
Parts proliferation has made the process of stocking inventory for the average installer a daunting task, Thompson said. So One Stop tries to encourage its customers to only stock the lower average unit priced items, such as filters, bulbs, and fluids, to keep delivery costs contained.
“We pride ourselves on having a fill rate in the high 90-percent range and quickly shipping parts so shops can get their customers’ vehicles back on the road quickly.”
The key to marketing One Stop to its customers is not a sale or spiff, even though they have them, tracked by outside salesmen, inside salesmen, and customers for effectiveness, Thompson said.
“Our goal is to be the best value for our customer with availability, quality, price, delivery, and expertise, day in and day out,” he said. “And to create value for our franchisees for their participation and payment, not just sell them the name.”