Two sites will open in Northamptonshire by the end of November, with plans to open 300 over five years. The business is supplied by BP Lubricants, which enjoys major branding on business signage.
Chief executive Lee Stonehouse tells AM: “This is not an idle boast. We will have five open by quarter one of 2007 and 20 stores operational by the end of that year.”
Currently 32 sites are in the pipeline, including Slough, Reading, Rugby, Birmingham, Warwick, Northampton, Wellingborough, Kettering and Watford. The growth strategy is to create contiguous territories from the Birmingham area south. The purpose-built stores are classed as retail units rather than industrial, meaning each will be located within existing key retail locations.
The company is working on initiatives to ensure the arrival of its outlets has a positive impact on the local area. It is in talks with VOSA and local colleges to create technician training initiatives, with the promise of full-time employment once the students have completed their course.
As reported in the November 4, 2005, issue of AM, a small team of technicians will work on each car from floor pits, to save time wasted using vehicle lifts.
Cars will be serviced in a maximum of 30 minutes with each store expected to service 50 cars per day and conduct 16 Xpress MoT’s. The fixed price service will cost less than £100 and MoTs will cost £44.
Stonehouse stresses that quality will not suffer. He says In ‘n’ Out will focus on the efficiency rather than speed. It will also have an unequivocal 100% customer satisfaction guarantee with technicians, store and regional managers primarily incentivized on this.
Stonehouse is keen to point out that he is not looking to confront established retailers. “Our focus is not on the incumbents, but on delivering fixed price preventative maintenance via specially constructed Drive Thru Service,” he says. “If, for example, a customer asks for a cambelt change, they will be directed to a dealer.”