My company Motorparts Nation is making major strides in West Africa by transforming the lives of auto mechanics. My company has been actively training auto mechanics and selling American branded auto parts to repair their customers vehicles.
The US department of transportation is supporting my company as well, road injury death in Africa is on the top 10 healthcare death epidemic, next to malaria, AIDS and stroke.
Was it a lightbulb moment or gradual moment to start Motorparts Nation?
I use to bring celebrities to Dubai for the largest events ranging from Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Dubai World Cup, Festivals to Cirque Du Soleil and felt I reached my ceiling in the event industry. I was surrounded by wealth and knew I could pivot into another industry. I noticed how entertainment budgets are one of the first budgets to get reduced as it’s a want not a need. I had an aha moment to realize I need to get into an industry where my budget can’t ever be cut out.
How did you get your first three customers?
Referral based my friend introduced me to a angel investor and initially prior to investing he referred me clients to see if it would work or not.
How did you validate the idea?
Automotive auto parts are always a need, I knew the countries I targeted didn’t manufacture auto parts and relied heavily on imported auto parts.
Did you have any expertise in the area? Have you raised any money? How much?
None when I first started now I am making history. Thus far started with angel investment and now currently operate from our current sales.
Who is your target demographic?
There are over 200,000 mechanics in Ghana we are targeting 80,000 mechanics spending $1,000 per month on auto parts.
What is the funniest/most strange customer request you’ve had?
Craziest is when a potential client expected us to order over $100k worth of Mercedes Benz auto part products, pay for the shipping, and wait for him to sell it then pay us for the products.
Where did you meet your co-founder/founding team?
I have partnered with local partners in Ghana and Nigeria. We currently have a project manager, sales/marketing team and mobile mechanics
Any tips for finding first employees?
Linkedin was a great resource.
Did you run any companies prior?
Yes, in the entertainment industry I worked independently until I worked for the Dubai government to bring major events to boost the country’s tourism.
What motivated you to start your own business?
I have a vision that should be executed, I can’t convince someone else to follow my vision, I need to implement it and I’ve hired people who support the vision.
What were your family and friends first thoughts on your company?
My parents are use to me having out of the box visions, they just choose to support and add their advice on how to maintain integrity in everything I do.
What motivates you when things go wrong? What is the end goal?
The motivation is we are transforming the lives of auto mechanics in Africa. We need to change the mindset of how mechanics are being overlooked for proper training. Our program will reduce the amount of accidents for generations to come.
Do you have any advice for someone just starting out?
Yes reading books is always awesome but having key mentors for different stages works great too. Soak up as much advice as you can and also listen to your employees, they always have great ideas to grow your business too.
What has driven the most sales?
Referrals from past clients and face to face marketing campaigns through our technical training.
What is stopping you being 3x the size you are now?
A bigger team, a training facility in various regions across the countries we are target to conduct technical training in.
How do you protect yourself from competition?
For us we work with the competition locally. We choose to work with those sharing a common goal with our company rather than to compete.
Our business model requires a high volume of parts to be available and partnering with auto part suppliers makes it accessible to achieve this goal.
What are the top 3-5 apps your business could not run without? Why are they essential?
- Salesforce - Sales force to track sales and lead generations
- Formstack - to gather data from our technical trainings
- Shopmonkey - for invoicing auto parts sales software designed for auto repair shops.
What are your favourite books?
- Breaking the Habit of Being yourself
- 7 Habits of highly effective people
What are your favourite podcasts?
- Small Doses
- Switch out or quit
What are the next products you’re working on?
Scaling to new markets in Africa, currently heading to Tanzania mid August.
Are there any releases you can tell us about?
MPN is partnering with the biggest pan African bank to scale into newer countries.
Where do you see the company in 5 years?
Changing lives with our technical training to be passed down for generations to come across Africa. In the next 5 years we would have saved alot of lives by reducing the amount of accidents on the road.
Would you ever sell?
This is a possibility to do a merger or become acquired.
|Company Name:||Motorparts Nation|