Award winning Revive! franchisee Irmina Kowalska is making waves in the car repair industry
The world of cars and mobile-based car repairs has traditionally been almost exclusively male, with few women making it their career of choice. However, franchisee Irmina Kowalska of Revive! Basingstoke is not phased by being one of a handful of women operating in the sector.
In 2013 she and her partner Michal decided to postpone buying a house and instead invest in a Revive! franchise. The automotive repair sector was new to Irmina, but she threw herself into it, taking up the training opportunities with Revive!
She deals with a wide range of customers, from local and national car dealerships to the general public, and has been instrumental in driving sales growth for her business, gaining the Developer Gold award at last year’s annual Revive! conference.
Irmina explains: “The money we saved over the years we could have invested in a house, but we decided that investing in a business would be a better idea.
“Like many people starting a business, we wanted to be in more control of our future. Being part of a network really helps, as we have other franchisees around us who will help if we need it, as well as the support from head office.
“Head office have been there for us since day one - they help us with everything. It’s not just a phone call, it’s all the training and other support they offer to help build the business with you.
“One of the best moments was winning an award for business growth at the last Revive! conference, something I’m very proud of.
Employees to business owner
When she started her business, Irmina wondered how she was going to attract customers, answer phone calls and get more jobs. “It was all new territory for us,” she says. “But everybody at head office was so dedicated to us, from helping us call and win customers to guiding us in our first week. Most of our customers are regulars and a lot that we gained in that first week are still with us, so obviously the support we got from Revive! meant a lot.”
Of the Developer Gold award, Irmina says: “We felt all the work and effort we’ve put into our business was recognised by head office. It made us proud and want to go further with the business.
“It’s an exciting time for us. We’ve got a new employee starting and we’ll be more focused on management and training to improve their skills.”
Over the years, Revive! has invested in building an experienced team to support its franchisees, as well as a leading edge IT platform that has transformed the business. No wonder that in 2018 the company won the British Franchise Association HSBC award for franchisee support.
At a glance Revive! Auto Innovations (UK)
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