Few things are more frustrating than a flat tire — except perhaps the process of arranging for repairs.
Craig Howes thinks he has a solution, and the foundation for a successful business.
The Red Deer man recently rolled out GoTire Mobile Tire Service, which performs tire repairs and replacements wherever and whenever motorists require them.
“It’s a full-service tire shop, only on wheels,” said Howes, who commenced operations on April 4.
Able to service vehicles ranging from passenger cars to one-ton trucks, GoTire can do everything a tire shop can, including provide new tires. This eliminates the need to drive to a shop or, in the case of disabled vehicles, arrange for them to be towed, said Howes.
“You totally avoid the logistics of getting to and from a shop and all the pain and headache involved.”
As co-owner of the Red Deer outlet of Budget Blinds, with a fleet of six vans, Howes was familiar with the aggravation of sitting in a tire shop or having to arrange for alternate transportation there and back — especially when all of his vehicles had to go in.
“It took me 2 1/2 days back and forth to the tire shop.”
He learned about a franchised mobile tire service in Europe, and after speaking with its owner decided to do the same in North America. Howes is currently finalizing GoTire’s franchising concept and expects to roll it out within a month and a half.
“We’ve had about 20 franchise inquiries already,” he said, adding that these have come from as far away as Fort McMurray and Medicine Hat.
“We want to focus on Western Canada to begin with.”
Howes hopes to incorporate an e-commerce component into GoTire, with consumers able to buy tires online and then arrange for them to be installed when and where it’s convenient.
He’s also toying with the idea of setting up “neighbourhood tire shops,” where people could view their options in a showroom that’s not part of a noisy repair facility.
GoTire can be contacted at 403-347-TIRE (8473) and has websites under development at www.gotire.com and www.gotirefranchise.com.