‘We employ excellent mechanics, all Lithuanian’
2007-08-30 13:03:51 -
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In the latest instalment of Metro Éireann’s Meet The Boss, SANDY HAZEL speaks to Ramunas Viscinis and Donatas Bubnelis of Yourgarage in Dublin 

Ramunas Viscinis and Donatas Bubnelis are originally from Lithuania. They have been school friends since the age of twelve and are now running a successful car repair and servicing business in Dublin, Yourgarage. Viscinis was working as a massage therapist at the Four Seasons Hotel in Dublin: "When my friend Donatas arrived over to Dublin we decided that running our own business would be a good idea, we grew up together and had always said that we would do something together," says Viscinis, "so we looked around at the market in Dublin to see what might work."

Bubnelis explains: "One of the things we noticed was that any time we needed to get our cars fixed or serviced we were told by all of the garages 'We are very busy, the soonest we can fit you in is next week.' So this was the biggest indication to us that the garage industry would work for us as a business, every garage was busy."

While Viscinis and Bubnelis are not qualified mechanics, they made a decision that managing the business would be the way to go. "We have enough understanding of engines to know how to employ excellent mechanics, all Lithuanian. They are full-time and very experienced. We manage by getting the business in and marketing," explains Bubnelis.

The partners are currently located in Fairview in Dublin 3. Viscinis says:  "Initially when we set up here we used flyers into the local area. It worked well, I think people like to have a reliable garage near to them, it is handy. We put posters into all the ethnic food shops that had customers we wanted to attract. We also placed advertised in the newspapers that were read by these immigrants. We directly targeted immigrants and now we reckon that 70 per cent of our clients are immigrant and 30 per cent are Irish."

The campaign paid off and Yourgarage attracted the customers they were hoping to serve: "We have Russian, Ukrainian, Lithuanian, Polish customers. We were targeting them as we felt they would be happy to trust us with their cars. It is much easier to explain in your native language when talking with a mechanic" says Viscinis. "We use a Lithuanian accountant too for our business as this makes it easier to understand; so everything is in correct order," adds Bubnelis. The location of YourGarage is a good one: "Yes, we are on a main route into the city so people can leave their car in the morning on their way to work and we'll have it ready for the evening when they are on their way home," explains Bubnelis. "We try to offer a same day service for convenience of our clients.

However we are moving to bigger premises next month, at 9 Wellington Street Lower, Dublin 1, so we hope to add to our client list while keeping our existing clients. This was the plan, to start in small premises and see how things went. So things have gone well and now we move to bigger premises and we plan to invest in some new equipment."

Yourgarage offers service, repairs and sales; engine work, suspension, gaskets for engines, belts, brakes, clutch, exhausts, tyres and wheel tracking.

Contact Yourgarage on: 087 972 1523
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