After more than 25 years in the PBE paint distribution business, one of the key lessons learned is that it is the journey as the destination keeps changing. Regardless of wins and successes or losses and disappointments—so long as the journey remains a blast, you rock on. For Eric Chan, the owner of Gard-X Automotive Refinish Inc., the key to enjoying the journey is having a fantastic crew and staff and a close human relationship with clients and vendor suppliers. It is an understatement to say there has been dramatic change in the collision repair industry in the last 10 or so years. Despite many challenges and consolidation of both collision repair facilities and distributor/suppliers, Gard-X Automotive has remained independently owned and operated and continues to enjoy steady growth.

With two locations, one in Scarborough and the other in Mississauga, Gard-X Automotive services the key southern Ontario corridor from Hamilton to the GTA and east to Port Hope. Being authorized distributors of the PPG and Akzo Nobel refinish paint brands, Gard-X Automotive has premium products to service and supply automotive collision repair, fleet and commercial and industrial finishing. Carrying both PPG and Akzo Nobel has allowed Gard-X Automotive to not only offer two of the most premium high quality refinish paint lines but also the best services support programs that include both product technical training and business development programs.
Strong vendor/supplier relationships have always been a key strategy for Gard-X Automotive. In 2019 Gard-X can still offer the promise “Satisfaction Guaranteed or a Credit Note will be issued”. Being loyal and having a good relationship with our vendors means having our clients backs as we know our vendors have ours.

With technology and “smart” being the buzz word these days, Gard-X Automotive has been at the forefront of the info revolution. Gard-X Automotive offers multiple technology pathways to streamline the collision shop materials inventory requirements. It has very successful implementations of both the Lean-Tec and Saint Gobain TIM inventory management systems. Both are cloud based software utilizing bar code scanning of material with automatic reordering based on minimum inventory levels while also being fully customizable.

Vehicles have become increasingly sophisticated in every regard from multi-layer colour special effects to multi material construction for weight-saving occupation crash protection and that is not to mention a sensor for just about anything you can think of. Modern vehicles pose a particular challenge to today’s collision repair shops as they need to modernize with new equipment and tooling in order to perform a proper repair and meet certification requirements whether from their banner franchise or OEM dealership. Being regular attendee at international trade shows, Gard-X Automotive has a core staff well versed in the latest collision repair equipment and industry trends and has built up solid relationships with international vendors to get preferential service for its clients.

Gard-X Automotive has been a Uni Select member for over 30 years, an Across Canada member for over 15 years and works closely with CSN, Fix Auto and CARSTAR collision shops. The core client base of Gard-X Automotive however, has always been the independent owner operator many of whom Gard-X Automotive has had the pleasure of servicing for more than 25 years. The journey has truly been a memorable adventure with all of them. As long as you can still enjoy the relationships, the journey continues.