A Marque of Success
DOUG Barton Motors, an icon of bayside business, has celebrated family owned and operated for over 69 years of operation with a massive revamp that has just one focus: the customer.
Long a mainstay of local commerce, and having sold thousands of vehicles to families and enterprises, the dealership has entered a new and exciting phase.
From its birth as G and B Motors in 1945, the dealership has grown through commitment to the district and a strong customer service philosophy has created a loyal clientele.
We rebuilt out existing show rooms after a tragic fire in 2004 and have again just updated our Mitsubishi and Holden show rooms
Doug Barton, Chief Executive Officer since 1982, said the fire had proved a catalyst for change. "I felt it presented an opportunity to revamp the whole site and carry out a development that would, when completed, give us the same sense of pride that we had at the opening of this site in 1972," Mr Barton said.
"I'm very fortunate and grateful to have such a long serving and loyal staff, who really put themselves into top gear," he said. The renovation has expanded the capacity of the whole dealership.
In 2014 a mini cafeteria has been included for customers, and the Holden and Mitsubishi showrooms have been thoroughly redone. "It has enhanced our ability to service our customers and meet customers' needs well into the future," Mr Barton said. "We've made a statement that we believe in this community, that we believe in the vitality of business in the community. The local community deserves, and now has, a facility that the community can be proud of."
Now with the Completion of our brand new building that will house Subaru and Hyundai along with a second 22 car bay workshops state of the art. With every possible thought for customer needs tendered to everyone who comes in to see it will be impressed.
Barton's Past Guarantees Your Motoring Future
THE strength, customer service ethic and family foundation of Doug Barton Motors are what has made the dealership a market leader. The business began in 1945 when Ken Barton, just returned from serving with the RAAF in New Guinea, teamed up with friend Alf Giles to start G&B Motors, a mechanical business.
The business was called G&B, rather than B&G, as a result of the toss of a coin on the steps of the Treasury Building. Early growth came when they secured a contract to service a local bus company.
The pair acquired new premises on the corner of Tingal Rd and Burke St, essentially a big hole in the ground that they filled with old car bodies and ash before building.
After selling petrol from a Shell bowser, the business became a sub-dealership for Coachcraft Ford in 1949 before switching to Holden the next year.
G&B Motors moved to 106 Tingal Rd in 1958 and the partners ran the Golden Fleece petrol station across the street with the help of Basil Leben, who stayed with the company for 35 years.
Another significant contributor to the business, John Harrison, joined the company as general manager in 1963 and later became a dealer principal and partner.
Doug Barton said Mr Harrison was largely responsible for the growth of the business from the 1960s to the early 1980s. The dealership moved to its present site at 200 Tingal Rd in 1972, marked by a parade from the old site to the new. "Hundreds of local people attended that. It was a big day for Wynnum," Mr Barton said.
"At that time it was considered to be a very modern facility - purpose-built." Doug Barton followed his father into the business in 1973 as a new Holden salesman, took over as dealer principal in 1980 and bought the business in 1982, changing its name to Doug Barton Holden.
The Mitsubishi dealership was added in 1992 , leading to a renovation and the mezzanine floor's installation, creating upstairs office space.
Mr Barton said another major renovation was done in 1998 "really due to growth" and to ensure customer needs could be met. After the 2004 fire, Mr Barton worked with experts from Holden and Mitsubishi to design and build the renewed dealership.
Enormous Sense of Pride and Culture
THE culture at Doug Barton Motors is what makes it a great place to do business, says dealer principal Mark Beitz.
Whether it was new car sales, used car sales, servicing or parts, Mr Beitz said the customer approach was the same. "There has been an enormous sense of pride and a very strong culture established over the last 69 years," Mr Beitz said.
"I credit this to the dedication of Doug Barton and his commitments to initiatives such as our Customers for Life Program and our internal company culture and values document." Doug has instilled in myself during the time I have had with the company that our customers must always come first and our priority is to ensure that we both meet and exceed our customers' expectations.
"In this day and age this is not an easy task but one which we certainly strive for each and every day."
Mr Beitz said the company believed in "creating customers for life", whether it was in any of our 4 top brands, Holden, Hyundai, Mitsubishi or Subaru, our new state of the art facilities for Service or Parts, or our used vehicles apportions, we are in this for life.
"It is interesting to note that while we advertise and market extensively, over 60 per cent of our business is from previous customers, their friends and families," Mr Beitz said.
"We must be doing something right." Mr Beitz said as winning both the Holden Grandmasters and Mitsubishi Distinguished Dealer awards in the same year has never been done before. Now Bartons has taken home the 2 prestigious awards in the same year 3 times. We believe we are leaders in customer service.New with 2 workshops include 40 bays and 30 hoists, our workshops are geared for the next 30 years in automotive repairs.
"The growth in the business and fleet market is also an opportunity for our company, given our proximity to the growth areas such as the Port of Brisbane precinct. Whilst we have a strong and successful business, we must develop and grow with demand and our newly renovated facilities are our commitment to the community that we are prepared for the future."
Service Built on Strong Tradition
HE earliest incarnation of the Barton family business, G&B Motors, was built on servicing the vehicles of local people and businesses.
That foundation is now a strong tradition that has been at the heart and soul of how Doug Barton Motors does business. Thousands of people have bought new and used vehicles from the business, and they keep them in great shape by using the skill, expertise and dedication of the service department.
Doug Barton said the improvements to the service department meant the dealership was better prepared than ever to give great service to local motorists. Bartons has the first company in the southern hemisphere to install the ingrate 2 post host.
The workshop staffs say they are the best team they have ever worked with.Bartons is newly equipped with 1hour service facilities and super express dedicated bays in 3 of the 4 brands, so when you on move, time is never an issue.
"It's not only visually made a difference," Mr Barton said. "It has enhanced our ability to service our customers' needs well into the future."
Dealer Principal Mark Beitz said: "Our ultimate goal is to get things right the first time. "We strive for that and to make it as easy a process for the customers as possible. "It's got to be affordable and, I think, it's follow-up."
Service Built on Strong Tradition
Photographer: Wynnum Herald
Staff members at Doug Barton Motors are one of the driving forces behind the continued success of the dealership. Doug Barton said his employees, many of them locals and some of whom have be enserving for decades, were the backbone of his operation. Mr Barton praised his staff for what they had achieved during the difficult period of renovation work.
Mr Barton and Mr Beitz strongly believe in staff retention, and have a growing number of staffs who decided their career to the company with the years of service growing right throughout our business, with over 60 years of experience alone for John Kontos, Denis Carlson & Michael Atkinson. He is not just our sales staffs that love working at Bartons we have multiple technicians that gave engaged working at Bartons for decades as well.