RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – Get Spiffy (Spiffy), is expanding its vehicle services footprint, including a new franchise location in Wilmington. The Triangle-headquartered company headed by Triangle entrepreneur Scot Wingo now operates in 35 markets across the country.
The company is expanding in Albany, NY, Houston, Tx., Indianapolis, Ind., and Oklahoma City, Okla. as well.
“We’ve had our eye on Wilmington,” said Wingo in an interview with WRAL TechWire. “It’s a bit on the small side, but the per-capita is off the charts and we’ve had many many requests from customers down there that hear about us in RDU and want the service there.”
The Wilmington operation is one of 10 franchise locations for the company, which operates 25 markets from corporate headquarters.
“Wilmington is rapidly expanding, particularly in Brunswick County,” said Worth Merritt, the co-owner of the Spiffy Wilmington franchise in an interview with WRAL TechWire. “We’re running out of land in New Hanover County, but people are still squeezing themselves in here.”
Merritt partnered with an existing detailer, Arthur Hill, to open and bring the franchise to the market. The franchise has been operating for a few months, and Merritt told WRAL TechWire that they began their business venture about eight months ago.
Hill began working at a car wash, and envisioned his career as one in which he would become the business owner, he explains in an interview published last week on the Spiffy website.
“I’ve lived here my entire life, and the green aspect of Spiffy fits in with some of the water issues that we’ve been having down here, so the fact that we’re not going to contribute to any sort of runoff, as our aim is to reclaim 100% of the water and the wash chemicals using our reclaim mat,” said Merritt. “These are things that are important down here, especially for those who have grown up around the water.”
They’ve had strong interest in their operations, as Hill brought in his existing clientele, and the company has begun to expand to serve businesses and fleets, as well.
“B2C is really strong,” said Merritt. “I’m really finding that there is a lot of room on the fleet side, in terms of HVAC companies, plumbers, service industry folks, and those are the types of people that we like to work with,” he noted.
That’s not to say that everything is perfect. The company is still competing for talent, in a tight labor market. But Merritt is bullish on the region, not just for an expanding client base, but also for the ability to attract workers due to the benefits the company can provide.
“Wilmington is open for business,” added Merritt. “You’re seeing all these technology companies expand down here,” he noted. “You’ll see openings everywhere for good paying jobs.”
Merritt aims to be a provider of living wage jobs, as well.
“Labor is the number one thing for us, and I think we’re in a good position here,” said Merritt. “We have a unique opportunity with Spiffy, in that we can take someone in a starting position, get them trained up and pay them a living wage, and hopefully in a year, propel them into the middle class.”
“The last year has demonstrated both a great enthusiasm for our franchise model and the strength of our corporate-owned-and-operated strategy,” said Scot Wingo, Spiffy CEO. “When you look at the diverse set of owners we currently support, it’s clear that there’s increasing interest in our industry, regardless of experience. We want to be a top choice for those seeking an entry point into mobile servicing, whether they are first-time franchisees, long-time business owners, or anything in between.”
The corporate entity raised a $22 million Series B round in October 2021, after acquiring a Tennessee company in September 2021, and continues to anticipate growth in 2022, according to a statement shared with WRAL TechWire this week.