The end of an era....

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John Green
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The end of an era....

Post by John Green » Mon 02 Apr, 2018 2:24 pm

The end of an era.

As most of our Newsletter and Facebook subscribers will know we have had both our spare parts business and workshop on the market for some time. Whilst it was announced in in early November last year, we had been marketing the business for some time before that. Being a very specialised business does limit the marketing base for such a sale and to date we have not been successful.


As of the 29th of March 2018 we will be winding down our spare parts business and concentrating on our workshop and restoration business. No new enquiries for spare parts will be quoted, however will be honouring any quotes done in the last three months and completing the many orders that are currently in progress.

This will come as a shock to some of our more regular customers, to whom we are very grateful for your loyalty over the years. Being a small family business operating in an extremely specialised market, we have realised just how lucky we were to have had the services of some of our key staff over the years. Our efforts to find replacement staff with the required skill set have been challenging to say the least, especially with the knowledge that we were doing our best to sell the business. Over 24 years we have managed to successfully support many Australasian Mercedes-Benz enthusiasts helping them restore and then enjoy either their classic or everyday Mercedes-Benz. But as they say in the classic’s “all good things must come to an end”.

The market for spare parts is growing in unison with the ever expanding range of new Mercedes-Benz models, add this to the current surge in the classic car market and the additional increase in demand is beyond us. Our health and sanity are not worth a few extra oil filter sales and we wish to have more time to peruse our own interests.

Over the next few months we will be selling off much of the accumulated stock of new and used parts. How this will be done has not yet been decided. We would ask that you don’t flood us with “have you got” emails just yet as we work out which medium we will be using to sell off the stock.

Whilst we have now effectively closed down the spare parts arm of the business, the intellectual property is still for sale and would be a great kick starter to anyone interested in moving into the industry.

The workshop is business as usual, we are still booked out around a month in advance with work coming in from all over Australia and look forward to offering a better level of service to our workshop customers.

And who knows, maybe at last I will have enough time to get back to contributing this great forum again... :dance: :dance:



John & Sandra Green.
Inaugural OZBENZ national meet this September, all welcome to attend. https://ozbenz.net/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=25165

M.B Spares & Service 14-16 Lyell St, Fyshwick ACT. Ph 02 6239 1099

http://mbspares.com.au - Supporting Australia's Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts.

gazman
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by gazman » Mon 02 Apr, 2018 3:25 pm

I'm gutted . . . . . but thank you an all the best
1989 560 SEL King of the road

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kimrh
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by kimrh » Mon 02 Apr, 2018 4:40 pm

Sad to see such a brilliant side of the business come to an end when with such a brilliant track record and vast knowledge on the parts but can understand when trying to run a busy workshop as well.
But yes with so many models out there now can understand it would challenging!!
You have certainly helped me out over the years and even went the extra mile to ship an SEC coupe rear windscreen to me in a large box across Aust when i needed one.
Great service John & the team and much appreciated your backup over the past 10yrs!!!
87 White Euro 500SEC "ECE" 195kw
88 Black Euro 560SEC 220kw
89 Midnight Blue Euro 560SEL hydro 220kw AMG Kitted
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Ivanerrol
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by Ivanerrol » Mon 02 Apr, 2018 4:49 pm

Best of luck with the continuing workshop business John.

I'd like a dollar for every time I've been asked for a good honest place to get a M.B. serviced or fixed.

The spare parts business is obviously slowing down to slim margins and a lot of time spent chasing clients bits and pieces.

The Big internet sellers - F.C.P., Pelican, EEuroparts plus a few U.K. based mobs are infiltrating the internet market. Even with international shipping and import taxes and GST it's hard to compete.

Another M.B. parts seller friend of mine has also wound down this side of the business. He withdrew his workshop and older model parts business and is now concentrated on the insurance side importing genuine body panels for late model cars. His parts business now consists of being a middle man for Imparts.
W211 - E240
W204 - C280
Departed
W202 - C200, C180, C180
W126 - 380SE , 380SE (Ex SA Import), 560SEL
W124 - 300e, 260e (ex Japan)
W111 220s (Indonesia) 4 speed manual column shift
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cuisses
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by cuisses » Mon 02 Apr, 2018 7:29 pm

This is sad news, but I completely understand the decision. Running a small business like this one with so many different parts is always going to be difficult, particularly when "good help is hard to find these days." Both Murray and Chris have moved on, and even though I had great faith in Chris's ability to work miracles, I suspect he is not coming back.

All I can say is that a great opportunity for someone young and energetic is going begging. The spare parts business was never short of customers -anyone who has visited the place knows that the phones ring continuously, and with sufficient staff it could run 24/7/365.

I wish John and Sandra better health and more sanity in the future, now that things will be simpler, and great success in the car-fixing business, particularly as my W108 is booked in for the 17th ...
David Williams

W108 280SE 4.5 (Papyrus White and Palomino)

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John Green
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by John Green » Tue 03 Apr, 2018 7:30 am

Ivanerrol wrote:
Mon 02 Apr, 2018 4:49 pm
Best of luck with the continuing workshop business John.
I'd like a dollar for every time I've been asked for a good honest place to get a M.B. serviced or fixed.
The spare parts business is obviously slowing down to slim margins and a lot of time spent chasing clients bits and pieces.
The Big internet sellers - F.C.P., Pelican, EEuroparts plus a few U.K. based mobs are infiltrating the internet market. Even with international shipping and import taxes and GST it's hard to compete.
Another M.B. parts seller friend of mine has also wound down this side of the business. He withdrew his workshop and older model parts business and is now concentrated on the insurance side importing genuine body panels for late model cars. His parts business now consists of being a middle man for Imparts.
The margins were not the problem. It was the ever expanding range of Mercedes-Benz products, coupled with the difficulties getting staff with the right skill set. Even with us doing zero promotion of the business and only using 2 of the 4 phone lines we have we were still experiencing significant annual sales growth. We never set out to try and beat the local wholesalers like Imparts or even the big online stores, that would be futile. Our strength lay in being able to talk customers though there purchases, many of which were happy to pay the higher price, just to have the service we offered that the online stores can't.

We are however greatfull for just how far we got with the staff that we did have.
Inaugural OZBENZ national meet this September, all welcome to attend. https://ozbenz.net/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=25165

M.B Spares & Service 14-16 Lyell St, Fyshwick ACT. Ph 02 6239 1099

http://mbspares.com.au - Supporting Australia's Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts.

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Re: The end of an era....

Post by CraigB » Tue 03 Apr, 2018 11:39 am

Good to hear you are guided by looking after yourself John and sounds like you have it all covered. Off to see a mate now with an inoperable brain tumour at 54 who was busily stressing himself and working his butt off prior to that. I find it amazing though the same story i have heard before - eg. Power Brakes in Adelaide when they closed down their Norwood branch and I said - I guess the land is so valuable now and demand dropped with people rolling over new cars more often etc - but not at all, plenty of demand and purely driven by not being able to get skilled workers and/or apprentices to keep two places running. Just seems nuts. Over the years I increasingly bought from the 'cheap' suppliers (partly as my car 'habit' increased and extra savings helping to service that) but also had my share of situations where its not the right part and your freight means its a lost exercise. If you needed to get the right part and fast, and know the ins and outs of different part manufacturers of same item etc etc - then there was only ever one place to go.... but no longer! That goes for the dealers to and even with the chassis number to work off they can still hand you the wrong part for your car.
Craig Baulderstone
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by AMG » Tue 03 Apr, 2018 12:19 pm

Obviously there was quite a lengthy and serious consideration given prior to the decision being made, and again, obviously not a decision taken lightly.

It is a difficult road to travel when business is growing, yet the 'real' economics (work-life balance) do not make sense.

For this reason I applaud your decision to quit whilst ahead. Health and happiness are far more important than being a slave to your occupation.

I only wish I could find myself in a position where I could say 'stuff it' and enjoy the reduction in stress and live on 'one's own terms' rather than chained to a corp salary.

It's not too late. I do envy your ability to make this decision, knowing how much impact events over the last decade have impacted your health and the business.

It'll be great to see 'young John' back on deck after it's all wound up and sorted.

Congratulations are in order :occasion5: even though we're all going to be a little more than sad to see MB Spares close that roller door for the last time.

I'm pretty sure I want to be there on the day, so let us know. We should have a farewell party!
:occasion5:
Current:
1987 560SL 4sp. auto Signalrot "Stella"
1987 190E 2.3-16 5sp. man. Blauschwarz "Hermann"
1992 300CE-24 6sp. man. Perlblau / Iceblau "Gretel"
1992 Range Rover Classic 4sp auto Ardennes Green "Oswald"
2012 E63 AMG Speedshift MCT Diamantweiß "Klaus"
Previous:
1986 560SEL Anthracitgrau "Schultz" - In Mercedes Heaven
1987 190E 2.6 4sp. auto Signalrot "Sabine" - which now resides/owns Andrew M's Garage
1972 350SLC Astralsilber "Lurch" - now in the loving care of Craig B
1989 2.5-16 Blauschwarz 4sp. auto (parted) formerly owned by Derek/Hasan.
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by tsharkey » Tue 17 Apr, 2018 1:47 pm

Hi John,
Thanks for all the support and guidance re W123 parts - particular the more exotic stuff.

It's a frustrating that you couldn't find someone to sell these businesses to (yet), in many ways they should form the Superannuation that your years of hardwork and accumulated IP have built up. I hope someone, somewhere sees the value in taking this on.

Anyway, enjoy the next phase. I am not far off it myself and in many ways can't wait !

Tim/
W123 1981 300TD - Family Kid mover
W202 1998 C250D Factory OM605A Turbo - Partner's daily driver
W123 1982 300CD Retro fitted OM617A Turbo - Mine
W123 1984 300TD 5 Speed Manual, to teach the kids how to drive
W123 1982 300TD Factory OM617A Turbo (Hans) - Project
W123 1985 230TE - Brother's
W123 1985 300D - Sister in Law's
1962 S-Series Valiant (Tho Daimler & Chrysler divorced, still part of the extended family)

Past benzes
W114 1969 250CE - PO put in an M110 transplant and nearly sent me around the bend
W123 1981 300TD - "Matilda" - RIP hit front side & rear but left my brother + niece A-OK

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markb
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by markb » Wed 18 Apr, 2018 5:43 am

Hi John,

Yes, I too was gutted when I heard the news last week at the MBCV Concours. Whilst I was aware you had the business for sale, I never quite contemplated it would have to 'come to an end'.... :banghead:

Thank you for almost 20 years of providing me with advice and common sense on the various MB's I have been a custodian. I must point out too, the emergency support MB Spares helped me on an particular ACT public holiday, whilst this duffus here damaged a fairly new radiator in Melbourne (John not only answered his mobile phone on that public holiday, but arranged my replacement part in Melbourne for pickup within the hour ! :notworthy: )

All the best to you and Sandra and well done for taking charge and putting yourselves first.

Cheers

Mark
Current Fleet
1985 C123 280CE Midnight Blue with blue MB Tex (240k klms, Daily Driver 2010- )
Past Benzes:
1972 W108 280SE 3.5 White (2002-2003 project)
1971 W108 280SE 3.5 White (1999-2006 Unmolested original & sadly missed)
1987 S124 230TE Diamond Blue (2002-2007 Family cruiser)
1983 W126 280SE Champagne 106k Klms (Custodian in 2013)
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by piperjon » Tue 24 Apr, 2018 7:36 am

Yes it is sad to see the parts closed out. All the best for the future John & Sandra.
Take care and god bless.
John

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Re: The end of an era....

Post by Beefa » Mon 30 Apr, 2018 2:32 pm

Thank you John for your support and professional service over the years has been greatly appreciated.
All the best for the future.
Regards
Beefa

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Re: The end of an era....

Post by eddie » Thu 03 May, 2018 2:55 pm

Good on you John, thanks for all the useful spare parts info and contact over the past few years.

All the best with the workshop and restoration business.

I will keep an eye out for spare part final stock sale

Justin
1998 W210 E240 - yawn, but like a tank
1969 Fiat 124 sport coupe - sold it...bit sad but onwards and upwards
2000 Mk4 VW Golf GTi - the german's should be ashamed - SOLD, no love lost there
1965 W111 coupe 220seb
1998 BMW M3 - interim car until the coupe is back, bit of a rocket to boot - SOLD, cant help but think I'm going to regret selling that one :think:
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ADow
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by ADow » Thu 24 May, 2018 1:43 pm

John
I was sorry to hear that you are closing down part of the business but think you are very wise to make a top priority of your health. While I have moved on from Benzs to the madness of racing a turbo charged clubman sports car, both my kids still drive cars bought from you, including my son's battered but sweet running 300D which is still going strong. I wish you and Sandra all the best through this transition phase of your lives.
Regards
Alastair
Alastair
1971 280SE 3.5 - Don Ottavio - sold
1980 300D (formerly daughter's) - Heidi - sold
1999 C200 Elegance (currently daughter's)
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by carina » Thu 21 Jun, 2018 8:48 am

Thankyou John for all your help with my W126 and Ponton parts. I’m missing Chris and Murray already. Murray, what am I saying! Good luck in the future.
Raoul
Tapitallee
1991 420se . "Flosshilde".
1982 500SEC "Goldie" .Soon to be Black.
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Re: The end of an era....

Post by PeteGong » Wed 04 Jul, 2018 11:54 am

Apologies for the newbie question, but where do we go now for our MB spare parts ? I am an old Canberra boy and have never heard a bad word about the Lyell st business

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