The first parts department at Sam Pack Five Star Ford was a mini storage facility.
Twenty-seven years later, it's the largest Ford parts department in Texas.
Total revenue for the Sam Pack Automotive Group was $407,136,131 last year, more than $48 million of that from the parts department.
Sales aren't limited to in-store. Much of the revenue comes from shipping parts far and wide, Parts Manager Jerry Lowrey says.
“We ship all over the country, and if a customer orders anything by 5:30 p.m. our time, it will go out that same day,” Lowrey says.
The department is among about 25 nationwide that sell parts extensively, often to other dealers.
Success isn't limited to speedy shipments alone, says Sam Pack, president of the namesake dealership group. What's important is that customers get what they want.
“We provide a high level of service, and we support that with an inventory that provides our customers with fast-moving parts, as well as hard-to-find parts,” Pack says.
“We know people are creatures of habit,” he adds. “We're looking to develop that relationship and have an inventory that will support that relationship. You won't continue to do business with us if you call for a particular item and we don't have it.”
Pack, an ex-Ford Motor Co. employee, employs about 70 people in his parts department, a warehouse that stretches for more than an acre ( .44 ha), located about a mile (1.6 km) from the dealership in Carrollton, north of Dallas. He purchased the dealership in 1979 and also ran the Ford Motor Credit Co. in Dallas.
“When we first came to the store, we were running about $150,000 a month,” says Lowrey, who has worked at the department for 24 years. “We've gradually increased sales, and right now we do about $2.5 million a month.”
The success of its parts department helps put Sam Pack Five Star Ford at No. 131 on Ward's Dealer 500.
“We're just a basic parts department,” Lowrey says. “It sounds like I'm bragging, but thanks to the people we have here we just do things very efficiently.”