CASE STUDIES:

Ron and Wendel Burt started in the tire business in 1977, working for Goodyear Tire and then for a local independent tire sales and install shop. In 1991, the two brothers decided to set out on their own. After mustering courage (and scraping up resources), they opened the first Burt Brothers store in Bountiful, Utah. Building on the motto of “Burt Brothers Does It Better”, the chain expanded to currently 15 operating locations, with more planned for the future, becoming the largest independent tire sales and auto service business in northern Utah. At the end of 2018, Ron and Wendel decided it was time to start transitioning out of the business and sold a majority share of the business to their five sons who had been working in the business. In 2021, Burt Brothers was voted the “Top Shop” by Tire Review magazine for being the best independent tire and service dealer in the US.

Industries

Tire sales and auto service business

Challenge

The sale of majority ownership of the business to the next generation of Burt Brothers resulted in moving from a fairly simple organizational structure to multiple companies with multiple owners having varying interests and objectives. Further, operational oversight responsibilities were divided up based on the skills and interests of the now five Burt Brothers who had worked in the business. One of the new owners, Brandon Burt, who had taken the lead in finance and administration of the business when his father left on a sabbatical, realized through overseeing the accounting department that Burt Brothers current accounting, finance, and planning capabilities needed to improve. They did not have accurate internal financial statements, cash flow planning was lacking, and strategy/longer-term planning was not well-coordinated. He knew the Board could not keep making strategic decisions to grow and open more stores solely based on whether or not there was money in the bank. The ability to effectively manage the company buy-out program with the fathers, who were also board members, was also lacking and a significant challenge based on how it was structured. In early 2019, Brandon concluded the accounting and finance support team did not have the expertise to provide the leadership with the needed information, insight, and guidance, so they reached out to Amplēo for help.

Amplēo

Burt Brothers engaged an outsourced Amplēo CFO to provide mentoring and leadership, working with the current finance and accounting team to tighten up processes and start down a planning and budgeting path. After four months into the mentoring engagement with Amplēo, Brandon realized the company had outgrown its current finance leadership and needed someone with more experience and expertise. In June of 2019, Burt Brothers engaged Amplēo to provide “full-time expertise, part-time support” to help them get to the level they needed to better run the business and manage the affairs. With Amplēo’s help, Brandon Burt said, “We are now light years ahead of where we were before.” Now they have a plan for their sales and expenses, they have monitoring for their processes, programs to watch where they are making money and losing money, and they have a better handle on when, where, and if they can grow. They have even grown their accounting department by adding two more people through the direction and guidance of their outsourced Amplēo CFO.

Continued Success

Before Burt Brothers hired Amplēo, they were a good, growing family-owned business. However, with the added insights and direction from Amplēo, they have been able to better manage their current business and future growth in ways they had never thought of before. Now Burt Brothers’ goal is to use the increased knowledge and strategic guidance that Amplēo has provided to continue to grow rapidly and manage the health of their stores.

Quotes

“Whether you feel like your company is successful or not, I would encourage any business to hire Amplēo to come in and look at their company’s processes, financials, and how you are making decisions. Don't be afraid to let Amplēo tell you what you don’t know.” - Brandon Burt, Owner at Burt Brothers Tire and Service.

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