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Tuesday, 12 September 2017 16:16

New Shop Ownership in WA and ID Expands Services

Written by Marco McCray, The Daily Evergreen
Jake Stephenson, an employee of University Collision, repairs a replacement bumper on the back of an SUV. Jake Stephenson, an employee of University Collision, repairs a replacement bumper on the back of an SUV. Alex Pettit Estell, The Daily Evergreen

A local body shop is now under new management after almost four decades. Previously known as Brian’s Body Shop, it is now known as University Collision.

This shop is owned and operated by five new owner/managers with two locations in Pullman, WA, and Moscow, ID.

Marcus Lohman, one of the five new owner/managers, said the shop’s previous owner, Brian Sims, recently sold the company.

Sims owned the shop for 37 years prior to the management switch and felt ready for retirement, Lohman said.

Sims bought the company from his father when it was still located in downtown Pullman, making it a second-generation business, said Nick Carson, the head painter for University Collision. Sims relocated the shop to 2530 S. Grand Ave. 25 years ago.

Carson, who has worked for the company for 17 years, said the previous owner’s ultimate goal was to retire, and University Collision’s goal is to invest in its future and expand within the community.

University Collision does paint and collision repair. The shop cannot repair chipped windshields, but does offer complete glass replacement. Its Moscow location has a full bed liner and detail shop. The shops also have shuttling capabilities between the two locations.

University Collision will begin to introduce aluminum repairs once the rest of its equipment arrives. This shop is currently the only auto body repair company in the area that’s capable of aluminum repairs, considering the difficulty of the process, Lohman said.

Under the new management, University Collision will also implement a new estimating program, he said.

The new estimating program is an entirely online-based system. Customers only need to get a claim number from their insurance company, drop off their car and University Collision will handle the repairs, Lohman said.

The new estimating program provides customers with daily updates on their car. This includes the prices of the replacement parts, a schedule of the repair and notifications after the completion of each repair.

Once the program is fully up and running, University Collision will have one of the most advanced estimating programs around the Palouse, Lohman said.

Lohman has worked in the auto body business for the past 15 years. Prior to being an owner/manager at University Collision, Lohman worked at the Moscow location when it opened four years ago.

“We’re a new shop, but we’re not new to the business,” Lohman said.

We thank The Daily Evergreen for reprint permission.

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