Linda Huber - CEO of Color Glo

Date: SEP 11th, 2012

Topic: Interview with a CEO

BeTheBoss.ca: Tell us about the Color Glo concept.

Linda Huber: The name “Color Glo” was chosen because we are experts in the field of color matching repairs or restoration projects to the same color on which they have been made. The use of colors in our industry is unlimited. Color Glo specializes in the cleaning, repairing, restoring and re-dyeing of leathers, plastics, vinyl, velour, fabrics and carpet. Exterior blemish repair specializes in stone chips, scratch removal, power polishing, buffing and shining. Thus, bringing the color of your vehicle to a shine once again.

BTB: How and when did you become involved with Color Glo?

LH: Color Glo Canada is a family owned and operated business by Linda, Larry and Darcy Huber. We started franchising in Canada in 2000. Darcy had worked as a mobile technician for three years for a Franchisee, and in 1999 we decided to contact Color Glo International to buy our own franchise. One thing led to another and we became the master franchisor for Canada.

BTB: What was your background prior to joining Color Glo?

LH: Larry owned and operated a Century 21 Franchised outlet in Prince Albert, SK prior to sales and marketing for Color Glo Canada. He has also owned/operated a very successful retail clothing outlet for over two decades. Linda has been in the office management, sales and bookkeeping profession for over two decades. Darcy has been a Color Glo technician since 1996. Darcy is a certified Color Glo Trainer and is the Head Trainer and Support Person for Color Glo Canada.

BTB: What are some of the advantages in being a Color Glo Franchisee?

LH: Exclusive territory with full development rights to that specific area. Ability to grow the business to meet your expectations. We provide a full array of support from comprehensive training to ongoing technical assistance, seminars, product updates, marketing literature and field support. Totally exclusive proprietary water based products to provide complete color and texture restoration. A home based, mobile, be your own boss/owner, operated business.

BTB: Who is your ideal franchisee?

LH: Franchisees come from all walks of life and varied backgrounds. Be self-motivated, a personal drive to succeed and willing to work hard. Have a dedication to fulfilling their customer’s needs.

BTB: Tell us a little about the Color Glo Market?

LH: We service onsite at new and used dealerships. Major vehicle manufacturers such as GM, Ford, Nissan and Toyota choose Color Glo for their regular and warranty repairs. Used car companies as well as leasing and rental firms use our service to restore their vehicles back to like new conditions. We can do restoration of vintage vehicles, using original trim pieces. We are leaders in the furniture retail market, manufacturers, moving and insurance companies, commercial properties, restaurants and hotels. Also, the residential furniture market, recreational vehicles, marine and aviation.

BTB: What are some of the greatest lessons you’ve learned in growing this franchise?

LH: One of the biggest things we’ve learned is that despite our Operations and Training program, superior products and on-going support, a franchisee’s success is largely dependent on them. It is sometimes hard to tell if the potential franchisee shares our values and vision and has the necessary drive to succeed.

BTB: Do you have a mentor and is there someone you use for inspiration?

LH: There are two people. Darcy is my inspiration. He will work and practice until he can find a repair or a color match for just about any project. There are very few things he won’t work on. He strives for excellence so he can pass on his findings and procedures to franchisees during training, support calls and seminars. Gary Smith from CGI is my mentor. Gary helps us with franchising, marketing, and he attends all of our Canadian seminars and is a wealth of information about this industry. Since the inception of Color Glo over 30 years ago, the Corporate Vision has always been to offer only the highest quality products and training and to conduct our business with the highest morals and ethics. We have remained committed to this Vision.

BTB: What advice do you have for someone looking to acquire a Franchise?

LH: Get in touch with our office so we can give you all of the information and figures for the province and area you are interested in. Do your due diligence by checking out the territory to see what there is for dealerships, furniture stores, marine or other areas that you can seek work from. Being able to call on potential customers is one area that is essential for a successful business. We encourage all potential franchisees to take our paper work to an accredited accountant or lawyer for advice. Phone other franchisees (from our website or from a contact sheet we provide) to get their input on the business, and the franchisor and then we proceed from there.

BTB: In your opinion, why do you think Color Glo Canada would be a great opportunity for someone?

LH: Color Glo is well known throughout the world. We have a proven operations and marketing plan, if followed. Color Glo International has their own chemist and laboratory, who is continually developing new and tweaking existing products. Daily technical & field support from our Trainers. It is financially affordable as a good portion of the franchise fee is for product, equipment and training. High profit margins as product usage is minimal. Color Glo is a low cost, home based franchise business that has been very successful over the past three decades. We are mobile, therefore no real estate or employee costs. You are your own boss and get to choose where and when you work. Color Glo is virtually recession proof as there will always be items in the major market places to be repaired. We are leaders in the environmental arena. We save thousands of tons of leathers, plastics and vinyl from the landfills each year by repairing rather than replacing.