Big Motor, a major used car sales company, has an estimated sales of 580 billion yen in fiscal 2022, the highest in the domestic used car sales industry. How was such rapid growth possible? “The engine of growth makes the company unprofitable(Head office: Hitachinaka City, Ibaraki Prefecture), Chairman Takashi Isozaki and President Takunori Isozaki of Isozaki Auto Works, Ltd. (Second)
Photo: Sipa USA/Jiji Press Photo
Big Motor Company logo seen in Tokyo.
Quite different from Gulliver’s rapid growth
――According to Teikoku Databank, Big Motor’s sales in fiscal 2022 were 580 billion yen (estimated for the fiscal year ending September 2022), making it the top in the domestic used car sales industry. How did you achieve such rapid growth in such a short period of time?
[Chairman Takashi Isozaki[hereinafter referred to as (Takashi) Isozaki]]According to media reports, the reason for the rapid growth is the repeated M&As, but that is not the only reason. For example, the company may open a new large-scale store and suddenly become the top in the area. No matter how you look at it, this doesn’t make sense. No matter how hard you try, it shouldn’t be that easy.
――Are you doing something wrong?
Takashi Isozaki “The driving force of growth is to make the company unprofitable” (President Publishing)
[Isozaki (Takashi)]I want to guess so. If a company continues to grow its business performance in a healthy manner, the reasons for its growth will naturally become apparent to the outside observer.
For example, IDOM is a nationwide network of used car dealers and buyers Gullivers. It was very convincing that the company, which had initially dominated the industry as a sole trader, used its know-how to enter the retail market and improve its track record.
In other words, if a company continues to make rapid progress, you can see the faces and personalities of the managers who support it, but Big Motor doesn’t feel that.
Unauthorized billing can be done if you want
――Is fraudulent insurance claims structurally possible between car dealerships and insurance companies?
[Takuki Isozaki, President[Taku Isozaki]]I agree. Depending on how you do it, you can make as many fraudulent charges as you want, and in fact, I feel that it was worse before. In the past, checks by insurance companies were not as strict as they are now, and once the adjuster (insurance adjuster) gave the OK, the insurance money was paid smoothly.
The point is how car dealers position non-life insurance companies. Do you regard it as a mere subcontractor, or do you build a relationship as a partner?
We also undertake sheet metal work (repairs) from end users, and 20% of them are referrals from non-life insurance companies. If a customer who has been introduced to us asks for an unreasonable repair fee, or if an illegal claim is made on the insurance and it is discovered, the insurance company will stop introducing us to our important customer. Therefore, we regard non-life insurance companies as partners and strive to build good relationships with them.
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