Where: 99 - 105 Torrens Road Brompton
When: Monday – Friday, 8:30AM to 5:00PM
For more info, call:
Tel: 8340 9300
At wholesale prices we can sell you your next car with one on one service.
As featured in The Advertiser - Wednesday, August 29, 2007
THREE decades in any business is a rarity but the de Pinto family has recently passed the significant milestone. The family behind Universal Motor Auctions at Brompton is celebrating 30 years in the business. Co-founder Mario de Pinto started the company with then-partner Bruce Wood in August, 1977, and he looks back with pride at what they started.
“Bruce Wood and I were in Waymouth Street for 20 years until Bruce’s retirement in 1997. After his retirement the dePinto family transferred the business to Torrens Road, Brompton in the demand for larger premises,” he says.
Mr de Pinto is leaving the day-to-day running of the business to his two sons Philip and Peter.
The 61-year-old "grand-daddy of motor auctions" has been in the automotive auction trade since 1970 and has seen the highs and lows.
“I started in 1970 at Mid-City Motor Auctions before Bruce and I started up. “I’ve been through the petrol rises and the V8s, all of a sudden petrol went up 10c and people sold their eight and six cylinders for four cylinders but came back a month later with the smaller car because they couldn’t fi t their family in," he says.
Business colleague and friend Tony Sewell, dealer principal of AA Family Motors in Gepps Cross, paid tribute to Mario de Pinto.
“I’ve known Mario since before he got into the auction side, he was a motor painter, but he really wanted to get into motor auctions which was his real passion," he says.
Mr Sewell said Mario was a natural at auctions and learnt from the king of auctioneers, Don Nicholls. “The business has a very, very good name, they’re more selective in terms of the cars they put through there, I’ve dealt with them throughout the 30 years and we’ve become fi rm friends."
Mr Sewell believes the business will continue to do well because he’s taught his sons the right way. “He will leave the industry with the best wishes of the industry, but I don’t think he’ll let go of the reins entirely," he quipped.
Mr de Pinto, a former painter and panel beater, describes his 30-year journey as a good experience. “We’re known to the trade and we sell throughout Australia - people know us and trust us," he says.
Mr de Pinto spends more time on his Hills property than at the auction house now and is happy for the business to be grown by his two sons.
“I’d like to thank all the clients who have stuck with us, I’m appreciative of their support over the years and I’m certain that it will continue," he says.
The reins of Universal Motor Auctions are being handed over to the co-founder’s two sons, Phillip and Peter de Pinto. The pair both joined their father in the family business as teenagers straight from school and believe they have benefi ted greatly from his leadership. “We’ve been taught by the best, that’s the only reason we’re capable of taking it over," Peter says.
“We’ve been under his wing for a long time and because of this we are now confident that we can take the business to the next level," he said. Brother Phillip agrees: “The way that Dad taught us was do it right the first time - there are good and bad times, you deal with it. If people keep coming back, that must tell you something," he says.
The brothers, both aged in their early 30s, are aiming to develop the family business and build on their father’s strong foundations, with client satisfaction being our focus for the future.
“The business is where it is because of the team; with our consignment manager Michael Hanlon, our buyer and valuer Wayne Wyld, offi ce ladies Angie de Pinto and Sandy Scapinello and not forgetting our detailers Alan Claridge and David Kennedy - it’s a great team here," Phillip and Peter say.