Garage Republic Pte Ltd
Address: 25 Kaki Bukit Road 4
#03-94 Synergy @ KB
Contact: +65 6702 3887
Turning passion into a business, one car at a time
Locals don’t usually spend much time in the Kaki Bukit district, one of Singapore’s industrial heartlands. Those who do, however, will probably be familiar with the many automotive repair workshops along its roads. Of these, a young company called Garage Republic stands out amongst the rest, with a remarkable 4.9 star rating out of 5 on its Facebook page.
According to Garage Republic boss Mr Dexter Leow, what makes his workshop stand out from the pack is its focus on providing honest and personal service. Being willing to work hard, put in the hours, and keep improving are other key factors that his customers appreciate, as automotive repair is by no means an easy trade to be in. Much of his business are referrals from satisfied customers.
Garage Republic was started back in November 2014. Having drawn a humble salary for more than 10 years in the automotive industry, Mr Leow felt that he was ready to start out alone. It had always been his dream to run his own business, and it just so happened that he had the opportunity to pursue his passion at the same time.
Mr Leow believes that passion is a must for any successful business. He has had a keen interest in the automotive industry for a while now – he started tinkering with cars during his army days, and he’s never looked back since. Even now, he spends a good 10 hours a day working away in his workshop – customers tend to come in at odd hours – and even works on Saturdays.
It hasn’t always been smooth-sailing. Starting out, Mr Leow had to seek advice from other experienced people in the industry when it came to certain technical problems. Today, he runs two storefronts, and is a respected figure in the business, with many people coming to him instead for advice and support in running their own automotive workshops. This is especially so since he is a wellspring of knowledge on certain “niche” car models.
Eventually, Mr Leow hopes to be able to share his expertise with a younger generation of automotive entrepreneurs, setting them up for success. He doesn’t need to get credit for it either – he’s very happy to support them from the shadows. His advice to them is to “be daring, be conscientious, and just do it.”
At the moment, Mr Leow’s greatest satisfaction lies in helping his employees become very skilled. For him, the greatest mark of success is when his employees leave and open their own businesses as well.