In Saint Ouen, the first garage for women
Only Girls Auto is for women who hate trips to the mechanic. But now, car repair is a chance to relax for women, to enjoy the beauty salon and to pop the kids in a playroom.
France is home to 68000 car repair and vehicle sale businesses. With 7000 jobs created between 2008 and 2011 (ANFA Observatoire), the car maintenance sector is on the rise, and there is now a strong focus on customer relations. Unfortunately women don’t always feel welcome in this very masculine environment.
Having opened in 2014, Only Girls Auto offers something unique in France: a garage designed for women, with complementary services to increase appeal. This 650m2 garage, located in Saint Ouen on the outskirts of Paris was founded by Laïd Hdach. Two female mechanics work on-site, fixing cars and getting their hands dirty. Four rooms have been created: Only Food, Only Web, Only Kids and Only You. While their car’s being checked out, customers can have coffee, a patisserie, check their emails, play with their children or get a manicure.
By focusing on advice and being transparent, this new type of garage appeals to women who are afraid of being ripped off by traditional garages. The decor is generally colourful, feminine and sophisticated, a major change from the masculine, technical world usually found in garages.
Only Girls Auto has more than 500 likes on Facebook. It has a Pinterest and YouTube account, and as a feminine and connected image. Special offers, new deals and other offers are a regular site and can be accessed via the internet and social media. This marketing tactic has caused a stir in the traditional press: local newspapers like La Gazette du Val-d’Oise, nationals like Le Point, L’Express and Le Figaro, television channels (France 3, M6), foreign newspapers (The Telegraph, Huffington Post, China Post), and blogs (French in particular) have all taken an interest in the phenomenon.
The special offers at affordable prices have girls’ names, like Mélina at €69 or Angélique at €79. Only Girls has attracted a lot of women who are no longer afraid of taking their car to the garage.
10, rue Paul Painlevé
ZI du Vert Galant
St Ouen l’Aumône
Tel : 01 34 48 75 37