Some say Marc Collins is Ocean Cadillac. As general manager, his loyalty – and longevity – at this landmark auto business in Bay Harbor Islands has quite literally allowed him to become the face of the dealership.
And after all these years, Collins is still here managing the dealership much in the same way it always has been run – as a neighborhood fixture in a well-to-do community. Collins loves representing Cadillac, since the early 80s. He is truly devoted to his quality product.
“Simply stated, I have a passion for Ocean Cadillac.”
Although there is new ownership, “I want everyone to know I am still here. In fact, we’re running Ocean Cadillac much in the same way it has always been run – as an extension of the Bal Harbor Shops.” Ocean Cadillac was a family business for 33 years before Brickell Motors purchased the dealership in 2014.
In the car business since 1976, Collins’ father was a dealer in his hometown of Philadelphia. “Every Saturday after bowling, I spent the day at the dealership with my dad. So I guess you could say, cars have been in my blood since I was born in 1957.” Not coincidentally, also a classic year for cars.
Even as general manager of the operation, he still gets to do what he loves every day – working face-to-face with the customers. And everybody knows him.
“We are in a very very wealthy neighborhood. But we don’t charge expensive prices because, well, we just don’t need to,” citing the dealership’s low overhead due to its small size and a lack of a mortgage. “It is a very simple situation,” he adds.
“More than anything, it happens to be a really nice place to do business,” he says, which has a lot to do why the customers keep coming back, year after year. “We’ve built up a rapport with the community, to the point where they bring in their families.”
Even with the new owners – Mario Murgado, Alex Andreus, and Rick Barraza – the family appeal of Ocean Cadillac is alive and well. Says Collins, “These guys have all known each other in the car business for decades. In fact, I gave two of them their first management jobs in the business back in 1984.”
Ocean Cadillac also is a nice place to work, considering so much of its staff has been along for the ride here for many years – in some cases, many decades.
“You just don’t find that in our business,” says Collins. “Imagine the same guy working the service desk, the same tire changer, the same familiar faces on the showroom floor for 20 and 30 years.”
What’s this say about Ocean Cadillac? It says the dealership is run properly. “We take care of our customers and our employees the proper way – with honesty and respect.” Something Collins says if far from the perceived norm in this business.
“So many car dealers are seen as shifty and underhanded, I admit it. But there is none of that here.” The proof is in the numbers. Ocean Cadillac’s customer satisfaction index is through the roof.
Ocean Cadillac also keeps its competitive advantage by offering such features as at-home test-drives and at-home delivery or to the customer’s office. “Customers love this prime service we offer.”
One other outstanding benefit of dealing with Ocean Cadillac is when customers come in for service and need a loaner, they get to use a brand new Cadillac, every time.
While so many of its core qualities may never change, the customer profile of Ocean Cadillac is shifting to a younger and more family-oriented base.
“Who would have ever thought we would be selling trucks in a Cadillac dealership in Bal Harbor,” Collins quips. “And yet, we are now one of the biggest SUV sellers in the area.”
Furthermore, Cadillac is on the forefront of changing the product line. About 10 to 15 years ago, Ocean Cadillac was selling about 40 Deville’s per month. Now, they only sell one equivalent product, the XTS, per month.
“The SUVs and smaller SUVs seem to be the hot product these days for everybody – single, married, kids, no kids – that’s that they want.”
In addition, most of their deals nowadays are done over the internet.”Younger people don’t want to come to a dealership anymore. If they select a car over the internet, they don’t want to have to come in to the showroom at all.”
“If you are going to be competitive with all the top end cars out there in today’s market, you better be good,” he continued. “And with the amazing assistance of my entire management team, Ocean Cadillac is dedicated to being very good, thanks to New Car Sales Manager Jonathan Shvartsman, Used Car Manager Peter Valdez, Business Manager Javier Reyes, Service Director Joe Bardill, and Parts Manager Rick Rivero.”
Ocean Cadillac is located at 1000 Kane Concourse, Miami Beach, FL. Visit oceancadillac.com or call 305-864-2271.