From preparing a Datsun Sunny to being the GM of Sales ANZ at one of Australia’s leading aftermarket companies, Shane Jeffreys has had quite the journey.
The Disc Brakes Australia General Manager of Sales ANZ was drawn to the automotive industry after helping a mate prepare a car to compete in club level motorsport. It was during this activity that Shane Jeffreys discovered the camaraderie amongst car people. “I’ve always been drawn to the automotive industry for several reasons. But I would have to say the number one reason is the people,” Shane explains.
Shane had been tinkering with mechanical machines long before helping his mate to build his race car engine. He grew up in country New South Wales on the mid-north coast where he loved the rural lifestyle, which included mucking around with motorbikes on his Dad’s acreage. “For 10 years I worked outside the automotive industry when a good friend of mine was building an engine for his Datsun Sunny to take part in NSW Improved Performance Racing Association (IPRA) racing,” Shane said. “Many evenings and weekends were spent preparing this vehicle and I was just helping where I could. When the season started, I recall being at the track when one of the competitors suffered a mechanical failure and everyone pitched in to get him back on the track for the race.” His mate’s Datsun was not the first time he had experienced the iconic Japanese model either – his first car was also a Sunny. “It was a 1979 Datsun Sunny; I swear I washed the red off that car literally. I still recall getting my license and heading for the beach as a young guy, with no air conditioning and wound down windows – it was the perfect introduction to motoring,” he says.
Shane gained his work ethic at a young age while helping out in his father’s business. “I was still at school. I was working with my father in a kitchen business. During school holidays and weekends I would deliver kitchens to job sites. I remember the ridiculously long hours I worked back then. When we were busy it was nothing to do 16-plus hours a day,” he says. Shane moved to Sydney when he was 17 and soon found a job which took in his passion in the automotive industry. “After moving to Sydney when I was 17, I bounced around a few jobs before I found a job with a
Bridgestone Tyre dealer in Waitara (Jobsons Tyre and Mechanical),” Shane reflects. “Originally I was hired as tyre fitter, fitting tyres and doing wheel alignments. I was soon given additional responsibilities, which involved me filling in and running other stores in the network when managers where away.” A career move to GUD Automotive (RYCO filters) in 2010 was the impetus to take his career to the next level.
“GUD Automotive is an amazing place to work under some passionate and knowledgeable leaders and alongside some of the best people in the industry,” Shane explains. “I have had and continue to have the opportunity to learn from amazing people in the automotive industry.” He believes it was his “hard work and determination” that has been the keys to his career success. “Starting out as a young guy for me it was all about work ethic; working harder than the others; putting my hand up for additional work (on the weekends) and when I was asked to deliver a result, I made sure I exceeded that expected result,” Shane says. “Work ethic and attitude are attributes that can’t be learnt, you either have them or you don’t. Growing up as a kid my father and grandfather were great role models of this. “Without a doubt, attitude is what drives you. It is what motivates you when things do not work out the way you want them to. “Skills can be taught and practiced to perfection, but attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.”
Shane is proud of his status as a family man. “I am blessed to have a very understanding wife that allows me to travel when needed for my work or for a weekend at Bathurst!” he grinned. “My Wife Nicole and I have two boys, Corbin (six-years-old) and Logan (three-years-old) and number three is due to join us in December. “We love spending time with family and friends when we are able, and we also enjoy getting away and exploring with the kids. “As my boys are getting older I would love to spend more time at the race track or a car show on a weekend with them sharing my passion for all things cars. “Over the years my hobbies have changed with the arrival of my two boys. During our current state of restrictions, simulator racing has been a great way to relax and unwind or taking the radio-controlled cars to the local park with my boys for hours of entertainment. “I still enjoy getting out on my mountain bike for a ride through the national parks; however, not as much as I would like.”
Shane believes DBA is well positioned to continue its strong growth both domestically and internationally. “We are experts in stopping things, so nothing is stopping us from applying our expertise to a whole range of products and industries,” Shane says. Nationally Disc Brakes Australia services all major trade suppliers, stocking DBA product in their stores, delivering orders directly to stores, and via their online offshoots, while braking specialist workshops nationwide also play a major role in the distribution of DBA product. Shane says the business strategies that set DBA apart from its opposition are its technological innovations and patents which have been developed for over 40 years, including Kangaroo Paw ventilation, T2 and T3 slot designs, Thermal Graphic Heat Paint stripes, high carbon materials and DBA’s two-piece rotors, to name a few. He states that continuing to grow Australian manufacturing capabilities when many competitors only import product from overseas was a key decision in defining DBA’s principles and its growing braking expertise, making the company what it is today.
Shane sees other competitive advantages of the business as providing distinct “Good, Better, Best” product tiers that cater to each section of the market. “We offer a braking solution to everyone. The Street Series offers superior quality over OE for the standard consumer. Then when you look at the performance end of the rotor range, we have the ideal choice for both 4×4 and performance vehicles in our one and two-piece rotor technology,” Shane explains. Shane is conscious that customer communication and education are DBA’s main challenges for the future. “We need to be aware of other brands who claim to be offering similar products or braking expertise, but they don’t have Australian R&D or manufacturing capabilities like us,” he said. “We really utilise our own learnings to help educate our customers on braking developments, supporting their needs, and offering the leading range in Australia. “Disc Brakes Australia was the first to take replacement rotors to the Australian aftermarket and has been the industry leader since day one. “I am determined to play my role in ensuring that the company stays at the top, both locally and internationally.”