Staten Island’s De Ville Auto Collision is New York’s Family-owned Business of the Year
Elm Park-based business has been in the family since 1964; Federal officials present owner with honors
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) New York District Office was on Staten Island to recognize David Fazio, owner of De Ville Auto Collision, as the Jeffrey Butland Family-owned Business of the Year for 2019. SBA New York District Director Beth Goldberg toured Fazio’s 10,000 square-foot facility and learned how the company leveraged $1.4 million in SBA-backed financing to purchase the building after renting its space for 30 years.
“Having come from a family of entrepreneurs myself, I know how hard it can be to keep a family-owned business running,” Goldberg said. “What the Fazio family has done is truly amazing to grow and expand and buy a building after more-than 50 years in business. It’s a tremendous accomplishment and we’re honored to celebrate De Ville Auto Collision as SBA’s 2019 Family-owned Small Business of the Year.”
Fazio’s parents, Charles and late wife Joan, started De Ville Auto Collision in 1964 in Brooklyn. The company expanded to Staten Island in 1981 to its current location under the Bayonne Bridge. David joined in 1990, and then in 1996 the family closed the Brooklyn location to focus exclusively on serving their Staten Island customers.
Fazio said that it’s hard to pinpoint exactly why the business has been a success, but did attribute some of it to the innovative methods and dedication of his staff.
“We combine the highest ethical standard with excellent auto-body technicians and sophisticated leading technology,” he said. “It takes the guesswork out of the repairs so we can meet and even exceed the customers’ expectations”
De Ville Auto Collision currently employs six (6) people at two locations on Staten Island, including a satellite office on the South Shore. Charles still works at the business, helping out with the supervision of the shop while David’s wife, Tina, runs the office.
SBA’s Goldberg said that to win the Family-owned Small Business of the Year Award, a company must have been in business at least 15 years and have been passed down from one generation to the next.
Fazio said that the Small Business Development Center at the College (SBDC) of Staten Island, a Resource Partner of the SBA, has been instrumental in helping him grow his company. Starting in 2009, Fazio met visited the SBDC to talk about different options for buying his building. The idea didn’t leave, but was put on hold until 2015 when he again met with the SBDC and got a little bit closer to making an offer on his building. Then, in 2017, the price was right and Fazio wanted to buy, but the bank asked for $400,000 down – or about 30 percent – which would have greatly restricted the business’s liquidity and so was not an option. SBDC business adviser Ed Piszko told Fazio about SBA’s 504 loan program and the possibility of buying the building for only 10 percent down. Not only would the 504 loan require less of an equity injection at the beginning, but using the 504 loan would allow Fazio to amortize taxes and fees that he would have had to pay up front going a traditional lending route. This, in addition to the lower down payment saved him thousands of dollars.
The rest, they say is history. Fazio closed his loan in the fall of 2018, and the company now owns the 10,000 square foot facility in which it used to be a tenant.
“I am delighted that David Fazio won this award. I have known David for many years through his extensive outreach in the community and the South Shore Rotary Club. This award is well deserved and truly supports and substantiates David and his family’s work in the community,” quoted Staten Island SBDC Director Dean L. Balsamini.
Goldberg added that on May 7th, SBA will celebrate Fazio and all of SBA’s 2019 National Small Business Week Award Winners at Microsoft’s headquarters in Times Square.
“Small businesses give back to their communities in job creation and economic vitality. National Small Business Week is an opportunity to recognize the achievements and dedication of these entrepreneurs. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating Fazio and all of our winners,” Goldberg said.