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Business Modern life: Phone, device repair industry grows

Modern life: Phone, device repair industry grows

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The name says it all – uBreakiFix.

Franchise owner Steven Demetriou III believes his stores are more than another place to have a broken phone fixed.

“We fix anything with a power button, literally. Our ‘bread and butter’ is phone, tablet, computer and game console repair, but if it turns on we will try and fix it,” Demetriou said. “We offer free diagnostics for all of our customers, so we don’t charge a fee to tell our customers what’s wrong with their device. We also offer repair options for businesses.”

What the company is doing seem to be working as uBreakiFix opened its third area location in September at 5000 S. Hulen St., Suite 128. It joins stores in Flower Mound and Lake Worth.

The Hulen store is Demetriou’s second location as he owns the one in Flower Mound as well, and he has plans to own as many as 10 by 2020. He said he would also like to expand across the United States.

To date, uBreakiFix has completed almost 5 million repairs nationwide. While common fixes include cracked screens, software issues and camera issues, the brand offers support for most technical problems on any electronic device, regardless of make or model.

Through strategic partnerships with leading technology companies, including Samsung and Google, uBreakiFix provides Samsung Galaxy customers and Google Pixel and Pixelbook customers with manufacturer-backed, same-day repair services using genuine parts. Through the partnership with Samsung, Galaxy owners can get in-warranty and out-of-warranty repairs at more than 300 locations nationwide, with most repairs completed in two hours or less.

“First and foremost, the brand promotes quality, integrity and customer service. Those are values that really speak to me,” Demetriou said. “From the corporate leadership to the store level, customers are placed first.

“I also believe that the electronics repair industry will continue to grow, as it allows the consumer more options when it comes to their devices, and uBreakiFix is our industry’s leader and will continue to expand in that role moving forward.”

Demetriou, 30 years old and a Dallas resident, also invests in and manages commercial and residential real estate. Before joining uBreakiFix, he graduated from West Point and served for five years as an infantry officer in the Army.

However, he developed a personal affinity for Fort Worth.

“I love Fort Worth because of its vibrant culture, rapid development and robust business community,” he said. “In today’s day and age, it is important that businesses and consumers alike have access to reliable, high-quality tech repair. As we expand to Hulen Street, we look forward to serving new customers and creating value for our existing customers who may have previously been commuting to Flower Mound or Lake Worth for our services. As we continue to grow throughout the area, we hope to become the go-to resource for all of Dallas-Fort Worth’s tech repair needs.”

And in a time when devices can easily cost over $1,000, the demand for repairing them grows each day. According to a research report from IBIS, the revenue from the cell phone repair industry is estimated at $4 billion annually, with an average of 3 percent or higher annual growth.

“Consumers need and want choices. We provide them with a range of them. Instead of replacing an expensive device entirely, we can offer our customers same-day, well-priced, high-quality repairs. We save our customers time, money and stress,” Demetriou said. “Customers come to uBreakiFix stores to get their devices repaired because we put them first from the moment they walk through our doors. They appreciate our bright, clean and modern stores, as well as our friendly technicians.

“We explain our pricing and procedures transparently, and we deliver great services at reasonable prices, usually less than replacement cost.”

Customers also have access to a wide array of accessories to help protect their devices after a repair. The stores also sell protective accessories that can help lessen or negate the cost of their next repair.

The company was founded in 2009 by millennial duo Justin Wetherill and David Reiff, who later partnered with Eddie Trujillo to transition their internet-based brand to a brick- and-mortar model. In 2018, Wetherill was inducted into the Forbes Technology Council, and uBreakiFix earned a top spot on Entrepreneur’s Franchise 500 list, ranking 18th overall, first in the electronics repair category, and first on the Top New Franchises list.

It now has more than 425 locations across the United States and Canada. The brand opened 59 new stores during the first half of 2018 and plans to grow throughout the rest of the year. According to the company’s website, individuals will need about $150,000 to start a franchise, though the total cost of each store varies by size and location.

“At uBreakiFix, our goal is to take the hassle of a broken device and create the most positive, convenient experience possible for our customers,” Wetherill said. “We are a customer service company first, and a tech repair company second.”

“We look forward to serving the Fort Worth community as we open at our Hulen location, and as we open more locations nearby in the near future,” Demetriou said. “We are a new brand to DFW, but consumers will see our brand grow rapidly over the next two to three years with stores opening in nearly every sub-market across the Metroplex.”

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