The Roots of the MacIver Family Business: Doug MacIver Sr.

Brothers Of Bargains, Doug MacIver Sr., Family Business, Ride Time, Used Car Dealer

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At Ride Time, you’d be hard-pressed not to know about the Brothers of Bargains who keep the business running.

While Andrew and Doug run the show now, everything they do stems from the passion and wisdom of the man who got them started. So who was their father, Doug MacIver Sr.?

A Winnipeg Native Son

“My dad grew up in Winnipeg,” Doug Jr. says. “As a little kid, he idealized the local sports teams – the Winnipeg Blue Bombers football team being one of them.”

Douglas Gordon MacIver Sr. had a drive for football, and combining his intelligence, work ethic, and competitive spirit, he became a standout nose tackle.

“He was a hometown guy,” Andrew says. “He was a larger than life individual, who his teammates and fans would recognize because he had a massive head.”

In fact, at University there wasn’t a helmet big enough for Doug’s head, and one had to be special ordered.

He played 9 years professionally in the Canadian Football League as a nose tackle. In the last 3 years, he was able to return to Winnipeg and the team he’d loved growing up.

He even won a Grey Cup with the team before retiring.

Off the Field and Onto the Lots

“Throughout his career he would work at my grandfather’s Chrysler dealership,” Doug says. “He eventually left football to nosedive into the car business fulltime.”

Andrew said that he dedicated himself to the car business as completely as he had to football, and his prominence from games helped at the dealership.

“He was a recognizable figure in the community while playing football and that translated into his post-career working at my grandfather’s Chrysler dealer,” says Andrew.

Built for Success

In 1991, Doug had an opportunity to buy a failing Chrysler store in Toronto. At the time it was ranked 30th in the city. In a couple years, their father had turned it into the number one store in Canada.

“He could relate to anybody,” Doug Jr. says. “My dad’s probably greatest quality, and it was evident until he ended up passing, was he could make an absolute stranger feel like his long-lost best friend and also make them feel like a beauty queen – no matter who they were.”

He simply knew how to connect with people in a way that very few individuals can. That ability to relate is vital to the car business.

“When you combine that with the fierce competitive spirit that he had from sports, you have a lethal weapon for success,” Doug Jr. says. “He really liked winning, but he also treated everyone with complete respect.”

Handing Over the Torch

While Doug Jr. wasn’t as interested in cars growing up, Andrew always knew he wanted to head into the business along with his dad. But when Andrew left University, all of his father’s and grandfather’s stores had been sold.

It was then that Doug MacIver Sr. and his son started Canada Wide Vehicle Finance, which became Ride Time. In a few years, Doug Jr. returned to join the company.

Douglas Gordon MacIver Sr.“I ended up coming back from playing hockey,” Doug Jr. says. “It ended up working out because that gave me one year of working with my dad.”

On January 26, 2012, Douglas Gordon MacIver Sr. passed away.

“There was like 900 people at his funeral and there were 2000 people that viewed it online,” his sons say. He was loved by his teammates, fans, employees, and customers – but most of all by the sons who carried on his values and virtues in the car business.

A Family Business to the Core

A lot of companies say they’re family-owned. After all, businesses have owners, and a lot of them probably have families. At Ride Time, it goes a little further.

Andrew and Doug have the pleasure of not only working side-by-side, but also working with their mother, Doug’s wife, Aunt Kim, and Uncle Dave.

“Inside of our store we have our extended family that works here,” Andrew says. “I think that just lends itself to having that family feel and trying to match people’s needs with the right vehicle.”

Brotherly Love

Doug says there are a lot of advantages to working with his brother.

“You have someone that has your back or someone that you know will be there regardless,” he says.

Plus, they aren’t afraid to get passionate with each other. The Brothers of Bargains say it isn’t rare for them to get into yelling matches, but they’re always quick to forgive.

“With another employee, you can’t really have those blowups even though you may want to. With family you basically just tell it like it is,” Doug says.

Families Need Cars

There’s a slew of reasons people need to drive, the brothers say. But one of the most important is family.

“They need to get their family from point A to point B, and get mom to work and dad to work and Johnny to football or Johnny to hockey,” says Andrew. “People need cars to get places and it’s because of family that people need a lot of transportation.”

At Ride Time, the Brothers of Bargains understand that, and they’ll do whatever they can to swing you a deal that works from their family to yours.

Image Source: Winnipeg Free Press


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