Bill Wild and Scrap Busters Celebrating 25 Years in Business!
Scrap Busters, located at 39165 Maple Ave. in Wayne, Michigan, was launched in March 1988 and recently celebrated its 25th anniversary!
Current owner Bill Wild’s road to business success and the Westland City Hall began some nine years earlier, when, at the age of 10, he started sweeping floors at the auto salvage business launched by his father and grandfather in the 1970s. Bill worked at the family business throughout his youth, even serving as a truck driver while he was in college. His father sold the site in the ’80s when he bought a larger salvage yard in Taylor, but the new owner couldn’t make a go of it. The business then reverted back to Bill’s father, who shut it down and put it up for sale.
After graduating from John Glenn High School in Westland, Bill began studying business at the University of Michigan – Dearborn, while continuing to work part time for his father. At Bill’s suggestion, his father agreed to reopen the original site in 1988 and allow him (then only 19 years old) to manage it. Bill reopened the business as “Scrap Busters” — named, believe it or not, after the popular “Ghostbusters” movies of the era.
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With financial backing from his father, Bill built the business from scratch into a multi-million-dollar recycling facility. At its peak, the full-service company dismantled 2,000 vehicles per year. Scrap Busters serviced the auto insurance and repair industries, while implementing the latest technology in inventory and warehousing. It also marketed quality recycled auto parts worldwide via the Internet.
In 1997, the family expanded Scrap Busters by buying an additional five acres and adding both a new sales office and dismantling building. Bill became the sole owner in 2001, when he purchased the business from his father.
Because of increased competition in the marketplace, Bill changed the format of the business to its current model of self-serve, U-pull-it automotive recycling. Under this format, all environmental hazards are removed from all cars and trucks upon their arrival. The vehicles, now safe for recycling, are then brought to the U-pull-it area. Cars are placed safely on secure stands by make, and customers are allowed to pull their own parts.
When Bill became the full-time mayor of Westland in 2007, he placed an experienced management team, which currently includes his wife, Sherri, to oversee the expanding seven-day-a-week operation of U-pull-it used auto parts.
Sales have grown steadily and Scrap Busters has proven to be a profitable venture, now processing approximately 4,000 cars annually. Bill is very proud of the business and takes great satisfaction in knowing he is helping his customers hold on to cars longer, which is especially important during tough economic times. “Many people are working very hard just to make ends meet,” says Bill, “and they are looking for low-cost options for car repairs. That’s where Scrap Busters comes in. By purchasing used auto parts from Scrap Busters, our customers save up to 75 percent on the cost of replacement parts.”
Besides building a strong reputation for supporting the local community and servicing a generation of auto enthusiasts, Scrap Busters had been featured in national publications as one of America’s premier U-pull-it auto recyclers.
Scrap Busters now has 10 employees and is a Certified Green Auto Recycler through the Automotive Recyclers of Michigan (ARM), a non-profit trade association founded in 1972. At one point, Bill was the youngest president in ARM’s history.
As Westland’s current mayor, Bill has initiated economic growth, new jobs, community health programs and fiscal responsibility within the city. Mayor Wild will be running for Wayne County Executive next summer, looking to take his leadership skills and the knowledge he has gained from Scrap Busters, the Westland City Council, fellow business owners and, most importantly, the residents of Westland, and apply these principals to bring about similar fiscal reform and economic growth and development — along with his unique sensibility — to the citizens of Wayne County.
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