Superior Paint & Body Service has a long history as one of Calgary’s oldest and most trusted collision repair facilities in Calgary. Our company founder Mr. Allen Viner was born the son of Romanian immigrants who had the daring to leave their European war-torn homeland to seek out a better life in Canada in the early 1900’s.
They took up residence in Winyard Saskatchewan and purchased a hardware store where their son, young Al Viner worked. But his heart was not in the hardware industry – Al ‘s passion was for cars… a passion that led him to working on the mechanics of cars in the back yard. With the help of a local, small town garage owner Al quickly not only grasped the repair concepts of motor mechanics, but also body repairs.
A position at Landa Autobody in Saskatoon gave him an opportunity to hone his skills and expand his knowledge. With the goal of being a business owner Al saved his money and was able to hop a train and come West to Calgary, where he opened his own auto sales & service shop in 1939.
Within 6 years of opening his doors Al found that his small shop could not handle the volume of his business without working into the wee hours of the morning most days of the week. And Al needed more space. At the end of 1946, Al incorporated his body shop and moved into 101-17th Ave S.W – a location that to this day is still owned and operated by the Viner family, and operates as Superior’s sister company Economy Glass.
Over the next several years, Al discovered that providing his customers with superior service & quality repairs caused his business to continue to grow, and found that again he had outgrown his shop space. So in 1953 he purchased a parcel of land across the street from his current location and built a “state of the art” facility, the most modern in Calgary, which included roof top and basement level parkades, as well as the most up to date equipment in the industry. He also installed the only private infra-red paint baking tunnel in Canada . The only others in the country were in the manufacturing plants of the major auto manufacturers. Al also had something new and unique installed into his shop – air makeup units, a system to clean and recirculate the air. Fairly common today, it was almost unheard of back then. But he felt it was his duty to create the most efficient and safe working environment he was able.
Over the next 2 decades Al Viner not only continued to increase the volume of his business, but also continues to modernize his body shop procedures. He strongly believed in learning new things; his motto was “if you don’t grow, you will soon go”. The success of Al’s motto has kept Superior Paint & Body Service an industry leader for generations.
Sadly Al became ill and passed away in 1989, leaving us with the story of what hard work, passion and progressive thinking can achieve. Shortly after Al Viner’s passing his son Ian Viner, who had established and was operating Economy Glass just across the street from Superior, took over the operations of Superior Paint & Body Service.
Ian Viner, like his father, is focused on customer service, often giving his customers not only Superior quality repairs and service, but also his personal phone number, so he can be reached in the event that there is anything a customer may want to talk to him about.
Ian learned from his father the value of progressive thinking. He felt that Superior Paint & Body Service could be instrumental in spearheading positive action against the impact the collision repair industry has on the environment. He enlisted the help of BASF and with their help developed Superior’s exclusive “True Colors™” environmentally friendly paint system. When manufacturing technology caught up to his ideas, he installed 3 state of the art water-based paint down draft booths. Today the entire industry is trying to follow suit to adopt the more eco-friendly water-borne technology.
Superior Paint & Body Service has not been adversely effected by the shortage of skilled autobody repair specialists that seems to plague many shops in today’s collision repair industry. This is in part due to their reputation in the industry, Ian’s strong belief that his staff are an extension of his family, and in part Ian takes great care to hire and keep the best people in the industry. His goal is to culture and inspire his staff to mentor SAIT students, volunteer time as speakers in industry classes and encourage individuals who have potential for growing and improving the collision repair industry.
If you drop in on Ian Viner today and strike up conversation about his staff, you can bet that he would state something along the line of, “We’re all in this together, to do the best we can for our customer, to create something we can all be proud of.”
We hope you will find your experience with us an extension of the customer focused business that Ian and his father before him have been operating in Calgary for more than 70 years. Feel welcome, and feel confident that you are in the care of one of Calgary’s leading and most trusted collision repair facilities!