What exactly happened on December 2, 2013?
We changed Standard Parking of Canada’s name to SP Plus Corporation Canada.
Why did you change the Company name?
Because we have grown into more than just a parking company. Certainly we’re still one of the largest providers of parking management services in Canada through our Standard Parking of Canada brand, but we also provide ground transportation, facility maintenance, security and event logistics services as well. Given the expanding breadth of our service lines, it became important for us to have a name that doesn’t give the impression we’re just a parking company.
Does the name change affect my contract with you?
Not at all. All we did was change our name, much like changing a phone number.
Why did you pick SP+ as your new name?
For several reasons. We actually introduced our SP Plus brand in 2009 as our non-parking service lines started growing. So the name SP Plus has been around for years and people within those service areas are already familiar with the brand. In addition, in light of the October 2012 merger between our U.S. parent company and Central Parking, we wanted a new, bold logo to recognize the merger’s transformational significance for our future.
In terms of the new logo itself:
- The “SP” is in recognition of Standard Parking
- The gold colour of our “ +” symbol acknowledges Central Parking’s legacy gold symbol
- The “ +” itself signifies the added value we bring to our clients as a single-source provider for many of their needs
Tell me more about what the “+” means.
It signifies the various, cumulative ways we bring value to our clients and customers. For example:
- It reflects our ability to be a single-source provider of any one of the five distinct service lines we offer, whether it’s parking, ground transportation, facility maintenance, security or event logistics.
- It also symbolizes the fact that we have experts in eight different, dedicated operating group that each focus exclusively on a single market in the real estate industry, whether it’s airports, hotels, healthcare, residential, university and the like.
- Our Commitment Statement, Innovation In Operation, signifies our promise to our clients and each other to constantly challenge ourselves to improve our services, products and processes, using our tools and cultural values to do so. Those tools and values are reflected by our “ + words”: innovation + integrity + excellence + creativity + initiative + experience + knowledge + technology + efficiency + expertise.
The + signifies the value we bring by offering all of these things together.
What are some examples of your Company’s innovations?
One great example is the musical-theme floor reminder system we developed in the 1980s, which linked a song to a specific level within a parking facility to help folks remember where they parked. In fact, the system was so innovative that in 1987 we were awarded a U.S. Patent on it.
We also introduced Ambiance In Parking in the early 1990s. Ambiance In Parking was an overall method for the delivery of parking services that bundled a variety of parking facility characteristics, such as:
- bright lighting
- fresh paint
- immaculate cleanliness
- complimentary driver services
- clutter-free cashier booths
- professionally uniformed and groomed employees
- well-designed and easy-to-follow garage signage
- small touches of home such as flowers at the front desk or in valet waiting areas
Ambiance In Parking may not have been as dramatic as the patented musical floor reminder system, but its innovative impact was just as great. In fact, because our competitors started copying it, it had the effect of raising the stature of the entire parking industry.
More recent examples of our innovative tendencies are our development of Internet-based, consumer-facing initiatives to market our parking facilities. We developed city-centric websites that list all of our parking facilities in a city to make it easy for consumers to find a convenient place to park. For consumers on the go, we developed a mobile app that enables them to do the same thing. These were innovative approaches that changed how our parking facilities are marketed and how our customers find them.
These are just a few examples of the innovative penchant that’s in our DNA.
I notice you’re still operating many of your garages under your Standard Parking of Canada brand. Why?
We didn’t want to cause confusion by making an immediate switch to an unfamiliar brand because our clients and consumers had known us for years as Standard Parking of Canada. We now have started the process of converting our garage operations to our new SP+ Parking brand. The conversion will take place gradually but we expect it to be substantially completed by the end of 2015.
Is your branding change going to cost me money?
No. We’ll pay for any branded items we purchase simply because we changed our brand and which we otherwise wouldn’t have had to buy in the ordinary course of business. An example would be the replacement of a branded illuminated sign panel. That expense will be on us.
Clients will only pay for ordinary course of business items that would have been purchased even if we hadn’t changed our brand. An example would be uniform items that would have been replaced anyway as part of the regular replacement cycle.
I’m not familiar with your new Event Logistics service line. What is that?
It’s a service that coordinates and oversees an extensive range of transportation-related aspects typically associated with large special events or operations at large event venues. Simply stated, our SP+ GAMEDAY operating group manages the flow of people to places. As an example, our GAMEDAY team played a pivotal role in planning all aspects of transportation for the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games, from the buses that transported athletes and spectators to the event venues, to the roadway plan for routing and parking all passenger vehicles, to pedestrian transportation planning and crowd control, to coordination of concession and other vendor vehicles and personnel. We also coordinate similar transportation and crowd control aspects at events held year round at large event venues.
How can I learn more about your other services?
You’ll find information about all of our service lines and operating groups on our website, www.spplus.ca.