Brothers rev up online sales

Focus on Yahama products pays off

By Entrepreneurship Expert Roger Pierce (

Brothers Stephen and Larry Kelly grew up riding motorcycles. They’ve turned that boyhood passion into a growing business selling parts and accessories for Yahama motorcycles, ATVs, snowmobiles and generators.

The duo own Kellys Cycle Centre Ltd., a heaven for Yahama enthusiasts located at 1042 Upper Wellington Street in Hamilton, Ontario. Their dealership opened in 2000 and last year expanded into the World Wide Web with a site called Yamaha Genuine Parts (

“Our customers are blue-blooded Yamaha owners looking to make the most of their leisure time,” comments Larry. “We carry a full line of Yahama parts and accessories in our store which is kind of unusual for a dealership.”

Their extensive Yahama inventory helps to create amazing customer loyalty. “If someone is looking for genuine Yamaha mud guards or a genuine Yamaha sled windshield, we have it,” says Stephen.

The website was a unique business move because many retailers want to keep people coming into their store. “Our online store actually creates more retail store traffic because people want to come and see us,” says Larry. “The website really complements our existing business.”

With the marketing tagline, “We Eat, Sleep and Breathe Yamaha!” the entrepreneurs have truly immersed themselves in the Yahama culture. “We made a conscious decision to wrap ourselves in the company flag to become the go-to place for Yamaha products,” explains Stephen.

As a result, the brothers enjoy a strong relationship with Yamaha Canada which benefits their customers with unparalleled product assortment and availability.

“It really pays to pick a defined niche and run with it,” says Larry. “We’re known for our Yahama expertise and customers have responded to that.”

The brothers see their new e-store as their gateway to the world. “Our dream is to build our website into a premium global web store,” enthuses Stephen. “Yahama is a globally recognized brand and we see demand for parts and accessories around the world.”


Where ideas are born

Ever wonder where entrepreneurs get their business ideas? Here are the Top Five origins of an idea:

Added a new twist. It’s okay to copy or modify an existing business idea. In fact, that’s how most entrepreneurs start. Be critical of existing companies and look for things they could be doing better, faster or differently.

  • Personal use. Perhaps you made something for your own use that holds business potential. Pay attention to people who say, “Could you make one of those for me?”
  • Hobby business. Your hobby could lead to a great new business because you’re passionate about it. Spend hours in th
    e garden? Making your own jewellery? Explore making your hobby a full time labour of love.
  • “Eureka” moment. Some brilliant business ideas literally wake you up in the middle of the night. Keep paper and a pen on your night stand just in case it happens to you.
  • Conducted research. Practical entrepreneurs won’t wait for that wake up call, choosing instead to roll up their sleeves and hunt for a viable business idea. Read business magazines, research emerging trends, surf the Internet, travel the world and talk to everybody. You can dig up some amazing opportunities if you’re willing to look for them.

Entrepreneurship Expert Roger Pierce advises startups at


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