Starting a new business is an exciting adventure. More than eight months into their careers as business owners, brothers Brandon Bjerke and Blake Bjerke have enjoyed every second of their new venture.
“It’s gone ever better than we expected,” Blake told the Tribune. His older sibling agreed adding, “We couldn’t ask for more. It’s been going really well.”
The Mayville residents opened the doors of Bjerke Brothers Body Shop in June 2017. The business is located on Highway 200 at the former Braaten Body Shop building. Randy Braaten, owner of Braaten Body Shop, has stayed on to assist with the transition. “It’s helped a lot. Randy has been great to work with,” Brandon said.
In many ways, opening a local body shop has been a dream come true for the local brothers. Growing up, they worked on different projects at home. While the Bjerkes didn’t have specific plans for a business, the idea was always in the back of their minds.
“We’ve always been pretty mechanical,” Blake said. Brandon pointed out, “I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do and halfway through college this opportunity arose and it all just worked out. I’m glad it did.”
From an early age, Brandon was interested in running his own business. The 2013 May-Port CG and 2017 Mayville State University graduate noted that his Business Administration degree and internship with Alton Grain Terminal business office prepared him for his current role.
“I knew business was the path I wanted to take, I just wasn’t sure what I wanted to do,” he acknowledged. “So far, the business side of things has been pretty smooth. College and my internship really helped get me ready for everything.”
Blake, a 2016 May-Port CG graduate, has been pleased with the venture. It’s been a great opportunity, he said “I think my favorite part is that we are our own bosses,” he pointed out.
The shop, which works on insurance claims, performs vehicle body, paint and glass work. So far, the brothers have also completed a number of restorations. “It’s been fun,” Brandon said.
The community support for the local business has been overwhelming, the Mayville residents pointed.
“Everybody has been awesome to us so far. We can’t thank everyone in the community enough for their support,” Blake said.
One of the highlights of the business venture is in the name itself “It’s been going well working together as brothers. We have been doing these type of projects our whole life,” Brandon said. “I think it helps working with someone you know so well.”
Thanks to the Traill County Tribune for the use of this article which is from the February 17, 2018 issue by Harry Lipsiea.