The son of a humble hawker, Farouk had start-up capital of just R300, borrowed from his dad, when he launched Speedy Den back in 1974. He bought two sets of mag wheels, sold them at a profit, and ploughed the money back into the business to buy more stock. The young 19-year-old soon expanded into other accessories and the used car dealers in Klerksdorp began sending their cars to the young Farouk to dress their cars up to gain a competitive advantage.
“Those first two sets of mags were Tiger wheels,” says Farouk, “with an aluminium centre bolted to a steel rim, and you had to protect the tubes from getting cut by the bolts, by fitting a gaiter, made from an old cut-up tube.
“After a while people asked me why I didn’t sell cars myself, and so I set up in premises registered in a white guy’s name, because in those days Indians weren’t allowed to trade in the area. The first two years were very tough, there were no Indian dealers in the trade and we couldn’t get banks to finance the deals. Then two years later, after the banks realised I was going to take a share of the market, they came to the party.”
Since those make-or-break days, Speedy Car Sales in Anderson Street, Klerksdorp, has consistently won the Absa Golden Dealer award for the past 22 years, and Farouk Dangor has been named Klerksdorp’s Businessman of the Year. His name in the trade is known right across the country, and Speedy has its own car transporter to deliver cars anywhere in South Africa.
Married to Shameema, he has five children, Bilal (30), Shavira (28), Zeenat (25), Mohammed (24) and Tasneem (18). And while he describes Shameema as “totally supportive”, the rest of his family are car-mad. Mohammed, particularly, is very keen to follow his father’s example of tacking to the race-tracks – Farouk was a highly successful racing driver in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s – and he says his youngest daughter has already decided what colour Golf GTI she wants when she gets her licence…
Farouk has owned a number of exotic cars himself, and his favourites are the Nissan Skyline GTR R34, his current R35 GTR, and his all-time favourite, a Ferrari 458 Italia. He also still owns his classic Touring Car-spec BMW M3, which is currently undergoing restoration.