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Supplier Spotlight 7973

November 1, 2007

3 Min Read
Supplier Spotlight

Entrepreneurs never stop dreaming up ways to make things easier and faster for American consumers, who can never seem to get enough of easy and fast. Thats just what Bill Norris thought when he founded Go Minis, a portable-storage company headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., five years ago.

Norris had been through the self-storage experience himself a number of times. On each occasion, he found it time-consuming and cumbersome to fill out the contract, rent a truck, load and unload. How could this rigmarole be simplified? Easy: with portable rentals brought right to the customer.

No truck required. No running around. Just keep it simple and make it cost less. Make the portable units easy to maneuver and the trucks that transport them fully hydraulic. Package it all together into a dealership and let other entrepreneurs get in on the act. And there you have it: Go-Minis in a nutshell.

All the Right Stuff

Go-Minis has been going strong ever since its inception, foraging into new territories with an ever-expanding dealership list. The voracity of distribution has been enough to draw the attentions of Inc. Magazine, which named Go-Minis No. 39 on its list of the fastest-growing private companies in 2007 (see sidebar).

Were very pleased were growing so quickly, admits Dom Annunziata, director of sales. We hit 214 territories in five years, but probably 80 to 100 of those dealerships sold within the last two years.

Reasons for enthusiasm in the company are many, says Annunziata. First are the containers themselves, which are steel-frame welded construction with galvanized steel sides, designed to endure 15 to 20 years of use. The containers are supplied to dealers from manufacturers in Jacksonville (Fla.) and Phoenix, who make them exclusively for us.

Next are Go Minis transport trucks, which feature a fully hydraulic rollback transport vehicle with a bed to match the units specifications. A company-manufactured trailer may also be purchased for transporting two containers at once.

Finally, the best part about joining the Go-Minis family is ownership. The company offers dealerships not franchises, explains Annunziata. The main difference between us and a franchise is that people who purchase from us are true entrepreneurs. People who purchase a franchise end up working for the franchise, which charges royalty fees, controls and restricts quotas, and places numerous other demands on the franchisee. With Go Minis, theres no royalty feezero. You are the owner. You set your budgets. You take the phone calls. All profits belong to the dealer.

In the Act

Self-storage operators looking to grow their businesswith at least a half-acre, fenced-in property, or a warehouse with 20,000 square feetcan transition into a Go Minis dealership relatively easily, assuming a territory is available, says Annunziata. Territories are defined by county lines or ZIP codes, and usually encompass a metro area with a population of more than 400,000.

Businesses with land to expand should plan to spend $250,000 to get up and running, he adds. Those starting from scratch should anticipate expenditures of $350,000 to start, with an additional $150,000 for first-year growth.

Finally, theres company training, with a two-day extensive program offered to all new dealers needing to learn the ropes. I think this is one of the greatest things about our company, concludes Annunziata. We also have conferences every year and probably 90 to 95 percent of dealers always show up. These folks are not in competition with each other, and are always helping others out. Its really a great family atmosphere.

For more information on Go Mini's, call 866.466.4647; e-mail [email protected]; visit www.gominis.com.  

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