I believe in the entrepreneurial spirit of this country. It has energized me to be more business-minded and a contributing member of society. I grew up in the Midwest and moved around a lot in my early years. Having to make new friends all the time led me to seek acceptance through peer pressure. At an early age I started doing things I knew were wrong, but I just wanted to fit in. I continued to make poor decisions throughout my life. The consequences for my actions ultimately earned me five years in the Texas Department of Corrections.
While in prison I was introduced to the Prison Entrepreneur Program (PEP). Getting into PEP was the beginning of my transformation. It taught me about integrity, accountability, love, and most of all, to believe in myself. Equipped with this mindset and new capabilities, I was released in 2007.
I got a job after my first week and have been gainfully employed ever since. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit, but I knew that if I was to become a business owner and future employer, I first had to become a good employee, father, son, and productive member of society. That became my focus. I worked hard to clean up the wreckage from my past. As a result of my dedication and perseverance, today I am an entrepreneur.
Since winning my first Kiva loan, I’ve been able to buy a second vehicle for the business, grow my client base, meet financial commitments, develop a goal -setting mind set, and plan the next phase of my company’s growth. My dream for the future is to continue supporting my son, enjoying family, and participating in the community. I love being a part of PEP. Not only has it given me purpose, it has also given me a platform to share my story of hope, and motivating others like me.
This loan is special because:
More about this loan
We are a preferred partner in Dallas/ Ft.Worth for global transportation firms. We offer “five-star” ground transportation – a chauffeur with concierge-style service- to executive travelers. This includes: “automated travel scheduling, email/ text alerts, payment processing, as well as creating a taylor madeclient profile of preferences. For the discerning corporate traveler, large car services and ride share apps, like Uber and Lyft are impersonal and lacking in consistent, trusted, professional service. Unresolved travel challenges and uncomfortable situations are commonplace. We seek to meet these high expectations and build our corporate partnerships.
I started my business in January 2014. I was working as a driver for another company but became dissatisfied with their business practices. We soon parted ways and this prompted me to start my own business. With some initial investment and a desire to chart my own course, I knew this was the perfect opportunity.
My goal was to be my own boss and control my own destiny. I also wanted to help my son follow his dreams of going to college. I knew with hard work and dedication this could all be possible. Since then, I’ve added a second vehicle and hired contractor drivers. There have been some challenges which have helped me learn and grow into a better entrepreneur. Business is going well. However, I’d like to go from just being self-employed to growing the business in a more strategic way. There’s a lot of demand for executive chauffeur services, especially with all the corporate growth going on here in North Texas. I plan to take advantage of this opportunity.
I am proud of becoming an entrepreneur because it has helped me be more of a provider and giver, not only for my family, but my community as well. It brings me great joy to be a part of something much greater than business and the bottom line. I’ve been able to create my own opportunities and help others do the same.
What is the purpose of this loan?
A Kiva loan helps me with building a foundation to grow my business and gather additional corporate clients. I am currently operating under another company’s authority. This loan will help me to secure my own transportation authority ($1,000). I also want to incorporate my business ($500). Also my own authority license will allow me to get my own (million dollar) umbrella insurance policy (Initial payment ($2,000, monthly $800). Incorporating, getting my own authority, and insurance will free me up and allow me to market larger corporate clients as well as national booking agents. With this marketing opportunity, I want to change my company’s name to CorpCar. I’ll need to upgrade my website, branding, and social media ($2,000). I also need industry specific software for payment processing, reservations, and driver status alerts. (Cost $300, plus $200 monthly). The additional $4,000 will be used for operating expenses including: hiring employees, accountant & lawyer support, targeted advertising, marketing, advisement fees, etc. I believe that building this foundation will help legitimize CorpCar’s presence and competitiveness in the Dallas/ Ft.Worth transportation market as we win new corporate partners.
With this new business foundation, our revenue and profit will be impacted by allowing us jump from 1 client (current capacity) to up to 5 major partner clients. We’ll go from $150K revenue per year to $250K within 12 months and $1M in 5 years. These include contracts with field based operations, Fortune 500 corporate accounts, and professional booking agent companies.
This loan allows me to work on my business and not just in it. I’ll go from just being an “entrepreneur” to a business owner creating jobs and building sustainable revenue and passive income. Also, I’ll be able to continue my community impact and charitable initiatives through funding worthy causes (i.e. PEP) and providing training to future chauffeur employees/partners of CorpCar.
Years in operation: 1 year – 3 years