Podcast #65

“Company Aquisition”

Featuring Ben Stark

Intro: Welcome to Profiles In Prosperity. The leading podcast for residential service contractors, sponsored by Service Roundtable and hosted by David Heimer.

David Heimer: Hi Everybody, this is David Heimer welcome to Profiles In Prosperity. Today we’re speaking with Ben Stark. Ben is an overly modest guy, so he’s probably going to deny this, but I think he’s one of the smartest guys in our industry. I interviewed him before for this podcast and we talked about his technician retention plans. And at that time I noted that Ben had built and sold two HVAC companies. Well, he did it again and now he’s built and sold three HVAC companies. So we’re going to talk to him about that. I personally have made it a practice to pay a lot of attention anytime Ben Stark tells me something about the industry. He is an astute observer of the industry. He has great ideas. He’s an innovator and he’s built great companies. He’s a very impressive guy and on a personal basis, he’s kind, he’s thoughtful, he’s helpful, he’s just a super nice guy. So, Ben Stark, welcome back to Profiles In Prosperity.

Ben Stark: Thank you David, I enjoy being here.

David Heimer: You’ve now built and sold three HVAC companies. That’s an amazing record. I’d like to learn from that experience. And I know our listeners would like to learn from it as well. So if you could. Could you set the stage for us just a bit and give us the rough start and sold dates for your businesses?

Ben Stark: I started my first company in late 85, early 86. And I grew that company kind of had a big challenge in the first four years. And that company started off as Stark Heating and Air and it kind of evolved to Air Experts by 1990 and we grew that until 1997. That was the selling point of when we sold that company. A very successful young company, good, strong, ambitious employees. I thought it was very successful at the time and that’s kind of the history of that. A lot of learning, a lot of figuring out my way, and how to build a company in that first timeframe in 1997.