The Iowa Small Business Development Center at the University of Iowa helped Brian Meyer with business valuation/pricing, financial projections and financial statements so he could purchase an existing SERVPRO® franchise.
Brian Meyer grew up in Wayland, Iowa and graduated from Iowa State University in 1999 with a degree in marketing and a minor in finance. His first job was in investment banking; eventually he went to work for an independent restoration business. With both sets of experience he decided that he would like to own his own restoration business.
In 2009 Brian found out that the local SERVPRO® franchise was up for sale. Since he had been working for several years for an independent restoration company, Brian was interested in buying a major franchise rather than an independent company. This was because of the agreements larger franchises have with insurance companies—over half of the major franchise’s business is a result of these insurance relationships. To maintain these agreements as an independent company, Brian would have to do background checks on new employees and carry liability insurance. Additionally, major franchisers do national advertising to maintain brand awareness, which helps out the local franchisees.
Brian sought out the help of the Iowa Small Business Development Center at the University of Iowa (SBDC). Regional Director Paul Heath helped Brian determine what he could afford to pay for the business. In addition, he put together financial projections including an income statement, cash flow projection, and balance sheet.
With this financial information, Brian was able to obtain a commercial bank loan to purchase the SERVPRO® franchise in the Iowa City/Coralville area. After he bought the business Brian compared the projections to reality and found that the projections developed were over 75% accurate, which he thought was very good.
Brian was very grateful for the assistance he received from the Iowa Small Business Development Center, saying, “The SBDC was helpful with developing financial projections. I needed to know how much I could afford to pay for the business.”
Brian’s franchise is one of over 1,650 SERVPRO® franchises across the country. After two years of ownership, Brian’s franchise was recognized as one of the top 100 franchises system-wide. The company has grown from four employees when he bought the company to a total of 36 full-time and part-time employees today. Brian had four trucks to start with; currently the company has 25 trucks. The company originally had one office in Iowa City and has since added two other offices—in Ottumwa and Oskaloosa. The territory his company covers includes Des Moines, Newton, Grinnell, Iowa City, North Liberty, Williamsburg, Washington, and the surrounding areas clear south to the Missouri border—basically the Southeast quadrant of Iowa.
SERVPRO® of Iowa City/Coralville/Ottumwa is a company that provides damage restoration services. The company is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is ready to restore a residential or commercial structure due to damage caused by water, fire, natural disasters such as storms and flooding, mold, vandalism, or a crime. The company’s staff is highly trained and certified in lead remediation and hold a number of other certifications including:
• AMRT – Applied Microbial Remediation Technician
• ASD – Applied Structural Drying Technician
• CCT – Carpet Cleaning Technician
• MTC – Master Textile Cleaner
• OCT – Odor Control Technician
• OSHA – 10-hour General and/or Construction Industry Training Program
• OSHA – 30-hour General and/or Construction Industry Training Program
• SRT – Fire & Smoke Damage Restoration Technician
• UFT – Upholstery & Fabric Cleaning Technician
• WRT – Water Damage Restoration Technician
In addition, SERVPRO® is involved with its communities and has affiliations with the following organizations:
Better Business Bureau
Cedar Rapids Claims Association
HBA (Home Builders Association)
IICRC Certified Firm (The Institute of Inspections, Cleaning and Restoration)
Iowa City Area Association of Realtors
Iowa City Area Chamber of Commerce Ambassador Committee
Iowa City Chamber of Commerce
Iowa City/Coralville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau
Ruhl & Ruhl Realty Preferred Member Vendor
Southeast Iowa Claims Association
Ottumwa Chamber of Commerce