Worcester, MAINDUSTRY: MANUFACTURING
BUSINESS: READY 2 RUN GRAPHICS AND FLAGS
YEAR FOUNDED: 2011
PROGRAM: 2016 VETRN
“My passion is creating jobs and opportunities -- building a team that enjoys coming to work and that I enjoy being around.”BUSINESS OVERVIEW
Ready 2 Run Graphics & Signs specializes in custom signs, vehicle wraps, vinyl graphics, and digital signage for business and government clients. Although most of its clients are in Massachusetts, recently Ready 2 Run was selected for a project in Wichita, Kansas--a project business owner David Winchester sees “as a great opportunity to begin our growth into the national market.” Ready 2 Run set itself apart from its competition when it became the first and only 3M Certified Graphics Installation Company in Central Massachusetts: “This certification demonstrates our dedication to quality and professionalism. We always look for ways to separate ourselves from our competition.” Today, the business operates with the support of six employees, who have enabled the company to achieve second-stage growth. Company revenue is now ten times its earnings from just three years ago.
MANAGING CASH FLOW
David Winchester joined Ready 2 Run a couple of years after his brother Daniel started the business out of his basement. Leading a team was something that came easily to David, who had just retired from service after 22 years in the Navy. However, running the business turned out to be more of a challenge than he’d anticipated. Cash flow in particular was a constant struggle, especially for a fast-growing business.
In his initial stage of business growth, David found it frustrating when his clients paid weeks after he sent invoices. David, on the other hand, paid his vendors within days of receiving an invoice. This created a problem with cash flow. Then he took VETRN’s StreetWise ‘MBA’ program, a six-month program set up to provide veteran small business owners with the tools they need to achieve second stage growth.
Interactions with his instructor and other small business owners during the program helped David balance his accounts: “I realized I have the power to slow down how fast I pay people--instead of paying a bill when it first comes in, I can pay it only when it’s due to try and maximize cash flow.” Before, David had felt the need to reign in business growth for fear that his accounts would collapse. Now, Ready 2 Run is taking on more contracts than ever: “We established net 60 terms last year and have gotten bigger contracts as a result.”
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