A Chat With February’s Profile, Mike Stopka, President/Owner of Design Toscano
CS: What was your biggest initial challenge breaking into the catalog business?
MS: Money. I started the business with $6,000 and grew it up to $30 million. In the beginning I had no cash. Literally. I used the credit from the vendors for advertising. When I got to printing, using the printer’s credit to grow the business. Till the point that we got large enough that we could start bringing traditional bank financing in. The bank’s not going to give you a $2 million line [of credit] until you’re making some money and have some assets. The most difficult thing was getting the capital. Literally when I started the business I started with zero. And ran the business for years with zero.