Every day, our military works to protect the American dream, and when they return home, the U.S. Small Business Administration works to help some veterans live that dream by starting a small business. This creates jobs for other Americans, and at times other veterans, and this is exactly what happened when Michael Niall left the Army and started My Mobile Mechanic, an auto repair company.
My Mobile Mechanic sends one of two mechanics to a home or other location to fix brakes, check exhausts and mufflers, change engines, complete a tune-up, or provide other services including diagnosing check engine light complaints and other electronics problems. Their mobility makes the company a convenient choice, and their client list is continuing to grow.
Before Mr. Niall started his company, he worked at Tri-State Truck Center in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts as a mechanic, and also served as a mechanic in the Army when he started there in 1997.
Mr. Niall started his business in January 2007 with a borrowed truck and a toolbox. In 2009 the business was struggling when Mr. Niall met Jerry Pinsky and became a member of the Veteran Business Owners Association. Through education, coaching and peer support provided by the VBOA, the business took off and Mr. Niall learned about the services offered by the SBA. With a combination of what he learned through the VBOA and excellent counseling from the SBA , Mr. Niall was able to secure a Patriot Express loan for $80,000 from First Trade Union Bank in September 2012. “With a small business loan, I was able to purchase two new vehicles and hire a mechanic and administrative assistant,” said Mr. Niall. He added, “It would have been impossible to grow my business without the SBA.” Today, he manages two employees and his earned revenue in 2012 was $120,000.
Mr. Niall’s success in the transition from soldier to business owner led him to work with and later serve as the president of the Veteran’s Business Owners Association. There, he works to help other veterans start their own small businesses.
Looking ahead, Mr. Niall sees a bright horizon, and is planning to hire more mechanics as his business continues to take off.