Business partners Ethan Young and Mike Hubbs have collaborated to create Exclusive Industries, LLC, aka EI, for short. They have combined their collective years of experience as couriers and truck drivers, their business savvy and immersion in technology to create a business model that has proven to be a great seed to growing a strong business.
EI was formed two years ago when Mike and Ethan decided to branch out from their jobs as truck drivers to owning their own trucking company. With years of industry experience under their belts, great customer relations and even a great relationship with their employers, creating their own company was a natural progression.
It’s clear that the duo are natural born entrepreneurs simply by measuring the amount of growth they have attained in such a short time. The sum of street smarts, book smarts, technology and business acumen is central to how their blueprint has come to fruition. And they are still building.
PBI: How did you guys meet?
ETHAN: We used to work for a courier service called 24-7 back in ’06 or ‘07. With them we did runs for clients like Interscope Records, Universal Studios, pretty much the whole entertainment business. A friend ours broke off from 24-7 and started his own trucking company, Trinity 3. Mike started working for T3 as a driver and I eventually came on board there as well. We both worked there for a couple of years and actually learned a lot as far account management, customer relations, routing and logistics… definitely a different vantage point from a straight courier service job. During this time we started to discuss what it would be like to run our own business, what we could do differently, how we could incorporate technology into our game, etc. We eventually decided the time was right and decided to start Exclusive Industries.
PBI:I have to say, for two years on the books, your company’s growth is pretty amazing. I see you guys have a pretty formidable fleet, if you will. How did you get your start with your vehicles?
MIKE: We bought one cargo van initially. We pooled our finances and went to the auto auction for the vehicle we’d use to start our company. All while still working for two different companies. We ran our business around our work schedules.
PBI:How did you manage deliveries while still working?
ETHAN: It took a minute to find our rhythm. The van initially sat for a month. We found a start-up company called Cargomatic that we partnered with to get our initial jobs. We were able hire a part-time driver initially. That was the start to us establishing our brand and reputation. for other trucking companies..
Figure 1- Ethan pictured with Cargomatic president Brett Parker
PBI:So what was Cargomatic’s role in all of this?
MIKE: Cargomatic is a tech company whose product is a trucking and delivery app and website that allows their clients with shipping needs to acquire trucking services by posting their delivery jobs on th Cargomatic site. Independent drivers or companies like ours register with Cargomatic and can compete to accept and fulfill the posted jobs. That was the way we were able to land some initial business while we held down our own 9-5 jobs as drivers at other companies.
ETHAN: Cargomatic was a great match for us because our goal was always to use technology to enhance our business presence and service level. Their web-based platform played into our business model. A fledgling company like Exclusive Industries could land a good amount of business and build a solid foundation AND reputation. Cargomatic’s system allowed for ordering, hiring, tracking, and all aspects of trucking to be automated and online. Additionally, we were able to cultivate a relationship with Cargomatic’s owners and front office and we negotiated other opportunities that became available. We acquired several route opportunities through Cargomatic that allowed us to grow at a fast rate.
PBI: So the planets basically aligned for you guys with Cargomatic, huh?
ETHAN: Definitely. With that growth we were able to establish ourselves as a tech-based company in our own right. We’ve been able to land AND MAINTAIN several contracts and build out our number of vehicles and drivers. We offer them electronic PODs, tracking deliveries live online, and receive electronic updates. Every nuance of the process is at our clients’ fingertips.
MIKE: We now have six vehicles and are looking to add two more any day now. We also broker deals for vehicles through our partnerships with other independent contractors. That puts us in a position where NO JOB is too big for us to take on.
PBI: So what’s the future hold for Exclusive Industries?
ETHAN: The plan we have for the company over the next year is to continue to expand. One thing we want to grow into is drop shipping. That entails acquiring a warehouse to store our clients’ inventories, fulfill orders for our clients, and facilitate shipping or local delivery.
MIKE: And an underlying goal is to reinvest in our community. There’s always a need for Black businesses in the Black community. We need the infrastructure in the Black community; grocery stores, gas stations, warehouses… more of that.
PBI: Well said. Well, the future sure seems bright for you guys with your business heads and the growth you’ve seen so far. I’m looking forward to big things from Exclusive Industries.
Don’t be surprised to see Exclusive Industries delivery drones in the future but, for now, the ground game is strong in these guys.