Alumni Spotlight – CarAudioCare, Inc. (NC18-EMBC)

CarAudioCare, Inc. is one of the leading repair service centers in Southern California since 2007. Founder Robert Cruz has led this venture from the bottom up by investing in quality customer service that cannot be topped. More and more customers choose to go to CarAudioCare rather than their automobile dealer because of Robert’s more affordable prices. Not only is CarAudioCare more affordable, but they also bring you the best service that is on par with dealerships, if not better. Robert’s attention to detail has allowed for his business to boom. Robert won first place at the Spring 2018 North County Elevate My Business Challenge, where now he will be able to take that momentum and newfound knowledge and begin scaling his business.

Robert founded CarAudioCare after he was laid-off about twelve years ago to be his own boss and completely avoid the same situation from happening again.  With his brother as his first entrepreneurial mentor and influence, Robert gained the confidence to open his own business in Southern California to provide quality service, which was lacking in the market at that time.  Being able to offer top-of-the-line customer service and high quality repairs have been the company’s mission, and has made CarAudioCare stand out from its competitors.

How to Work ON the Business, Rather than IN it

The biggest obstacle for Robert when establishing CarAudioCare was trying to grow on his own. To overcome the adversity of being a solopreneur, Robert took charge of doing extensive research and learning from experienced entrepreneurs to implement their advice to grow and scale his business.  A key reason why Robert decided to participate in the Elevate My Business Challenge was because he thought it would push him in the right direction of growing and working ON his business, rather than simply IN it. The Challenge offered a new mindset of how to scale up and implement tactics that will lead to business growth. Trying to do everything by yourself can be very stressful, so that’s why Robert has hired those who may have more expertise, such as a professional, certified bookkeeper who will keep CarAudioCare’s finances in order.

Taking the Right Steps to Scale a Business

In the next 3 to 5 years, CarAudioCare’s main focus will be to have a minimum of 5 locations with many more technicians and administrative staff. Robert wants to first expand throughout Southern California and then eventually open locations in nearby states. It is important to not try to grow to quickly or you can crash and burn. Patience is the key when growing and trying to go region by region. Prior to the participating in the Challenge, Robert had some knowledge about business, but his eyes have now been opened to growth strategies such as lowering the cost of goods, increasing number of customers, and selling more to your current clientele.  After winning first place for the Challenge Pitch Day, Robert is starting to see more changes to his business. He has expanded his team to add a part-time technician who will be transitioning to full-time soon. Robert believes that his revenue growth this year will be up 15% compared to last year, as he begins applying what he learned in the program. Robert wants to use more of his cash flow to invest back into his business in order to see bigger growth. Robert’s advice for other small business owners who want to grow would be the following:

“You have to know your industry, and if you don’t know, seek experts or mentors who do.”

– Robert Cruz

Robert stated that he has been operating his business for 11 years and has talked to many people who have offered advice and tried to help him grow, but no one has compared to Kim Folsom, founder of LIFT Development Enterprises, and their team of subject matter experts that have deep experience supporting companies like his.  The Challenge helps small businesses by guiding them with implementing innovative methods to reach the next level. LIFT Development Enterprises team is extremely proud of Robert and his commitment and actions taken to grow his business exponentially. If you want to learn more about CarAudioCare, check out their website at