Mike Braun is a successful entrepreneur with more than twenty years of experience in the construction industry. Mike started his first construction-related business while still in high school, and his passion for the industry has grown since. His first exposure to the exterior remodeling business was during the summer between high school and college when he worked for a local roofing contractor as a sales representative in Nebraska. Mike continued to work for this contractor throughout and immediately after college before deciding to pursue a more entrepreneurial environment. He joined a regional renovation and storm repair company as a sales representative in Columbus, Ohio. Mike received several promotions in rapid succession – ultimately to Regional General Manager where he oversaw nine locations around the country.
In March 2006 at age 24, Mike formed his own exterior remodeling firm, 123 Exteriors Inc., serving the Chicagoland area. While Mike’s entrepreneurial mindset may have started him down the path of owning his own company it was his firm belief in customer service, adherence to sound business practices, and vision to provide unique customer solutions, that were the ultimate catalyst to his founding of 123. In an industry of fly by night, in business one year out the next, and sometimes flat out dishonest competitors Mike knew there had to be a better way.
123 Exteriors started in a 900 square foot office with one Production Manager and one Sales Representative. Through relentless effort and a unique business approach, the new venture generated $1.3 million in revenue in its first year. In January 2007, Mike opened a second location in Columbus Ohio. Over the years 123 has achieved its success by constantly working to be a beacon of professionalism in the exterior insurance restoration industry. The company now operates permanent locations in 6 states and averages $10+ million in annual revenue. As a result of Mike’s leadership and determination, the company has been listed in Inc. Magazine’s annual 5000 Fastest Growing Privately Held Companies in the United States four times. In 2020, Mike sold 123 Exteriors to Fred Grove, a long-time employee and the company’s COO since 2016. Mike is excited to see where the new ownership will take 123 Exteriors in the years to come while he focuses his efforts on continuing to build on the solid foundation of Elite Claim Solutions.
In 2018 Mike founded Elite Claim Solutions (ECS) with help of another long-time 123 Exteriors team member. After a pilot test with a number of contractors around the country in 2018, Mike and the team learned ways to refine the company’s processes and deliver elite service and elite results. ECS fully launched in 2019 and began building what is today one of the top supplementing firms in the industry. With over $100 million in claim volume processed, Elite is already following in 123 Exteriors’ footsteps by expanding the team and rapidly growing throughout the country.
Mike is a tough but fair leader who always strives for what is best for his companies, his team members, and his customers. He pushes himself to grow and learn each day and in turn pushes his people to be their best. Mike’s former and current team members describe him as a unique and candid leader who provides direction and high standards while allowing them the freedom to learn, grow, and forge their own path to success.
Today Mike’s decisions and ambitions are driven by his ultimate goal; to change the exterior insurance restoration industry from the inside out. Allow good contractors to rise to the top while pushing those who game the system out.
On this episode, we talk about how private equity companies value roofing companies and how you can build to sell your business.
Check out the Pitch Pro Movement: https://www.pitchpromovement.com/jim
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