Lloyd Riley, founder of Advanced Machine & Tool, is one of those classic entrepreneurs who literally started his business in his garage.
"I was working at a local shop doing repairs so I knew how to make a lot of these parts," he said. "I decided I didn’t want to be doing repair work so I started my business doing mold building and slowly started getting into extrusion tooling for PVC pipe and it grew from there."
Riley grew Advanced Machine & Tool from a one-man shop to a 65-employee manufacturing company that makes and refurbishes components for gas turbines and generators.
"We do most of our business with power generation companies like Siemens and we also do Disney's critical class 1 ride components," he explained. "What sets us apart is the size of our equipment and our quality program. Our equipment is larger and built for doing larger components. Along with the ISO quality program and the coordinated measuring machines, when we send a part to a plant, it fits."
Riley's advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is that you must have perseverance. "Just don't give up on yourself," he said. "There's tough times and ups and downs and there always will be. Even when it gets bigger, you've built this monster and then you have to feed it."