The next time you pass a road crew or highway construction site in Colorado, it may be monitored and equipped by employees of Advanced Traffic Services. Started in 2012 by Duran Hill, this fast-growing company specializes in road closures, detours and other related services needed to insure highway and street projects get done safely and efficiently.
The increased demand for barricade services, says Duran, is one of the reasons he started his own business along with his ability to do the job of “five guys.” This was pointed out to him while working as a traffic control supervisor on a large Denver Water project. Someone told him he was “so good” at prioritizing and managing the work load that he should start his own company. So he did and hasn’t looked back since.
To finance his new business, Duran visited his credit union to refinance his vehicle. When he asked about getting a business loan, he learned they didn’t fund start-ups and was referred to Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) where he received loans in 2013, 2014, and 2016. This helped Duran purchase the vehicle, barricades, cones, signage and equipment he initially needed to grow his traffic service business which has now expanded to Los Angeles and Atlanta. He also took advantage of CEF’s Business Acceleration Services (BAS) to fine tune his accounting practices and cash projections.
The impact of getting a loan from CEF was life-changing. “After beginning my first contract, ATS went on to earn $120,000 in 2013, with sales topping $560,000 in 2014, and growing to $1,100,000 in 2015,” remarked Duran. “We’re on pace to double it again in 2016 with sales of over $1,000,000 to date mid-year.”
Duran’s business has grown in employees as well, starting with 2 in 2013 to 20 in 2016. “With the assistance of CEF, ATS has grown exponentially,” Duran confirmed. “The funds that CEF provided allowed ATS to purchase equipment we would have otherwise rented or leased, and allowed us to hire at a decent salary those employees we needed to accept additional state contracts.”
As to why he feels CEF is an asset to the state, Duran had this to say. “For individuals like myself with no option to get lending at other institutions because of previous business failures, CEF was the right partner at the right time. I am always the first to tell others who are seeking to start a business to check out the Colorado Enterprise Fund.”