Sign of the times Featured

1:10pm EDT June 22, 2004
The entrepreneurial spirit has been alive in Tim Eippert since he was 8 years old and running a lemonade stand with his cousin.

Moving to bigger projects, such as mowing lawns and plowing snow while in junior high, and buying, fixing and renting houses during high school, helped him develop his sales and people skills.

At age 24, he bought MC Sign, a two-person sign service and neon company in the Ashtabula area that was doing annual sales of less than $100,000. Nearly a decade later, at year-end 2003, MC Sign exceeded $25 million in annual sales, a feat Eippert says he accomplished by "putting a good team of people around me ... people who are smarter, brighter and more knowledgeable in areas than I am.

"We've got an awesome group of talent that is very knowledgeable in their key areas of the business, and we quite frankly just let them run that area of business," Eippert says. "We provide the vision, the support and the strategy, and let them handle the tactical vision of their area."

The sign business is a "pretty easy product to build," he says, but the hard part is putting the quality service around the product. Eippert and his team name better communication and project management services as a priority and work diligently to make MC Sign a one-stop shop where customers know their sign project will be handled by a competent team.

This, he says, is imperative for MC Sign's national accounts, where consistency creates a successful image and brand.

Eippert says the company expects continued growth of 20 percent annually and yearly sales of $35 million to $40 million in the next five years. How to reach: MC Sign Co., (440) 953-2280 or www.mcsign.com