Having filmed their own skate, surf, and snowboard movies for years, Matt D’Amico and Jeff Barrett acquired a taste for digital videography. When Matt and Jeff launched Valley Home Movies, they combined their passion for video editing with their knowledge of antiquated and modern video formats. Using high-capacity computers, they transfer every frame from aging formats such as 8mm and VHS onto reliable DVDs and convert old photos and slides to digital files, ensuring prom pictures may be ridiculed by future generations.
The pair also puts their editing skills to good use, laying down beats for accompanying DVD soundtracks and crafting individualized DVD menus. Videography services and sound engineering round out the company’s offerings, though the staff also shoots still photography, repairs computers, and develops websites.
uBreakiFix CEO Justin Wetherill spoke with Groupon about the importance of protecting your smartphone and the challenges of fixing a phone that has been dropped into a deep fryer.
On the worst thing you can do after cracking your smartphone’s glass screen
“Don’t just put it into your pocket and continue to use it,” Wetherill says. The broken glass can actually cause serious damage to the phone’s inner components and turn a relatively simple fix into a costly repair job.
On the repair process
"Look, this is something we do every day," Wetherill says. "You are not the first person to break a phone.” Collectively, uBreakiFix's highly trained technicians repair more than 20,000 devices a month, drawing from a library of high-quality parts that are tested twice before they ever get used in a repair service. Free diagnostics are a staple at all uBreakiFix locations, so customers understand the problem before any work is done.
On growing his business
uBreakiFix began as a business based out of Wetherill’s living room, and it now boasts more than 60 locations nationwide. “We are proof that the American dream is alive,” he says.
On unusual repair jobs
Wetherill remembers one fast-food employee who dropped her phone into a restaurant’s deep fryer. “It smelled pretty bad,” he said; however, the repairs were successful. Another customer lost his phone in a cement mixer. After some serious effort, the technicians were able to safely recover all of the important data, but the phone died a few hours later. As Wetherill pointed out, “it did go through a cement mixer.” Some miracles just aren’t meant to be.
On the importance of a one-day turnaround time
Repairs at uBreakiFix’s store locations can often take as little as an hour, according to Wetherill. This is a critical part of the shops' focus—something Wetherill personally understands. If forced to choose between spending the weekend without his smartphone or his left arm, he jokes that he would pick the arm. “Of course, this is assuming that there wouldn’t be any pain,” he laughs.
After spending years working for Dominos Pizza, Vince Schmuhl decided that he could do a better job of preparing and delivering quality pies to people's homes. He challenged the nationwide chain's dominance in the region by founding the first Blackjack Pizza on June 29, 1983.
Although delivering oven-fresh pies within 30 minutes was still a major goal for Schmuhl, he emphasized the importance of quality ingredients using sauce made from freshly packed tomatoes as well as hand-tossed dough that never sees the inside of a freezer or cryogenic chamber. This dedication to quality and speedy service allowed Blackjack Pizza to not only survive, but also thrive over the decades. The chain now includes more than 40 stores operating in four different states.
In addition to offering seven signature pies, Blackjack Pizza also allows customers to build their own order from crust to toppings. A choice of up to four savory, tangy, and piquant sauces form the base, topped with any of the 3 available cheeses, 7 meats, and 10 freshly diced vegetables. Regardless of the toppings, Blackjack Pizza respects the potential danger of food allergies by ensuring that none of its pies ever contain traces of MSG, peanuts, or peanut oil.
Jimmy Atkinson has more than six years of computer training under his belt, which is impressive for a man of 20. This uncommon Colorado State University student operates from just west of campus, setting technological problems straight with experience gathered from a lifetime with computers. Virus-ridden systems, sluggish laptops, and shattered cell phones all find relief under Jimmy's care. He also maintains a stock of hardware, including custom-length ethernet cables, wireless routers, and album mounts for clients' classic floppy discs.
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What services does your business offer and what makes your business stand out from the competition?
We operate locally out of Denver Colorado and all of our technicians are background checked and very professional. Customer Satisfaction is our priority
What was the inspiration to start or run this business?
Our inspiration was to bring the our computer knowledge to the public of Colorado. Helping out and giving back is our way to show we care.
What do you love most about your job?
I love completing a job and having a new satisfied customer. Also, problem solving. It's always great to complete a challenge and impress.
What is the best reaction you've ever gotten from a customer?
An elderly man told me I was a blessing. It was quite touching coming from a stranger