Reinventing the Pawn Shop
When his family lost their Colorado farm in the late 1980s, a young Todd Hills went into town to pawn his saddle. “I got a lot less than the saddle was worth,” says Hills, ”but I walked away with a job.” That’s right: He went to work for the pawn broker — and had soon worked his way up the company ladder. He later struck out on his own and eventually sold his own 30-store pawn operation to a publicly traded firm in 2007. At that point, he stepped back and looked at the industry through a different lens. He saw two phenomena going on at the same time. One, the internet was developing into an ideal medium for scaling the traditional pawn model. And two, the financial crisis was creating a new kind of cash-crunched customer – middle- and upper-class folks, as well as entrepreneurs, looking for a financing alternative. In 2009, Hills launched Pawngo, which he initially called Internet Pawn. “At first people thought I was crazy to think people would mail in their valuables,” ...
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Found more than 1 month ago on channel CBS
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