Small Business Owner Relying on 2nd Round of PPP Loans, Continued Community Relationships to Stay Open

A Chula Vista tow company has managed to stay open thanks in large part to the first round of PPP loans, as well as its relationship with the military community

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For so many businesses struggling to survive, the second round of PPP loans could not come sooner.

Signature Towing out of Chula Vista has managed to stay open 24 hours a day, seven days a week with a tiny staff of four thanks to the first round of loans. But that’s not all.

Owner Larry White said it’s because of the niche of military business they’ve built in the community that kept them open. This time around, he said, while the money won’t be as much, it’s just as important.

“There’s different sides of the coin you know. Some people are really happy to see us and some are not too happy to see us, but we got a job to do and we’re gonna be out there doing it,” said White.

Cars in his lot would normally mean there's business. But in this case, White said, the owners of these cars can’t afford to get them back. White said he does his best to work with each one, including deployed soldiers, to figure something out.

“It’s a horrible thing that everybody’s going through. It’s a big learning experience for people and their families. I think it’s brought families closer which is I think probably the only positive thing,” said White.

The first round of loans went solely to his three employees on payroll. For White, they are family too as well as the community where he's built relationships.

“When a sailor breaks down, we have discounted rates for the military so we go out there and we’ll respond to those types of calls,” said White.

His military contacts have helped keep business steady enough to stay open. At a time when shutdowns mean fewer cars, fewer tows affect the core of his business.

“The roadside assistance and stuff like that, every towing company is out there just fighting for it. But if you got a niche that really helps you and pushes you forward,” said White. “You’ll make it through. You’ve just got to find a way to do it that’s all.”

A secret Santa was so grateful, they dropped an envelope of cash and a nice letter for Christmas. He feels its from someone he has helped out in the past.

“Focus on your business. Focus on continuing to take care of your customers. Run it the same way you always have. Don’t try and do anything different,” said White.

He's confident the second round of PPP loans will help him continue investing in people over cars, that have so far kept him in business.

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