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Detroit Trading Company

2000 Town Center
Suite 1300
Southfield, MI 48075

Pete Bonner

What educational, entrepreneurial or business development programs, if any, have you taken advantage of?
I've been involved in three start up's and have learned every day on the job. I have dabbled with Dale Carnegie and some executive leadership courses, etc., but I never was able to stick those courses out.

Who was your first customer and where did you find them?
AutoUSA. We had a previous relationship at Stoneage.com. They are a subsidiary of AutoNation, the largest retailer of new cars in the US. They are still one of our best customers six years later.

Where did you find your first employee?
We didn't have to look far, because it was my wife, Becky. She is our office manager and handles payroll and other HR duties.

Have you promoted an intern to employee status, and if so how many times have you done it?
The interns we have had have all gone back to college after their internship, which generally lasts 3-4 months. We generally hire people for a full-time job right out of the gate after determining our needs. For instance, we recently hired a marketing manager to get our story out more efficiently. It's something we have needed for a long time and it took some time to find the right person that would fit into our culture.

Where have you turned to find capital to grow your company and which institutions have provided it?
It's all been private investments from folks like Anik Ganguly at Gain Group. We haven't gotten a loan from any banks. We take on investment from those who we are familiar with and who all have a track record of success in their respective fields. We view our investors as people who can help us get to the next level. The money is really secondary as we were already well capitalized prior to taking on any investments.

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