On this episode of Founder Focus with Steve Greenfield, we hear from Stephen Southin and Brian Steinhauser Co-CEOs and Co-Founders of the Toronto-based company, Discovery Loft. The two have known each other for eight years and saw an opportunity to join forces in 2018. The collaboration led to an application called “PAVE” which was created to revolutionize vehicle inspections. Founder Focus is a CBT series that focuses on the journeys of some amazing automotive founders.
Steinhauser begins the conversation by talking about his and Southin’s desire to work with one another. They both had seen the potential in a partnership from their past experiences. Steinhauser had a background in corporate sales experience working with several fortune 500 brands such as TD Bank, Samsung, Toyota, and Magna. Southin had over twenty-five years of experience in automotive retail and wholesale experience. He also had over fifteen years of technical and startup expertise.
Southin then dives into the start of PAVE. The idea came about from talking with clients and partners to see where they could meet needs and solve problems. The application provides vehicle self-inspections in a seamless and easy-to-use platform. PAVE provides accurate and consistent results that allow vehicles to be inspected and sold at a faster rate.
The popular question is then asked regarding if entrepreneurs are born or made over time. Steinhauser says it’s a combination of both for him. He tells the story of growing up and seeing how hard his dad worked and the rewards he reaped from it. Southin then says that he’s convinced people are not born entrepreneurs. He believes this because of the learning curve that comes with starting a business. He says the mistakes help develop an entrepreneur’s drive, and how an entrepreneur responds to those mistakes, determine how successful he or she will be.
The two men conclude the conversation by talking about creating an environment at Discovery Loft where people can grow and gain personal success. Southin says seeing others build successful careers from within his own company is his favorite part of what he does. Steinhauser agrees and says that building something from the ground up with others who have also given their best effort is the greatest reward in building a business.
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