But even then he would show the self starting entrepreneurial spirit that would separate him from his peers. Working as a car stereo installer he developed deep understandings of auto sound installation and was before his time anticipating the future demand for quality auto sound systems. Branching out on his own he became extremely successful selling greatly enhanced sound systems to local auto dealers and their customers. Marketed as The Preferred Auto Solution he made solid connections with several dealers, and auto dealer groups that would give rise to future endeavors.
Leveraging his knowledge of aftermarket products, and the demand for such products he went after what was in these pre-SUV times in high demand. A family type vehicle that would fit into a normal garage and be driven daily, yet was perfect for road trips, and family vacations. Namely the family van conversion. Starting modestly, actually in his own garage. Paul went on to develop a company that in 5 years was at the apex of the industry, almost single-handedly. The Omniicraft Company was the third largest in the world at a time when the industry was huge. Remarkably Paul was the inventor, designer, production manager, and lead sales person traveling across America. Employing 130 people in a 200,000 square foot building. He soon opened a second plant in Houston, Texas building the Empire Coach.
With the proliferation of the SUV market Paul saw the handwriting on the wall and sold his company and invested in a west Texas new car franchise. Focusing on making financing available to the average working person and those with some challenges Mr Blanco increased the rate of sales from a measly 5 new vehicles a month to an incredible 160 per month.
He sold this business to follow his dream of living in California (near his siblings). Paul purchased a Ford dealership in gorgeous Calistoga, California in the heart of the wine country. Once again he was again a smashing success.
More parent companies took notice of this upstart, dynamic marketer who had carved out a niche in the market place that was underserved. Soon he had a Sacramento Chevrolet, and Mitsubishi franchise. Being in an economically depressed area of the city he took steps to reach out to the community with opportunities for the residents, he strived to improve the access to services and employment for the minorities he served. Particularly, the Latino and Hispanic community. He took steps to markedly improve the availability of financing to by offering upwards of 2 dozen lenders that cater to this hardworking community of Americans. By Increasing of course the Spanish speaking staff, and service personnel, the outreach was hugely successful.
In another community service effort he opened a South Sacramento Flea Market. Operated as a community service in which it quickly became the cornerstone of many small businesses in the area. Several of which have prospered and operate to this day. This venue garnered the attention of many media outlets, and as a result countless successful businesses were featured in various publications.
The Blanco family enterprises have moved into other parts of the city, and California in subsequent years. Their unique, and hugely successful "Fresh Start Program" was opened and operates at the Paul Blanco Good Car Company on 2200 Fulton Ave in Sacramento. This location was and is a resounding success story leading to a similar operation in Stockton which does a terrific volume of business. Paul and Putu, his wife and partner have a third location in Fresno, Ca. And of course as with the other businesses this too is a success story. His future expansion plans include Southern California for multiple dealerships. Where he hopes to offer the same good will, and service to thousands more Californians.
As a side note: Paul happens to be the nephew of former Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco, and as such took on a huge Hurricane Katrina relief effort. He is reluctant to take credit, but assisted in coordinating the California Wave of Compassion. Desperately needed goods, and life saving commodities were collected by Paul and his crew. He organized a truck convoy, even driving a truck himself delivering these much needed, and precious cargo of food, water, diapers, and other hygiene products. Bringing a kind of magic into an impoverished and devastated landscape. Stopping along the way, gathering more as he traveled. And then Supervising the distribution himself on the strickened land.
Paul Blanco is truly a man of the people, and a selfless human being.
Frank Creech | Automotive Guru
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