Ultimate Care founder Nathan Fougnies didn’t get into the car business because of an obsession with Ferrari GTOs or Ford Pintos. Instead, his path has been paved thanks to his purely entrepreneurial spirit.
“I’ve always been independent, and so my career has kind of taken its own path. I started working as a photographer back when I was still in school. Nights and weekends I’d be in nightclubs taking photos. I started to get a reputation, I worked with some well-known arts and architecture photographers, I even traveled to Paris and New York with big accounts and eventually started doing bigger events.”
As he met more people, his photography work led to opportunities in adjacent sectors. Nathan took advantage, always on the lookout for new ways to provide value to his clients.
“One day there was a need that came along, and I got into automobile services. At first I was just an intermediary, putting people in contact with each other, but then I started selling car cosmetics products, too. A friend helped me to put together an online site using Magento, even though it was kind of messy.”
But as a hands-on person, Nathan wasn’t satisfied with just putting together a site and acting as a middleman. Two key questions arose: how could he guarantee both the quality of the products he was selling and the uses for which they were intended?
“I figured that as long as I was selling these products, I ought to know how to actually use them. So I started learning, I ended up opening my own workshop, finding early clients… It grew from there.”
In the early days, Nathan found himself doing most of his learning on his own, since there weren’t any training programs in car detailing. The only people tangentially involved in “training” were salespeople trying to get him to buy their product. As his business grew, he saw that the lack of a more objective program was another opportunity.
“I’ve always wanted to give people the knowledge I learned, because that doesn’t really exist in this sector. Car detailing isn’t something you go to school for, but it can be a very good business. I wanted to offer people a true training program, not like I did, where it was more salespeople trying to get you to buy their product, but to actually understand the techniques and products so you can be autonomous and go into business for yourself.”
As his training programs grew in popularity, he ran directly into his OrderCast use case. Since he’s training people to become professionals themselves, he now has a pipeline for developing B2B wholesale orders. Given how easy it was to integrate OrderCast with his current ERP Odoo, Nathan saw it as a no-brainer.
“In the first days talking with OrderCast, I said I didn’t want to worry about having two sites. They understood exactly what I meant, and showed how we could use the API with Odoo. Having that running means everything flows smoothly between my ERP, my e-commerce site with OrderCast, and my customers’ ordering experience.”
Now that everything’s set up, Nathan only sees upside for his expanding SMB.
“It’s great because I only have one site to manage, one back end for my stock… It’s just really easy.”