August 1, 2011

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Energy Development in Utah

Gov. Gary R. Herbert sent a strong message to Washington during his State ...Read More

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Alex Lawrence

Jenni Smith




Industry Outlook

Utah Business Staff

August 1, 2011

NELSON: Hire a great team and give them a very clear strategy.

LOCKHART: Do whatever it takes to get the job done.

ARCHIBALD: Our employees are our number one customer. And that’s how we treat them.

As an entrepreneur, what price have you paid to ensure your company’s success?

ROPELATO: Anyone who starts a company gives up a lot of family life. I now have three of my sons and two of my brothers working in the company. And it’s a pleasure to go to work every day and work with them.

PEDERSEN: About 700,000 Delta miles in the last six years.

LINTON: Which means you miss games, you miss birthdays, you miss all these things.

ARCHIBALD: For me, it’s financial sacrifice. I don’t have any angel investments. I don’t have any funding. I’ve had to be very creative financially with my company in the hard times. Life insurance policies, credit cards—you name it, I have done it all. I have sold my soul to keep this company going.

CULLIMORE: I want Christine to know it doesn’t happen just when you’re a startup company. We’ve been around for 30 years.

ARCHIBALD: Exactly. We’ve had the roller coaster ride.

CULLIMORE: We tried very hard to go out of business a few years ago, and we didn’t succeed.

Does Utah have a challenge with its reputation, with its brand? How’s that impacting you?

PEDERSEN: Our stock prices have grown nicely over the last year from $2 to roughly $13 a share, but we have the number one largest short position on NASDAQ right now. Fifty percent of our shares are short. I mean, it’s waging a war every single day. And one of the things that I’m having to fight all the time is that we’re a Utah company.

There have been promoters and companies in the past that have given us a bad reputation for being public.

TANNER: You fight that image all the time. We just did a big deal with Siemens in Europe, mostly so that we could say we weren’t a Utah company. It’s an image that gets branded on you. You can deny it all you want, but it brands.

PEDERSEN: And the thing is, I’m so pro-Utah, and I’m out there spreading the gospel of Utah, that we are good guys, great people and great companies and we’re overcoming the odds—but it’s definitely fighting upstream to overcome the perception.

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