From Crain's Detroit Business:
Post-layoff passion project proves life-changing for Slot Mods founder
by Zack Burgess
After losing his office job five years ago, David Beattie made a life-changing decision to pursue his passion for the racetrack — specifically, the miniature racetrack.
He found his true calling: slot car racing. What began as a hobby when he built models in his garage became a company: Slot Mods USA.
Slot Mods has developed a reputation for the elaborate installations produced at its 5,500-square-foot plant in Clinton Township. Think of them as the ultimate prize for car junkies who want the best and are willing to pay for it.
"The growth has come through magazine advertising and networking," Beattie said. "We've built tracks for billionaires. I can't say who they are because they are private individuals."
Having an "in" with luxury retailers is another boost for the company.
Over the holidays, the Slot Mods USA track was named one of Neiman Marcus' 10 fantasy gifts for Christmas. The Slot Mods USA Ultimate Slot Care Raceway is priced at $300,000 and includes a re-creation of the buyer's fantasy track along with an inaugural race night party co-hosted by racing legends such as Vic Elford and David Hobbs.
For each sale, Neiman Marcus donates $3,500 to The Heart of Neiman Marcus Foundation, which supports youth arts education. Last fall, Beattie made his television debut on NBC's "Today" Show to talk about the fantasy gift.
Not all the tracks cost $300,000. Beattie said the average cost to build a track is $125,000. And there are tracks that start at $50,000. But it is a splurge item: Beattie's average customer has a net worth of $250 million to $1 billion.
To read the rest of the story, Click HERE.