Monday, September 29, 2014
Mike Regan is a renaissance man and a true entrepreneur. His love of adventure and an unquenchable curiosity has led him to many places and businesses in his life - from the dawning computer programming industry in the late 1960's (when 16K of memory required a computer six feet tall!) to owning a helicopter flight school. Mike's latest venture is running a Home Video Studio in Scottsdale, Arizona, and his approaching three year anniversary gives us pause to appreciate him and his wealth of knowledge and experience. Meet Mike Regan, Home Video Studio's September Owner of the Month.
Mike Regan was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. He enjoyed an idyllic childhood in the community of Roseland back when a day in the life of a kid from the Southside might include riding a train to the Loop, downing the world’s best hot dog (make it two) or catching a White Sox game at Comiskey Park.
Mike displayed an early interest in business, his first enterprise being that of a paperboy while in the sixth grade. He then went on to hold a variety of jobs while a student - from soda jerk to auto mechanic. After high school Mike enrolled in college with an emphasis on business courses. Already the prognosticator Mike was fascinated by the role he foresaw computers would play in the future of information management and jumped in with both feet.
Hired in the nativity of business computing Mike became a programmer for Greyhound Computer 1968. Starting development for strictly financial applications Mike’s contributions grew with the company and his department ended up making applications that encompassed every department and every operation. For nearly twenty five years Mike was a mainstay in this company which, after several emanations, became the Dial Corporation.
After this long tour in corporate America and the experience of a rather unceremonious downsizing Mike’s deep-seated entrepreneurial urges kicked in. He partnered with a PC-based software application developer to create a comprehensive back-end database management tool. This company, WestGroup Management Resources, Inc., grew mightily and soon caught the eye of AllTel Information Systems, who purchased it and retained Mike for a couple of years in a consultative capacity before he decided to tackle his next venture.
What does an ambitious and young (at heart) entrepreneur do next? Mike turned to one of his first loves...flying. As a college student Mike flew fixed-wing aircraft and decided he wanted to fly again, only this time in helicopters. As he researched flight schools he came across an opportunity to become a partner in a flight school business. Soon he was piloting not only aircraft but a flight school as part owner and Vice President of Universal Helicopters, Inc. Mike eventually sold his share of Universal, which is still a leader in the flight school industry.
Certainly now it was time to kick back a bit, right? Well, maybe not. Regan had always been a life-long home movie and photo enthusiast, and, like several of our owners, Mike became acquainted with Home Video Studio initially as a customer. He had the occasion to visit and use the services of a local Home Video Studio franchise in the Phoenix, Arizona area. Seeing the quality of HVS's service and recalling the fun he had with his dad’s wind-up movie camera as a kid he decided to investigate the possibility of becoming a franchise owner.
A call to Robert Hanley turned into an invitation, in late July of 2011, to Home Video Studio's annual Getaway in Las Vegas to check out the business. "The first thing that impressed me," says Regan, "was the transparency of HVS. I was given total access to whoever I chose to talk to and ask any questions.”
Two months later Mike was installed and open for business offering superior quality video products. After all his other life adventures how does this one compare? "I enjoy being able to truly connect with people on a personal basis by helping to restore their earlier memories." says Regan. " Serving the end-user was also new to me and I really enjoy taking on a high customer service attitude. This is really a great service and an important one." Mike has also won a Hanley award for video excellence in the Lifestories category.
Ever the visionary, Mike is drawn to the possibilities of Home Video Studio's newest venture: Digital Video Archive. He has been involved with this cloud-based video sharing technology from the beginning, working with Robert Hanley and others through its inception, R&D, and the impending rollout. From the information management evolution of the 1960's up to today’s cloud technology Mike has come full circle.
Mike Regan: newspaper boy, auto mechanic, soda jerk, pioneer software developer, helicopter pilot, multiple business owner...and a few things he probably forgot to mention. Asked if he has any advice for the youngsters Mike responds enthusiastically, "There's a lot of different things out there. Don't get stuck in 'sameness.' Enjoy the variety life offers!" Thanks Mike! And congratulations!