DEBARY — When Damon Kruid started DBK Construction & Service Inc. in 2007 as a home-based business in Deltona, he envisioned his company becoming a source of gainful employment not only for himself but for other families as well.
Today, the company, now based in a commercial building in DeBary that Kruid purchased in 2013, employs 66 workers and serves clients in multiple states. Its revenues in 2014 grew to a record $16.8 million, up an impressive 658 percent from its revenues in 2012.
That revenue growth earned DBK’s inclusion in Inc. magazine’s latest list of the nation’s 5,000 fastest-growing private companies, ranked by annual revenue growth over the past three years. DBK ranked No. 687 and was one of only two Volusia-Flagler area companies to make the Inc. 5000 list. The other company was Daytona Beach-based medical billing company Synergy Billing, whose annual revenues rose 403 percent from 2012 to 2014, earning it a No. 1,071 ranking.
Kruid began his career as an entrepreneur in 2002 when he launched a business called National Fire & Security and two years later added a second business called Global Gates, both based out of his home. When DBK began to take off, he merged his two other businesses with it to form one combined company.
Kruid recently spoke with The News-Journal on his keys for business success. The following are excerpts from that interview.
Was becoming one of the nation’s fastest-growing companies a goal for you?
No. Our growth has all been sustained controlled growth. We could have grown a lot more but we want to be able to deliver on our promises to our customer.
Is there a danger in growing too fast?
Absolutely. We’ve had big customers say to us, “Listen, don’t let us ruin you.” If you grow too fast your quality can go down. … We will take as much (new work) as we feel we’re comfortable in taking on. In California, Texas, Tennessee and Chicago we’ve passed on projects because we don’t feel we could meet our standards for quality.
What exactly does DBK do?
We specialize in multifamily renovations (of condominium and apartment complexes) but we also offer construction service solutions to residential and commercial customers.
What are your keys for business success?
Our focus on our customers and a work environment where our employees are happy to be here. Our retention rate is great for both customers and employees. … We also emphasize quality. Our motto is “Expect Higher Standards.” … We inspect our trucks every Monday both for cleanliness and safety. Everyone wears company uniforms.
How big do you think your company can become?
I want to grow to 300 to 400 (employees) in multiple states. … Five years from now, most likely we’ll be a $100 million company.
What do the initials DBK stand for?
My wife is Danielle and my daughters are Brenna and Kailey. My initials are also DBK: Damon Badger Kruid.
Before you became an entrepreneur, you worked as a security technician for a national company. What inspired you to branch out on your own?
I worked with 30 other technicians who were not happy with their jobs. … I wanted to start a business to create opportunities for other families and other people. I also always wanted to create a company that could last after I’m gone.