Purple Heart Pawn & Gun
National Pawnbroker (NP): Tell us about your background and how you got started in the pawn business.
Mike Meyer (MM): In 2007, I stumbled upon an ad for a management position at College Station Pawn. I fell in love with the business and scrapped my plans of becoming a teacher/coach to be a pawnbroker. After graduation, I worked for EZ Pawn in Dallas, TX. A year later, my father and I opened Purple Heart Pawn & Gun in Fort Worth. I took the small, personal feel of College Station Pawn and the structure of EZ Pawn to form a successful pawnshop.
NP: How did you come up with your store name, Purple Heart Pawn?
MM: I joined the Marines after high school and served with the 1st Marine Division in Iraq as an Infantryman (0311). While sweeping a field for our supply convoy, I was shot eight times by a single Fedayeen soldier in a small village southeast of Baghdad called Al Azziziah Iraq. Later, I was awarded the Purple Heart medal and decided it would be an interesting story for our customers. We get a lot of veterans who come in just for the name.
NP: How do you keep on top of all the business decisions you have to make every day?
MM: With as much regulation, compliance, and logistics that go on in the pawn and firearm industries, you really have to pay attention to the details. My best advice is:
- Delegation – While in the Marines, I learned to delegate tasks to others.
- Checklists – I’m sure most of your readers have at least one or two in their office to help them remember the many things they need to do.
NP: What is your vision for your company?
MM: We’re actually under contract to buy our second pawnshop in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, so we’re obviously pretty excited for the opportunity to grow and expand our company.
NP: How do you get customers into your store?
MM: We advertise through Yellow Pages, Yellow Book, Facebook, Twitter, etc., and we’re not ashamed to ask our customers to give us reviews. Our online presence has been very successful.
NP: How do you give back to your community?
MM: We donate money and merchandise to several area schools and also donate to several law enforcement organizations. We think it’s vital to have a good relationship with your local law enforcement, and who doesn’t like helping kids?
NP: Why are you a member of NPA?
MM: We joined the NPA when we opened because the (Member) Forum that the NPA provides is a great place to share and to learn from other pawnbrokers. Most importantly, we needed a combined voice that our one store couldn’t provide. The ability to join forces with other pawnbrokers to help protect our business is extremely vital.