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AADA Article BMpaintingB&M started out in 1984 with a dad and his kids, an American dream, and a 15,000-dollar loan. They moved to Arkansas from Texas and set up shop in one building with three employees and two customers. Today they operate a seven-building operation, have over 60 employees, and now have customers from Arkansas as well as 32 other states. They are a very unique company in that they provide services for both Aerospace and Military purposes. They provide everything from missiles and bullets coatings to walk way coating and floor fittings used in cargo portions of planes.

B&M has been attending the Summit for going on seven years now, and hosted the meet and greet for the past five. Rauls explains, “The Summit allows us to all be in one big room together.” Brian Rauls, who has been a leader in sales and customer service, and has been with B&M for the past eight years, states, “You know, a lot of people say, if there is anything I can do to help, just let me know. But people like Chad Causey mean it.” He explains how much goes into the conference and emphasizes that AADA and people like Causey who help to orchestrate the event  put in “A lot of hard work and tireless, and thankless planning on their parts, all to bring the state together for three days a year.”

However, Rauls is the first to express his gratitude with what has become a successful and rewarding career for himself and many others who work at B&M. Since attending the Summit the local business has boomed with customers like Boeing, Cherokee Nation, and Dassault Falcon Jet, to just name a few.

Rauls reports, “Last year in sales between what we call our ‘Alliance Companies’ combined for 10% of total sales for B&M.” B&M Painting and Military Coating has gained 10 new customers within a year’s time, and Rauls states, “We directly attribute this success to this annual conference…we feel we have a better foothold in our own state now.”

He also explains that as their customers grow, their company will grow, which falls in line with the Alliance’s goal to, “growing the aerospace, aviation, and defense infrastructure in Arkansas, and training a qualified workforce.” The future plans of B&M are to grow their own workforce by 10% by strategically gaining a couple more contracts and approvals from companies such as Lockheed Martin Aeronautics. They have their audit approval set for this coming March, and everything is looking promising.

According to Rauls, obtaining business from the Summit was not an instant success, but like all things worth having, requires hard work and determination. Both values of which B&M continues to practice, and it certainly has paid off, in the literal sense, for B&M within five years of attending the Summit.

He encourages companies that may be struggling to see their efforts rewarded, potential Summit attendees, and aspiring small Arkansas businesses “That none of us can do individually, what we could all accomplish collectively,” and he emphasizes, “Keep coming back, a lot can happen in a year.”