Considering Ray’s enthusiasm for anything automotive, it’s no surprise one of his first ventures built custom vehicles. Opened in 2001, Meridian Automotive Design did everything from tune vehicles to build show cars for celebrities. Vanna White, Adam Carolla, and Robby Krieger (guitarist for The Doors) can be counted among the famous clientele. The shop earned a reputation for its custom tuning and exhaust systems, making Ferraris sound like Formula One racecars. In late 2003, after building a booming automotive business with a loyal following, Ray sold his portion of the company to his partner.
Ray's personal racecar shown above
Ray entered the Ink & Toner business in early 2004 consulting for a large re-manufacturer in the industry. In this role, Ray led and completed a 300,000-square-foot build out of the company’s global headquarters. Using state-of-the-art technology, Ray and his team engineered an automated production facility with miles of conveyor systems, PLC controls, and QC/QA stations.
In early 2006, Ray left the Ink & Toner industry to pursue opportunities in the consumer electronics sector. Securing contracts with Walmart.com, Fry’s Electronics, Target, Costco, and several other major retail outlets, Ray developed and manufactured private label brands for big box stores. Among the popular items in production were MP3 players, digital cameras, USB devices and accessories, LCD TVs and monitors, and Bluetooth headsets. From sourcing to stocking the big box shelves, Ray provided full-service solutions.
2007 proved a busy year for Ray, as he launched three successful companies that year.
ASK Diversified Partners, Inc. With a knack for bringing the right people together and building infrastructure, Ray launched a fulfillment company in 2007. Offering complete 3PL services, including e-commerce solutions, ASK also sold fashion merchandise to online retailers such as Overstock.com. Sourcing product, managing shipping logistics, and negotiating transportation were the company’s specialties. ASK was successfully acquired in 2010.
Also in 2007, Ray founded Renovatio Cabinetry, which manufactured high-quality hardwood cabinetry for the REIT industry. The company excelled at volume installations using premium materials. Renovatio was acquired in 2009.
Seesmart Inc. The third company completing Ray’s 2007 trifecta, Seesmart entered the market designing, engineering, and manufacturing LED lamps and fixtures. It was one of the first businesses of its kind to illuminate sustainability and energy-efficiency from the implementation of LED lighting technology. Catering to commercial and industrial clientele, Seesmart offered a complete line of LED lighting products.
Ray saw an opportunity in the clean tech space. As Seesmart brand founder, he not only invested in LED lighting, but also in people, establishing a corporate culture in which happy employees thrived. Benefits included 100% coverage for health and dental insurance, tuition reimbursement, and birthday cakes for everyone’s special day. The thriving Seesmart was acquired by a public company in 2012. Ray continued to work with Seesmart through its transition into May 2014.
2015 to present
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