We had the good fortune of connecting with Alex & Nathan Packard and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Alex & Nathan, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
We are brothers who bought a small business that has existed since 1978. One of us, Alex, has worked in the marine canvas industry for several years and for the previous owner for a few before the owner retired. We saw the potential for the business in a boating community like San Diego and have wanted to be business owners for a while, so we bought Canvas Services. Our thought process was that we have always worked well together, complement each other’s skillsets, and can bring a fresh perspective to an old industry and business. Nathan wanted to have a break from computer screens and Alex knew he had what it takes to manage business operations. So far, we’ve adapted to being business owners fairly smoothly and are learning and improving every day.

What should our readers know about your business?
Our business, Canvas Services, manufactures and repairs covers and upholstery for mostly boats, but also homes and business. What sets us apart is an experienced team, some of whom have worked for Canvas Services for several decades. Also, we pride ourselves on using technology and a customer-focused perspective to be organized, meet deadlines, and strive to impress our customers at every turn in an industry that can be unreliable.

We got to where we are today by a combination of good fortune and hard work. Nathan has a background in tech and nonprofit, while Alex has many years of experience in the marine canvas industry. The previous owner of Canvas Services offered us his business at a very reasonable rate, and the transition of ownership went smoothly. That being said, neither of us had experience as business owners and took over a very busy operation, so we had to learn on our feet.

Along the way, we have learned to be patient, timely, responsive, transparent, and organized. A clean and efficient shop operation leads to more stress-free business and happy customers. And of course, being focused on quality goes much further than simply trying to get jobs out the door.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Alex loves surfing and spends the majority of his time at the beach, so he would recommend going to Ocean Beach or maybe Windansea to jump in the water and enjoy the sunshine. Nathan is currently addicted to golf, so if this friend were also, he’d take them to Balboa Park golf course. And if they weren’t into golf, he’d still take them to Balboa Park because it’s really quite nice. For food and drink, we might stop at La Perla Cocina Mexicana #3 because it’s fantastic and right near our canvas shop, and then we’d get a beer at Lucy’s in Ocean Beach because it’s such a fun time.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Our shoutout goes to Mike Gavin, the previous owner of Canvas Services, who generously sold his business to us and helped us get established for the first several months of operation. Not only did Mike give us this opportunity, but also he laid the groundwork over decades of ownership for an incredible amount of goodwill among the boating community in San Diego. We have so many returning customers and are a household name in the local industry thanks to the work Mike did for all those years. We are so grateful for everything Mike has taught us and for the amazing opportunity to be the fortunate owners of his great business.

Website: https://www.canvasservices.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/canvasservices/

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