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How This App Is Making a Permanent Change in the Rental Industry A Hollywood production company saves money -- and client relationships -- with an inventory-tracking app.

By Jonathan Blum

This story appears in the October 2015 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Marc Royce
Damage control: Mikel Elliott of Quixote Studios in Hollywood.

In 1995, Mikel Elliott, the son of a movie grip, purchased a motor home, fitted it with tables and makeup mirrors and started renting it out to photographers. That business became Hollywood's Quixote Studios, which now owns a dozen soundstages and rents out more than 600 production vehicles, plus a full array of film and TV equipment, to productions around the U.S. But success came to Elliott at a steep cost—in the form of damaged gear. Taillights were shattered. Leather was stained. Tables were crushed. And it was a never-ending hassle to get clients to pay for what they trashed.

"[Renting] trucks and trailers is not a sexy business," Elliott says. "You can provide the best service, but if you screw up the invoice and how you handle any damages with a client, forget about it—they won't come back."


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