For nearly three months the mother and son team of Lisa and Diontay Little have been operating Experimac, a computer-related business located at 1617 S. Braddock Ave., Unit B in Edgewood Towne Center.
“I am very proud of my son,” says Lisa. “As a young African American male, he has a lot going on. It’s good that he wants to be an entrepreneur. At the age of 22 he is serving as a role model.”
After studying graphic design and film at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, Diontay says while he considered going into business, he knew he wanted to invest into something of which he could utilize his creative skills. Something of which he and his mom both would have an interest.
The Littles describe Experimac as a source for Apple product repairs and upgrades, pre-owned sales and trade-ins for iPhones, iPad tablets, iMac computers, MacBook laptops and more. “At Experimac Edgewood, we are your local Mac experts,” explained Lisa, with Diontay indicating that they repair everything Apple. “If your computer or device is out-of-warranty, or just old, we can help you. If you have used Apple products, we can buy them from you and offer you more if you trade them towards something newer.”
Even though he and the other technicians are “I-Certified,” they also have the capabilities to repair personal computers and sell a variety of computer and cell phone accessories.
In operation since September, Lisa says as more people utilize their services, they are getting a good feel for their customers’ needs. “This is our way of working out the kinks before our grand opening during Black Friday and Small Business Saturday.”
The Littles are also getting familiar with the Edgewood and Swissvale communities. “This area is up-and-coming and we are excited to be here,” said Lisa, explaining that for the past year they diligently searched for the right location.
Excited about bringing the Experimac franchise to the East End area of the Greater Pittsburgh area, Diontay sees a big need for the services the company offers. “With electronics such a vital component of today’s technology, having the capabilities to provide pre-owned Apple products, to offer repairs and upgrades as well as providing the opportunity to sell or trade is key.”
He noted that screen repair has been a big service he’s been offering. “Our prices are compatible to other companies that offer what we do, but the difference is that our work and products are certified.”
Lifelong Hill District residents, Diontay says Experimac has a hard-working attitude that Pittsburghers are used to. Describing the company, he said it was started out of the owner’s garage nine years ago in West Palm Beach, Fla. Soon after the business expanded and the opportunity to own Experimac locations through franchising was offered. The owner teamed up with the founder and CEO of the franchising company United Franchise Group in February 2015 with a plan to take the concept worldwide. There are two franchises in the Pittsburgh region and one in King of Prussia, Pa.
Diontay said when researching what business to go into he was impressed with Experimac’s one-of-a-kind concept of specializing in selling pre-owned Apple products, selling accessories, making repairs, taking trade-ins, and selling software and system updates. “The products and services that Experimac offers are in high demand and found in one place,” he said.
He is also pleased with the in-depth training he and his other technicians received. “We are totally prepared to handle all repairs or upgrades and are committed to providing same day service, fix while you wait and good customer service.”
Pleased with the way the business is progressing and enthusiastic about the developments occurring within the mall, the Littles are looking forward to a positive future. After working for more than a year to get the business open, they feel there is nowhere else to go but up. “We have learned a lot during the process. It has been a struggle and we have overcome many obstacles along the way,” explained Lisa. She said coupled with the challenge of finding a location and because they were a startup business, they had difficulty receiving financing. “We both have good credit scores and my house is paid off but that did not matter to the SBA or financial institutions. But the denials just made us work harder and as a result the business is self-financed.”
Their goal is to stabilize and grow the business and perhaps within five years open a second location.
Wanting to continue the legacy of the Little name left by his grandfather, the late Judge Walter R. Little, and Uncle Anderson, a well-known radio producer, Diontay, who’s middle name is Walter, says his goal is to always make sure his business is operated efficiently and to do the best he can to satisfy his customers.
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