Wednesday, April 13, 2011

March Client Spotlight: Champion Lock and Safe

 ACCION March Client Spotlight: 
Champion Lock and Safe

ACCION San Diego is proud to announce the refinancing and continued success of featured client, Champion Lock and Safe, a high-quality mobile Locksmith located in North County San Diego. Champion Lock and Safe has now been in business 17 years, and has continued to grow and reach out to the community. They help sponsor a small north county little league, and are striving to become more technologically inclined to expand their business from just the analog methods most people associate with "Locksmiths".

 Owners of Champion Lock and Safe, Kim and Robert Woods, are not your typical small business owners. Although like most entrepreneurs, Robert began with the dream of being his own boss and claiming ownership of his own business.  Through hard work, determination, wise entrepreneurial decisions, sound counseling and access to capital, they came to own a successful locksmith business.

The Woods initially sought a loan from traditional banks, but were turned down due to personal credit challenges. After seeing a television advertising spot from ACCION, the Woods decided they would apply for a loan with ACCION as an alternative means to financing.  ACCION gave tangible support services to the Woods in efforts to raise their credit, and also approved them for a business loan of $20,000 for the improvement and expansion of their business. 

Since receiving the loan, the Woods were able to expand their business by purchasing technologically-current equipment and a cost efficient second work vehicle. Kim Woods quoted, "What I loved best working with ACCION was the relationship, rapport and support base that ACCION gives. They don't just hand you the money and that's the end; their services for clients are continual with workshops, programs, and other educational tools for small businesses." 

 Robert first began working in the repossession business, and though this was not the most fulfilling line of work for Robert, he did enjoy the task of making keys. Robert also had a friend who was a locksmith; only stimulating his curiosity with key making. The combination of his experience with the repossession business, and the planted seed by his locksmith friend, eventually made his dream a reality.

Robert took his first step in the entrepreneurial track, and bought an existing Locksmith business that had been in practice for over twelve years.  Soon after, his wife Kim left her work at a doctor's office and joined him.  After 7 years of being in business, the Woods realized their need for financing to purchase equipment that makes copies of keys with internal transponders (many newer cars have these types of keys). Having this equipment would allow Woods to retain customers needing this service, and to generate more revenue since the price to make these keys are on the higher end. Furthermore, Woods realized the need for a newer work van to be used for on-site smaller jobs. Their old larger commercial truck was diesel and was no longer cost-effective. 

 Her advice to new entrepreneurs, is "Make sure it's your passion; starting a business takes a lot of time and effort. If you do begin the process of starting a business, be sure to get help, wise counsel and continue to learn! Things like ACCION's workshops help people learn about tools that are available for small business owners while sharpening their business skills." 

 The business is located on Bernardo Center Drive, amidst many banks and real estate agencies who are clients of Champion Lock & Safe. They are members of the Better Business Bureau as well as the North County Chamber of Commerce. 

For more information on Champion Lock and Safe call (858) 487-1114

For more information on ACCION San Diego, visit or call (619) 795- 7250 for questions regarding our loan programs.


  1. If you're moving to a new build home, such measures might come as standard, and a locksmith can provide the brand new locks for your brand new home.

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