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Mike DeLeonardo’s shoeing business is far from typical. “We have an eight-man business. We have three secretaries. We have three trucks on the road every day,” the farrier from Salinas, Calif., told an audience at the International Hoof-Care Summit in Cincinnati, Ohio. “We have a farrier center that’s 160 feet by 60 feet. It has offices and a recovery area for horses. We have a shoeing area that’s 44 feet by 16 feet and a shop that has eight workstations. One has a coal forge and the other seven are gas.”
And if that’s not enough, add in the fact that DeLeonardo Horseshoeing, Inc., also has a full-time veterinarian on the payroll and a full X-ray department with the ability to develop all the X-rays it can shoot.
So how did Leonardo build this booming shoeing business? At least in part through trial and error. “I’ve made about every mistake you can think of,” he says with a laugh.
He’s also built his business over time. He’s been in the horseshoeing business for more than 30 years and has been in a multi-farrier business for the last 25. He offers this advice on where you should start if you think you might want to try starting a multi-farrier operation.
“You need to ask yourself why you want to start a multi-farrier business,” he says. “Maybe you’re tired of working alone. Maybe you want to make more money. Maybe you have 10 years into the business and think when you have…