Address: 1830 Wayne Trace
At a glance: Indiana Benefits Recovery finds unclaimed money and then searches for the rightful owner, sometimes the next-of-kin for someone who is deceased. The company makes its income by taking a percentage of the money found with life insurance companies, banks, pensions, estates and other sources. Theres millions and millions of dollars out there in Indiana alone thats unclaimed, said Brent Minnick, president. Although the company will sometimes look for lost accounts if a potential client comes in, that kind of searching is rarely successful unless the person has an account number.
Employees: 5, including Minnick, and about 12 contractors
Annual revenue: About $75,000 in 2009
When was the company founded: August 2007
Biggest accomplishment in the past 12 months: My favorite by far has been a World War II veteran who we initially gave $20,000, who in the first 12 months since we met, we have put $50,000 in his pocket total, Minnick said. The man, who lives in Columbus, Ind., will continue to see an additional $25,000 in income and savings each year from a veterans pension and savings on his prescriptions and medical bills, Minnick said.
What are the key challenges facing your business or industry? Without a doubt, the key challenge is credibility, Minnick said. When the company contacts someone to say he is due money, the news is often greeted with skepticism. Minnick has been both hung up on and sworn at. But he encourages people to check out the company, which is registered with the Indiana secretary of state, a member of the Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce, and has an A- rating with the Better Business Bureau. The minus, Minnick said, is only because the company has been in business less than three years.
What are your growth projections for the next five years? Minnicks goal is to return $1 million to people and businesses in 2010; within five years hed like to establish a national reputation and possibly offer franchises.
What is one thing about your business that people might not be aware of? The average claim takes the company 15 to 40 hours to complete. To make the effort pay off, the staff tries to find people only when the amount of unclaimed money is $5,000 or more. About 30 percent of claimants are deceased, so the company pays a genealogy expert to help track down survivors. So much of our work is on the research side, Minnick said.