Through alumnus Christopher Hostetter’s unique journey, one thing is clear: He never lost sight of his dream to own his own business. Today, the proud business owner attributes his ability to achieve this dream to many of the lessons he learned during his time at Hiram College.
Hostetter had been out of the Army for less than a year before he began his collegiate career at Hiram in 2008, where he was a political science major with an interest in entrepreneurship.
At the time, Hiram had only recently launched its entrepreneurship minor, but Hostetter seized every opportunity he had to develop those skills by participating in idea competitions. In one of those competitions, Hostetter’s pitch of an eco-friendly cab company received full support from the judges. After the competition, he altered his idea slightly from a cab company into a limo service, which seemed more viable.
This idea never quite had the chance to reach the startup phase because soon thereafter, Hostetter had to unfortunately leave Hiram due to personal obligations. He moved back to his hometown, Cincinnati, where he worked full time in the automotive sales industry. During this time, he never lost sight of his dream of owning his own company, and credits much of that to what he learned as a Hiram student.
“I have always remembered the values and ideologies that I learned in the courses from Hiram,” he said. “Hiram gave me the gift of what I consider my peripheral vision in business. The diversity in Hiram is so vast that it is very easy to widen your vision of what may derail your project.”
And with a lot of hard work, today, Hostetter’s dream of owning his own business is a reality. His company is built on the foundation from an idea he got in 1999, when he was working for a mason whose equipment removed graffiti off different types of stones. After his boss retired, Hostetter took over the equipment, and in Sept. 2012, Hostetter started Titan Media Blasting.
Titan Media Blasting is a sand blasting company in the restoration and cleaning industry. Titan’s clients are typically classic and antique car restorers, specialty car builders, and the company is starting to also do work on log home restoration and luxury yachts. Since the initial startup, Hostetter has gained a business partner Jermey Dakin, and Titan officially became a business in Nov. 2013.
“Phases two and three of our company’s business goals include state of the art powder coating and industrial coatings,” Hostetter said. “Once everything is going, I want to revisit the idea of specialty cars such as a hybrid limo.”
Eager to share his experiences of what to do and what not to do when starting up a business, Hostetter will be leading a Fireside Chat for the Center for Integrated Entrepreneurship on March 5 at 7 p.m. in East Hall Fourm.
“I really look forward to working with Hiram and helping the students,” he said.