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Tuesday, June 25, 2024

UF student starts MobileGraphix ad service

A summer job washing airplanes in high school was all it took for Jake Rothstein to know he never wanted to work under someone else's control again.

Rothstein, a UF sophomore, said the only way to avoid that situation was to start his own business.

The result was MobileGraphix Inc., an advertising company that charges local businesses to display a logo across the rear-window of hired drivers' cars.

Rothstein recruits young employees, typically students, to drive the ad-adorned cars to and from school and while running errands in highly traveled areas in Gainesville.

The advertising sticker is a vinyl adhesive material that still allows the driver to see through the rear windows.

The service starts at about $130 per car per month.

Rothstein said he has been aggressively recruiting clients since the business opened last week, but the fliers, e-mails, phone calls and door-to-door approaches have yet to land him his first client.

"It's tough doing this by myself," he said. "But I think it's really going to take off. It benefits local companies by giving them a cheaper form of advertising and students who want to make a little extra money by just driving their car around."

Nandy Ferguson, manager of the Florida Book Store said she knows consumers would see the car advertisements, but she was not sure they'd pay attention to them.

"People have become smarter and more sophisticated shoppers," Ferguson said. "They know when a gimmick is a gimmick, and this is a gimmick."

Still, Rothstein continues to pursue local bars, restaurants, attorneys and any other businesses that might be interested in MobileGraphix out of the office located in his apartment.

"All I need is one solid customer who is happy with the service," Rothstein said. "After that, I know it will build on itself."

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