UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

Shaping Leaders, Driving Results

UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School

Omar Garcia

Omar Garcia

Class:

MBA 1999

Title:

Founder

Company:

AVENTA Real Estate Services

"I'm a civil engineer. I love building stuff, whether it's a building or a company. My UNC Kenan-Flagler MBA helped prepare me to do both."

Professional career highlights

  • Named 2004 Entrepreneur of the Year by the Tampa Bay Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
  • Created and launched the online Partner Business Center, transforming the way Nortel managed relationships with its distributors, from paper and voice to the Internet
  • Opened AVENTA Real Estate Services in 2003; had 50 employees and three offices after being in business just over a year
  • Managed $23 million on construction contract as a Naval Civil Engineer Corps officer

Most important effect UNC Kenan-Flagler had upon me

"I'm a civil engineer. I love building stuff, whether it's a building or a company. My UNC Kenan-Flagler MBA helped prepare me to do both. I took courses in real estate, international business and Internet marketing, and I have used skill sets gained in these courses to help build a successful business."

What he does

Garcia combined knowledge from his experience as a director of business operations for Nortel with research to find a niche.

"I didn't want to be just another real estate company. I wanted something bigger that would grow throughout the Southeast and beyond."

After targeting his market, Garcia developed an innovative strategy.

"Customers are now able to do research online and create professional-looking brochures in their own homes. So, traditional brokerage companies aren't seen as providing a great deal of value, particularly in such a hot real estate market. However, in the Hispanic market, everyone from the realtor to the loan officer adds value as the buyers or sellers need a significant amount of assistance with the transaction."

Garcia saw a disruption in the value chain in working hard to land customers only to see them move on to other mortgage and title companies.

"We put all three services under one roof, so we derive three revenue streams from a single customer acquisition." He says that the model has proven to be a competitive advantage versus his competition, and the customer is served more efficiently.

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