Student Profile: Stan Garber, Finance
Two things strike you when you meet finance major Stan Garber for the first time. At first you can’t help but notice how young he looks and then he starts talking and you can’t help but be amazed at how experienced he sounds.
Driven, energetic students are practically the norm for Weatherhead but what distinguishes Garber and his two fellow Case-student partners is their ability to juggle a demanding class schedule all the while growing their Weatherhead100 company.
"We started O-Web Technologies more than three years ago, as I entered my first year at Case,” Garber explains the origins of his company with high school friends Alex Yakubovich, a junior in mechanical engineering and Oleg Friedman, junior in computer science. “We began offering simple Web-design projects, from $500 to $1,000, for small local businesses. In the beginning we got a lot of leads from our parents and their friends."
From those humble beginnings, Garber and his partners have grown O-Web Technologies into a successful Web and innovative technology company, with an impressive array of clients as diverse as the Cleveland Clinic and Spy Bar.
By year three we went from taking those $500 and $1,000 jobs to working on projects worth $3,000 to $4,000 and now we don’t take on many jobs under $6,000,” says Garber.
Those numbers constitute impressive growth for any new business, but more so when you factor in the rigorous Case academic schedule and the fact that all of O-Web Tech’s partners have a 3.75 G.P.A. or higher.
"We have a system," explains Garber. “I have class from 10 to 3 in the morning, so Monday through Friday we have conference calls with our clients every other night. We work Friday nights and a full day Saturday and have meetings on Sunday. But I’m always thinking about O-Web Technologies,” Garber adds.
Garber’s hectic non-stop schedule is almost enough to make you feel sorry for him, but he, like all true entrepreneurs, can’t imagine doing anything else. “Alex and I always talked about starting a company. We were those guys talking about stocks in high school,” he says.
And for Garber and his company, being on campus and a member of Weatherhead has been integral in the successful growth of O-Web Technologies.
"Case opens up a lot of doors and connects you to a lot of networks, especially when you tell people that you are from Weatherhead,” says Garber, who has also taken advantage of the expertise of his professors. “Scott Fine (Professor for the Practice of Banking and Finance) has been really supportive of us and he is on our board of advisors,” explains Garber.
Garber is scheduled to graduate in 2007 and his partners will follow a year later, which means they will have even more time to dedicate to the business. He has plans to expand the business to include the marketing of new Web applications for cell phones and PDAs.
With all of Garber’s ambition and success, it might raise the question: Why did he decide to pursue a degree at all?
You have to understand that Alex, Oleg, and I all came to the U.S. when we were young. My family is from Moldavia, Alex came from Moscow, and Oleg is from the Ukraine,” explains Garber. “My father has an upholstery studio and works very hard. If I didn’t go to college or even finish school, my parents would ring my neck."