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Meet Rodney Nejathaim of Royal Stone and Tile in West Los Angeles

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rodney Nejathaim.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Rodney. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Our business was started in 1992 by my mother and father. During high school I would often help out at the store and it wasn’t until my senior year of high school when my mom got pregnant, requiring me to take over for her full time. What I thought was just a temporary job resulted in my permanent position at this business. From that point on I never looked back and with hard work and perseverance our small family owned company grew in size.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Since our business is very reliant on the real estate economy, we definitely struggled during the 2000 and 2007 economic crashes. We patiently stood by while we experienced long days of no customers coming in, projects being cancelled due to limited funds, and canceled orders. While many other companies went out of business, we rode the wave and managed to pull through until the economy picked up again.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Royal Stone and Tile story. Tell us more about the business.
Our company is a direct importer of marble, porcelain tiles, and slabs. We also have a retail store in west LA with large warehouses and a 50,000 sq. ft. slab yard with massive amounts of unique and specialized inventory of mainly Italian origin materials, but we also import from Brazil, Portugal, Spain, Israel, Greece turkey and China.

We are different from other companies because we were able to become a one stop shop for consumers. The construction process is already stressful as is, and whereas normally customers would bounce from a boutique tile shop to make tile selections, to another slab yard to pick slab and solid surface materials, our customers are able to accomplish A to Z by bridging the gap. To also ease the burden of stress on our customers, we have quick shipping and are able to fill immediate large orders.

How do you, personally, define success? What’s your criteria, the markers you’re looking out for, etc?
When I was younger, I imagined success was having a highly profitable business with many employees, because at the time it was just my father and I. I always dreamed of being able to enrich people’s lives by employing them and creating a sense of community among the workplace, and now, years later, I take great pride in that almost all of our employees have been with us for years and have established a family style environment in our business. Since I have always been so close to my family, I have always viewed success as one day being able to start my own. One marker of success for me was to hopefully meet my soulmate, which I did almost 3 years ago. We are now expecting our first child in December and I could not feel more successful that I do now.

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