Michael Richter became an entrepreneur at the age of 25 when he founded Solid Engineering Solutions Inc., a software company and authorized dealer of Autodesk software. Two years later, he had 15 employees, earned the coveted Shooting Star Award from Autodesk and reached platinum status within the Autodesk community.
In 2012, Richter launched Troico, a design, renovation and custom millwork company with a manufacturing facility based in Coquitlam, while maintaining his software company. He sold his software company to Cansel in 2013, focusing his attention on Troico. After acquiring the assets of a defunct high-end cabinet company, he applied his manufacturing expertise and fully automated his shop with new software and equipment upgrades. Troico has since doubled its gross sales annually, and today has about 40 full-time employees.
Richter, 39, describes his road to success as “rough,” but said he was motivated to work hard in order to spend quality time with his family.
“A lot of it was the school of hard knocks. It’s been a challenge, but I’m a gambler. I think it’s part of the excitement for me.”
Having a heavy-duty mechanic father with a love of vintage hotrods, Richter learned about mechanical engineering at a young age. He restores classic cars as a hobby, and his custom 1937 Ford roadster has won best-in-show awards in the Lower Mainland.
While he never attended post-secondary schools, Richter trained himself in AutoCAD, AutoCAD Inventor and AutoCAD Electrical software. In 2012, Richter invented a new way to use mandrel bending as an alternative to difficult cutting and welding systems in metal forming. He holds patents for the invention in both Canada and the U.S.
Richter, a father of two boys, also pioneered the fixed-pricing renovation/new build model in B.C., for which Troico is well known.
Richter’s first son was born with a cleft lip and palate and was later diagnosed with autism. Troico donates annually to Smile Train, an international charity that provides cleft repair surgery and care to children in developing countries.
Join us to celebrate the 2016 Forty under under 40 Awards January 25, 2017 at the Vancouver Convention Centre. For tickets and event info visit www.biv.com/events/40under40.