Here’s how this entrepreneur built his $3 million business buying cars at auctions

Craig Stowell loves what he does for a living. He gets to follow his passion and go car shopping as a profession.

Stowell owns Flying Wheels, a car dealership in Danville, New Hampshire. The business, which is valued at an estimated $3 million, buys about 80% of its cars at auctions around the country. For him, it’s retail therapy.

“I never know what I’m going to come home with and that’s half the thrill, half the fun,” he said.

In 2022, the U.S. vehicle auction market was valued at $3.21 billion. More than 9 million cars are sold at auctions around the U.S. every year, according to the National Auto Auction Association.

Flying Wheels reached nearly $1.3 million in sales last year. A typical month brings in about $120,000 in sales. Many of those sales come from Stowell’s online followers on YouTube and other social media.

Stowell has purchased as many as 10 vehicles at a single auction, a personal record, but there are days he walks away empty-handed. He says he has lost thousands of dollars making silly mistakes that taught him lessons for the future.


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